4 Tips for Creating an Unsubscribe Page that Makes Them Want to Stay

Peter Roesler, President - Web Marketing Pros

By Peter Roesler

President, Web Marketing Pros

emailWhen most email marketers create their unsubscribe page, it’s usually treated as an afterthought. This is understandable since the unsubscribe page is often the final step of an unsuccessful campaign, as opposed to the landing page, which is often the final step of a successful campaign. However, marketers should think of the unsubscribe page as their last chance to bring wayward sheep back to the fold. Email marketing is one of the most effective internet marketing strategies, so it’s important to keep subscribers from leaving. Here are four tips that can help you make an unsubscribe page that can keep subscribers from unsubscribing.

  1. Find Out Why They Are Leaving
    This first tip is helpful for two reasons. First, asking subscribers why they are leaving gives them a chance to explain their reasons which can help marketers build better emails in the future. This turns the loss of a subscriber into a learning opportunity. Second, simply asking people why they are leaving may be enough to get them to stay. If they leave actionable feedback, they may wait to see if the change is implemented. For example, say a person about to unsubscribe writes that they want more coupons when asked why they are leaving.Since, they know the message they wrote got to the company, they may want to wait to see if there are more coupons in the email newsletter in the near future. And in a broader sense, asking shows that the company cares about the readers of the newsletter. It’s a much better feeling than the “You want to leave, well there’s the door” vibe that consumers get from most unsubscribe pages.

  2. Offer Options to to Address Most Common Issues
    Most people who unsubscribe to a newsletter do so for the same general reasons. By creating custom subscription options to address these issues gives marketers a chance to fix the issue before the customer leaves. The best example of this is with mail frequency. Some retailers send out daily email newsletters. While this may be appreciated by many of their subscribers, some people will get annoyed by the constant mailings. Having options on the unsubscribe screen where the subscriber only gets an email once a week or once every other week can make a huge difference in the unsubscribe rate. The most common issues will vary from business to business, but these can be identified by the responses people give when asked why they want to leave.

  3. Use Personalization Fields
    Just as personalization catches the attention of readers of an email, it can work just as well on the unsubscribe page. Adding the customer’s name to the unsubscribe page humanizes the brand, as well. For example, a message that says “We’re sorry to see you go, [Client’s Name]. Maybe you would like these options better.” The message would catch the attention of the subscriber. It would  make them feel that the brand truly cares about them. And whether they choose to the other options or not, they would consider them. It’s worth it to put in the extra effort to add personalization. Remember, the unsubscribe page is the last chance to put your best foot forward.

  4. Don’t Be Boring
    This final tip carries on the idea about using the unsubscribe page as a chance to wow people back to the list. Many unsubscribe pages just have one or two lines of text, a form field for the email address, and a submit button. This is clean and simple, but a wasted opportunity. Besides employing the tricks mentioned above, marketers should use the space to remind people why they signed up for the newsletter in the first place. Don’t add so much stuff that the page is confusing or loads slowly, but that leaves plenty of space for a strong message that can bring people back.

Marketers can’t throw in the towel just because someone has clicked the unsubscribe link. The unsubscribe page gives marketers a chance to win back the consumer. By using the four tips mentioned here, marketers can keep more unsubscribers from taking that final step and gain valuable data that can be used to create better emails in the future.

For more email marketing strategies, read this article on four email marketing mistakes business owners should avoid.


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