how to create an email list fast

How to create an email list fast using your website

Have you ever used Bath & Body Works products? I know I have. From the days of sweet pea to warm vanilla sugar. They have a wide collection of fragrances, and these days I am really into their scented candles. 

The thing is I don’t really go into the Bath & Body Works store often, but when they email me a buy one get one offer or a free gift incentive, I am immediately tempted to go into their store and take advantage of the offer.

And the only reason they got that sale is through the power of email marketing.

If you want to learn how to create an email list using your website, continue reading this in-depth guide.

How to create an email list fast using your website

What is email?

Email is one of the best ways to help you grow your business and build your brand. It’s cost-effective and allows you to communicate with your audience directly. 

Benefits of email

  • Increase sales
  • Increase traffic to website
  • The right message at the right time
  • Encourage repeat purchases
  • Personalized messaging
  • You own your email list
  • Nurture and grow your relationship with your audience 

Still not buying it? The proof is in the pudding

Email is 40x more effective at acquiring customers than Facebook and Twitter combined
  • Email is 40x more effective at acquiring customers than Facebook and Twitter combined 
  • 99% of consumers check their email every day
  • In 2019 alone, 293.6 billion emails were sent and received each day. That’s a lot of emails.
  • But this figure is expected to rise to over 347.3 billion daily emails in 2022. That’s over half the world’s population
  • For every $1 you spend on email marketing, you can expect an average return of $42

Why create an email list?

Creating your mailing list is the first step to start taking advantage of email marketing.

But here’s the thing, you don’t have to spend anything to start building your email list. There are many free tools you can use to get started. At the end of the session, you can download my cheat sheet to get a list of the top free tools for building and managing your email list. 

There are many reasons to create your email list, but one of the most important is the fact that you own your email list.

Yes that’s right 

“The money is in the list”

That means you can connect with your list virtually anytime, anywhere when you want

Even with social media channels, email is still one of the most effective ways to reach your audience. 

The thing with social platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn is you don’t own it.

You can spend hundreds of dollars, time, and energy to grow your following on social media, but out of nowhere, Facebook can change their algorithm, so your audience doesn’t see your posts in their feed.

Or Instagram can block you or prevent you from accessing your account.

Anything can happen because you don’t own the platform.

Related: 30 free tools to start an online business in 2020

Pay to play

And now, on most social media channels, you don’t have the same reach. In fact, you often have to buy sponsored posts in order to get in front of your own audience. 

But with your website and list, you are in full control. 

So that’s why it’s essential to leverage your website to build your list.

So let’s get into how to use your website to start building your list, or if you’ve already started building your list, you can learn how to get even more email subscribers.

How to create an email list 

How to create an email list fast

1. Create a lead magnet or freebie

Create a lead magnet or freebie you want to give away in exchange for your website visitors’ email. Here’s where you can get really creative with your offer. There are tons of options you can use for your freebie giveaway, including:

CheatsheetsProduct Samples
Discount codesTemplates
Free trialsCase Studies

And you don’t have to be a professional graphic designer either to create your freebie. You can create stunning ebooks, templates, and checklists using Canva, a free online design tool.

They also don’t have to take a ton of time to create. You can leverage existing assets you already have like an old blog post or video and turn that into your lead magnet. Or you, if you’re strapped for time, you can hire someone for cheap on Fiverr to write and design your freebie. 

Make sure your freebie is relevant to your audience

The number one thing to consider is to make sure your lead magnet is relevant to your audience and ties in nicely with your overall brand offering.

2. Decide where you want to host your freebie and form

The option I recommend is to create a dedicated landing page to host your freebie or offer. A landing page is a web page specifically designed to capture your visitor’s information in exchange for your freebie. 

Your landing page should include information about the freebie, why it should be downloaded, and how it can help your visitors. It should really sell the value of your freebie. 

It should also include a form to capture the website visitors’ information. 

Remember, it’s an exchange. They’re giving you access to their personal inbox in exchange for something that will add value to their lives.

3. Create opt-in opportunities for visitors

To get visitors to your landing page and to increase the number of signups you get on your site, you should also create strategic opportunities throughout your website for visitors to sign up for your email list or get to your landing page that hosts the freebie. 

A few great examples include: 

  • Popup. Shows a pop-up box in the middle of your page.
  • Scroll Box. Shows a pop-up box that sticks to the bottom of your page.
  • Inline Form. Shows a form box that’s in line with the content of your page. This is great to use in the body of your blog posts.
  • Click Trigger Popup. Shows a pop-up in the middle of your page that is activated by a link click. So when someone clicks a specific link on your website, the pop up will appear. 
  • Welcome Mat. Shows a form that covers your entire page. This appears as soon as a visitor gets to your site and covers the entire page. 
  • Smart Bar. Shows a bar that sticks to the top or bottom of your page. 
  • Content upgrades. Cheat sheets or checklists. Include these in the first few paragraphs of your blog post 

4. How to add opt-in opportunities on your site?

Depending on how your website is set up, there are different options for adding pop-ups and forms to your site to create your mailing list.


If your site is hosted on a platform like Wix or Squarespace, there are many easy to use options to add your pop-up and forms already embedded in their platform.

I personally have used Wix to create a number of sites, and their email opt-in features are seamless and easy to use. They also have a built-in email marketing component so you can manage your list and send emails directly from your Wix account.


If your site is self-hosted on WordPress, it can be a little trickier to set up your opt-in pop-up and form. It’s a more technical process, but it can be done.

With WordPress, you will need to use a plugin or external app in order to set up your mailing list opt-ins. 

Luckily there are many free apps available. Like Sumo or MailChimp. At the end, if the session, you can check out my cheat sheet to get a list of apps to help streamline your mailing list setup and implementation. 

In most cases, setting up the pop-ups and forms involve pasting code into your site and connecting it with your email marketing software. So once someone fills out the form, your email list is populated, and you can start emailing your new subscribers. 

The thing that’s cool about tools like Sumo is that it streamlines the process, and you can trigger your opt-in pop-ups to appear based on specific criteria, such as user intent, time on page, exit intent, and many more.

This customization allows you to maximize opportunities to collect emails on your website and grow your mailing list. 

Tips on creating high converting website pop-ups and landing page

To maximize your conversion rate, which is the number of new subscribers you get to sign up for your mailing list, let’s get into a few tips.

  • Create a catchy headline. Make sure to have fun with your copy. Depending on your brand, it can be fun or humorous.
  • Make the offer or incentive clear. This means your visitor knows exactly what they’re getting in return for their email.
  • Remember, it’s an exchange. They’re giving you access to their personal inbox in exchange for something that will add value to their lives, whether that’s something educational or entertaining.
  • Don’t ask for too much information. In some cases, it’s fine to just request their email address or name. Bath & Body Works makes it simple by just requesting the visitor’s email address.

How to create an email list fast: Things to consider

Forms. This is what you use to collect your website visitors’ information. Decide how much of your visitor’s information you would like to collect. Name and email are usually safe bets as people are often wary or reluctant to give away too much information. 

But having the name and email is enough for you to be able to contact them and to personalize your email communications.

Subscriber opt-in checkbox. Be sure to add a subscriber opt-in checkbox to your form to ensure that you’re compliant with certain privacy and data collection regulations.

This means subscribers will have to select a checkbox indicating that they are okay with receiving email communication from you.

In some cases, you can pre-select the checkbox, but it’s advisable to have them select it, which shouldn’t be an issue since your freebie is so great, and they really want to get it!