We would like to have the sign up window automatically pop up when someone visits our home page to try and increase sign ups and logins/interactions with the community.
I was wondering if anyone else had done this or something similar? If so did it help to increase sign ups and/or engagement and how did you implement it?
Would you mind clarifying what you mean by "Sign in pop up"? Do you mean showing the sign in prompt instead of the actual content or an overlay with a sign in prompt?
Both are quite intrusive experiences and I don't think you will see hat much of an uplift in return for the damage to the visitor experience.
Instead you will probably see higher registration conversion rates if you preset small prompts ("Want to see more / be notified of / subscribe to content like this?") right after content or solutions were shown to tie a benefit statement to the registration prompt. Take a look at the signposting that Google Adwords have put into place, e.g. https://www.en.advertisercommunity.com/t5/Analytics-Academy/What-session-users-convert-at/m-p/996101...
These are usually text only elements so not too complicated to add with some HTML knowledge. Also when you are adding multiple registration prompt on the same page think about adding web analytics tracking codes so you can determine the successful calls to action in regard to wording, styling and placement on the page.
I would also suggest being wary of forcing users to register before they can access content, even if the registration box can be closed. Similar to those pop ups on news sites that ask for your email address I can only see this generating negative experiences for users. A far better approach is to wait until a user has had an opportunity to see the value in your community and then prompt them to register. For example, if they attempt to interact with a post in some way (Me Too, Kudo, Mark Helpful, etc) that is your opportunity.
If you go into a retail store and before you have had a chance to browse the staff ask you to join the reward program, wouldn't that be a jarring experience? There is a good reason this interaction occurs at the checkout during a purchase.
I think this is an area in which the platform could be improved. I would like to be able to trigger a pop up to users to encourage them to register/sign in after they have been browsing the site for a certain period of time, much in the same way that the surveys current pop up. As long as it was easily dismiss-able, I don't think it would be too annoying to visitors and would be a powerful tool for increasing registrations.
From a technical perspective - I would say it would be quite simple to write some code that triggers a click on the "sign in" link (and opens the pop up) depending on certain conditions.
You can try copying & pasting the below code in the browser console, just to get an idea - ensure you are logged out and on a page using our standard sign in links - Note: this is a test hack, not code I would use in production 🙂 )
But I agree with what @ClaudiusH said - one need to be careful with automatic triggering of popups.
Hi @ClaudiusH Thanks for the advice. I was thinking of an overlay but agree this could be a little intrusive. My concern was that visitors arriving on our community via search etc may think it is just a content site and not realise that they can actually join as the join and the benefits of doing so. I like your suggestion of prompts though so will look into whether we can implement something like this.
For some further inspiration on prompts to sign up or engage take a look at the Google Adwords Community. In particular the "Need help" popup, the "Guide Me" link and the "Didn't find what you were looking for?" prompt they added seem to be exactly along the same alley you are thinking.