Want to Grow Your Email List? Here’s the #1 Number to Track

A couple of weeks ago I ranted about conversion rates, and how it’s possible to “increase your conversion rate” while actually getting LESS subscribers overall.

That’s because there are lots of ways to manipulate conversion rates.

For example, let’s say you have a popup that displays instantly when someone lands on your site.

Then you read a blog post about how it’s better to wait until someone has read some of your content before asking for their email address.

So you add a 30-second delay on your popup, and lo!

Your conversion rate improves from 2% to 3%.

Only that’s not really an improvement, because 75% of your visitors stay on your site for less than 10 seconds—which means that three quarters of your traffic never even gets the chance to opt in.

Tricky, tricky.

(You can do this same thing with sales pages by sending only highly qualified traffic to the page. You’ll get a higher conversion rate but fewer sales and less revenue.)

Right now my major focus for Simple Programmer is growing the email list.

And as I’m testing different optin forms, I’m being careful to avoid this trap myself by keeping my eye on the ONE conversion formula that actually matters.

Here it is:

# of unique visitors / # of email list subscribers

I don’t care about the conversion rate of any particular form.

What I want to know is, how many visitors to the site signed up for the email list?

This prevents me from getting sucked in by conversion rate “sleight of hand.”

And it keeps me focused on what will really grow the business—maximizing the number of email subscribers.

One tool I’m using to maintain this laser focus is the Thrive suite of email list-building tools.

Unlike most email tools, which encourage you to make bad decisions about your email list by reporting skewed conversion numbers for individual forms…

The Thrive Leads dashboard tells me at a glance what my sitewide conversion rate is.

That means the numbers won’t fool me into thinking I’m doing better than I am.

The more I use Thrive, the more convinced I am that it’s hands down the best tool for entrepreneurs and biz owners who are serious about growing their email list.

If that’s you, grab a copy of Thrive today: