How to Retain and Convert Customer Interest with Exit Offers

With the rise of digital adtech, there’s no lack of tools at your disposal to utilize and ensure that no opportunity is wasted when it comes to gaining new customers for your business.

While it’s a blessing, it’s also a curse because it can be difficult to know what tools are right for your marketing initiatives and overall goals.

And then there’s the bright and shiny object syndrome that causes us to try a new software or marketing technique without thinking it through first.

Hey, it happens to the best of us.

The best way to cut through the confusion and avoid going down the wrong path is to understand your customer’s journey and, from there, make the decision of how to best maximize the monetary value of each customer.

Understanding the Customer Value Optimization (CVO) process is an advisable first step.

We’ve previously provided an overview of this method and how it helps businesses improve their customer conversion rates by swiftly guiding leads through the sales funnel to conversion.

From lead magnets to trip wires to return path campaigns, this process ensures that you increase the value that each customer can bring to your business.

See the CVO process below. Thanks to Digital Marketer for the helpful infographic that walks you through each step of the process. 

Take a few seconds to reflect on past instances where you decided to sign up for a mailing list or purchase an item online.

You’ll probably recognize and identify some of the subtle tactics used to help you cross that threshold from prospective buyer…to committed customer.

It’s a known fact that most sales don’t occur on the first visit, so architecting a return path is a proven follow-up method that will help encourage those ambivalent prospects to reconsider.

As a Digital Marketer Certified Partner, our team is trained in creating and implementing successful return paths that work in congruence with the wider CVO strategy.

One incredibly impactful return path strategy used within CVO is an exit offer.

This tactic serves as a final effort to convert visitors to your site just before they leave.

In this post, we’re sharing three overarching types of exit offer strategies and offering suggestions for platforms to use to develop them for your specific site.

Exit Offers

Inevitably, 98% of visitors to your site, especially if you are an online retailer, will leave without purchasing or converting to a lead.

To combat site abandonment, we suggest using an exit offer.

You may be familiar with exit offers–they’re those well-timed pop-ups that appear just as your cursor moves toward the top of the page, where you may have been planning to type in a new URL or close the window.

Exit offers use heat-mapping technology that tracks mouse movement, velocity, and other behaviors in order to determine the exact moment when a visitor intends to leave a site.


At that point, the pop-up is served to prevent the visitor from bouncing.

The aim is to give the visitor an enticing offer with the hopes that they will remain on the site and convert to a lead or customer.

Essentially, it’s a way of saying, “Wait! Before you go, I have something for you.”

Exit Offer Types

Yes, pop-ups have the potential to be annoying…but, when done right, can be very effective.

There are different types of pop-up exit offers that you can use, depending on your objective–whether it be to gain subscribers or to drive sales.

Pop-ups that generate leads

With a new prospective customer, it’s not always the best thing to ask them to purchase right away.

Trying to incentivize a visitor to immediately buy can be “too much, too quick,” and instead, you may want to start off with a special deal offer in exchange for entering their email address.

This could be anything from receiving a coupon to a free consultation.

The above screenshot illustrates this kind of exit offer.

Though it doesn’t necessarily mean that, after signing up, visitors will immediately utilize the discount and purchase mustard, Green Mountain Mustard is incentivizing them to consider it as an option.

More important, the company has increased their chances of establishing a continued relationship with potential customers by gaining access to their contact information.

Aside from inviting prospective customers to submit their email address, another option is to invite visitors to follow you on social media and grow your followers on those specific channels as well.

Take a look at the example below.

Pop-ups that lead to quick sales

Another type of exit offer is one that aims to convert to a quick sale by tempting visitors with deals such as short-term coupon codes, a gift with purchase, or free shipping.

In other words, you’re giving potential customers an increased incentive to purchase during this particular visit versus waiting until later.


There are several ways to introduce a quick-sale exit offer, such as:

  • Offering an immediate discount or coupon. This is one of the more popular ways to secure a last-second purchase with an exit pop-up.
  • Promoting top offers or special deals. If you have a unique “must-see” item you want your visitors to be aware of, this tactic is useful.
  • Increasing the size of orders. When presented in an exit offer, discount or shipping thresholds such as “10% off orders of $100 or more” or “free shipping on orders of $25 or more” are helpful in leading to conversions as well as increasing a customer’s order size.

Pop-ups that dissuade cart abandonment

If you’re an online retailer or sell info products and take payment via online checkout, exit offers can (and should) be utilized to retain shoppers that have already started filling their carts.

On average, 68% of shopping carts are abandoned. Not to fret.

There are numerous ways to help convince those more ambivalent customers to continue shopping and proceed through checkout.

In fact, exit offers specifically served to visitors at risk of abandoning their carts have proven to be quite effective.

According to QuickSprout, cart abandoners spend 55% more when remarketed to.


Here are a few strategic angles your exit offer can use to prevent cart abandonment:

  • Remind the customer that they still have items in their cart…sometimes they’ve simply forgotten!
  • Some online stores have multiple steps in their checkout processes that can seem complicated for unseasoned online shoppers. Customer support can be helpful, and an exit pop-up that offers to assist with checkout can reduce the cart abandonment rate.
  • Offer a bonus discount at checkout, whether it be for this specific purchase or for one in the future after completing their first purchase.
  • Sometimes shoppers are interested in purchasing a product, but upon seeing the shipping cost, lose momentum. Offering a discount on shipping can help mitigate abandonment at checkout.

Generic Pop-Ups versus Targeted Pop-Ups

You may decide to serve more generic exit offers that don’t highlight anything specifically related to the page the visitor is on.

However, it is possible to serve more targeted pop-up lead magnets that are related to the specific page the visitor is on or the content they are consuming.

For example, if a prospective customer is reading a blog post about social media marketing, one such exit offer could offer 20 free sample social posts in exchange for opt-in for your lead magnet on the 10 Ways to Leverage Facebook Marketing.

Since you already know that they have a specific interest in social media, there is a higher likelihood that they will be interested in gaining this additional value and knowledge in exchange for their contact information.

Exit Offer Platforms

There’s a wealth of exit offer generators and platforms, but we want to highlight and compare a few of them to give you a starting point:

  • OptinMonster: One of the most popular and cost-effective choices in the market. Plans range from $9-$29/month, and provide you with highly customizable pop-up templates, page-level targeting based on a visitor’s location and interaction with your site, and A/B testing to make data-informed decisions.
  • OptiMonk: Similar to Optinmonster, but it’s important to note that their basic plan only allows up to 5,000 visitors per month and costs $29/month. However, it’s a bit more user friendly than Optinmonster, so if you aren’t comfortable with customizing templates, this will simplify things for you.
  • Bounce Exchange: The most expensive option (pricing is custom and depends on your business) but also the most turnkey option. Their team will do a lot for you, including designing all of your exit pop-ups, as well as tracking and additional consulting.

Understanding how to develop exit offers and putting them into effect are impactful and helpful.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that you won’t reach the exponential potential for sales unless exit offers are used as part of a wider Customer Value Optimization strategy.
Be sure to develop a complete strategy for implementation that ensures you seize every opportunity for converting and retaining your customers of the future.

Want to learn more about the CVO process as a whole? Read more here!

michelle

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