Whether you are promoting an affiliate product, a non-profit cause or yourself, I’ll venture to guess that your website aims to accomplish one ultimate goal – get visitors to buy whatever it is that you’re selling. Some will have no problem with making a purchase right away, but others may be interested in subscribing to your mailing list so they can get to know you better. While instant sales are definitely nothing to frown about, converting subscribers isn’t too shabby either. It gives you the opportunity to gain the trust that will make people feel more comfortable doing business with you.

When someone visits your website, signing up is their decision, but whether or not they actually do it – well that’s all on you. Here are some easy things you can do to convince them that signing up is a good idea:

Give Incentive

Growing an email list can be hard work. Unless you are a celebrity, a big company or someone with a lot of steam behind their brand, many visitors will come in wondering why they should give you the time of day. Paying your site a visit is one thing, but letting you into their inbox is another. This is why you must give them a compelling reason to sign up. Although valuable information or great products make a great starting point, it may take a free gift, white paper or something else along those lines to reel them in. Promising value is cool, but dangling instant benefits is even cooler.

Bring in the Right Traffic

If someone finds you by clicking the link on a sports betting site, the chances of them subscribing to your email newsletter about mobile application development are very low. If anything, they’ll wonder how your link got on the gambling site in the first place and head for the virtual exit as soon as they notice that your topic isn’t relevant. The more qualified your traffic, the better chance you have of getting them to sign up. When engaging in your link exchange, affiliate marketing and blog comment posting initiatives, make sure the sites you work with are related to your niche and will bring you relevant traffic.

Get Yourself Out There

Your business may be unique but, no matter what area you specialize in, it is safe to say that your topic has been covered extensively online. Be it auto insurance or mortgage processing, someone somewhere is chiming in on the subject. Such discussions are taking place via blogs, forums and social networks, and as a result, these channels have become excellent sources for traffic. You can use them to gain exposure, credibility and traffic that may be interested in subscribing to your email list. Whether you are showcasing your expertise on a blog or Q&A site, be sure to create custom landing pages tailored for visitors coming in from those sources.

For the subscriber, the beauty of opt-in email marketing is having the freedom to sign up when they’re interested and leave when they’re not. The control is in their hands – but never underestimate the power you have to shape their decision.