You probably think you should be building an email list with the help of an email newsletter on your WordPress website, but you are not entirely sure how to do it. Firstly, we all rely heavily on social media such as Facebook and Twitter. In fact it’s the only meaningful marketing tool we use. It’s quick and easy and there is no tricky tech to master. But we do not own our social media content. Social media platforms can lose popularity or shut down. What would you do if your social media audience dried up overnight? If the answer is ‘be filled with despair and start crying’ then you need to take back some control in the form of building an email list.
Why set up an email newsletter subscription?
While social media is a great way to interact with your readers but not everyone checks into their social media accounts frequently. When they do, they will often scroll for short periods and see only a fraction of the content. On the other hand, email is the most reliable and direct way of communication with your website visitors. Emails are also a great way to share exclusive deals with your audience, which gives people a great incentive to sign up for an email subscription to begin with. As a result, you can build a steady stream of regular visitors for your site.
If you are curious and want to know how to add an email newsletter subscription box to your WordPress site. And then, how to connect it to an email marketing service provider such as Mailchimp. Then you are at right place, we have some step by step instructions for you here. So, let’s do this and start building your email list.
You need to follow four steps for the entire process and they are:
- Sign up with Mailchimp
- Authorize your WordPress site to Mailchimp
- Install a WordPress plugin for newsletter signups
- Add an email newsletter subscription box to your WordPress site
1: How to sign up a free MailChimp account
Mailchimp is easy to use email marketing tool which provides a quick and easy way of creating, sending, and tracking email campaigns. Its easy to use interface allows you to see who opened your emails, and whether they clicked your links or not. Mailchimp also allows you to send personalized emails to everyone on your mailing list.
To get started with Mailchimp follow the step by step instructions as mentioned below.
Step 1: Go to MailChimp website and click on the “Sign Up Free” button.
Step 2: Mailchimp will ask for some necessary details such as your email address, your desired username and password. Once you are done, you will get a standard confirmation email with an activation link.
Open the email you get from Mailchimp, click on the “Activate Account” button. It will take you through a quick setup wizard and answer a couple more questions about your site and business. When you are done with that, you will be able to start working with your new Mailchimp account.
Just to give you a heads-up what Mailchimp can do for you, here are the options available via the main menu on the dashboard:
- Campaigns – This is the tab where you will send out new newsletters.
- Templates – It is used to keep email newsletter templates.
- Audience – This tab is designed to help you collect and manage your contacts.
- Reports – Once you have a couple of newsletters sent, this is where you will see reports on the effectiveness of your campaigns such as clicks, opens and much more.
- Content Studio – Here you will get files, graphics, and other assets that you can use in your newsletter design.
2: How to authorize your WordPress site to Mailchimp
In our last section, we have explained how do you sign up for Mailchimp. In this section you will learn step by step instructions, how Mailchimp can access your WordPress site through API key.
In simple terms, an API key is a unique authorization method that tells Mailchimp that your WordPress site should be allowed to connect to your Mailchimp account. Here is how to get the API key:
Step 1: Go to API keys page.
Step 2: Scroll down the page where it says “Your API keys”, click on “Create A Key” button.
You will see a success message after generating a new API key which is ready to use on your WordPress site. An example of an API key from the dashboard is illustrated below.
Copy your API key and note it down which will be used on our next section.
3: How to install Mailchimp for WordPress plugin
In our last section we have generated API key which will be used by a plugin called “Mailchimp for WordPress” in your site. In order to do so simply log into your WordPress dashboard and follow the instructions.
Also Read: 3 Different ways to install WordPress plugin
Step 1: Go to Plugins -> Add New
Step 2: In the search field, enter “Mailchimp for WordPress.”
Step 3: Click on the “Install Now” button. Wait for a few seconds until the orange icons stops spinning.
Step 4: Click on “Active” button.
Step 5: Go to Mailchimp for WP -> Mailchimp
Step 6: At this stage, Mailchimp for WordPress plugin is almost ready to be used. The only thing that the plugin needs right now to integrate with your Mailchimp account via API key.
We had note down our API key few steps back which we are going to use in this step. If you did not note down your API key then go back to your Mailchimp’s API Key page. Copy your API key and paste it into Mailchimp for WordPress plugin. Hit on “Save Changes” button.
At this point you will see a confirmation message and your WordPress site is fully connected with your Mailchimp account.
4: How to add an email newsletter subscription box to your WordPress site
In our previous section we have successfully installed “Mailchimp for WordPress” plugin. In this section, we are going to create a signup form that people can use to get onto your newsletter list. In order to do so follow the below step by step instructions.
Step 1: Go to Mailchimp for WP -> Form
Step 2: Give a name to your signup form and hit “Add new form” button.
Step 3: You will see a basic signup form which is pre-made for you. All you need to do at this point is fine-tune your form appearance and perhaps add few extra line of code.
The signup form code which we are using on our WordPress blog is demonstrated below. As per your requirement do necessary changes and plug the code.
<p> Want to be notified when our article is published? Enter your email address below to be the first to know. </p> <p> <input type="email" name="EMAIL" placeholder="Enter your email address" required /> </p> <p> <input type="submit" value="Subscribe" /> </p>
Step 4: If you are a guy who like more customization then “Mailchimp for WordPress” plugin will not make you sad. You can easily change default styling of your form by visiting its “Appearance” tab and picking some other predefined styling theme. Don’t forget to click on “Save Changes” when you are done.
Step 5: This is our final step to display signup form on your WordPress site. The most common way of doing that is by adding it as a widget to either your sidebar or footer. To do that, just go to Appearance -> Widgets in your WordPress dashboard.
You will see a new widget there called “MailChimp Sign-Up Form”. Expand the option and select the location on your site where it would be displayed and you are done.
At this stage, your newsletter signup form has been added to a widget area and is fully operational. Everyone who visits your WordPress site will see it. Here is what our footer newsletter signup form looks like:
We hope this article helped you learn how to properly add a newsletter signup form to your WordPress site. But we are not yet finished. We have something special tip for you. Want to add your email newsletter signup form under specific blog post or page?
Then go to Mailchimp for WP -> Form on your WordPress dashboard and grab the shortcode that’s right beneath the form’s name.
You can now put that shortcode wherever you wish within your specific blog post or page. Like so:
JOIN OUR NEWSLETTER
This is our end of this article. But are you happy with how your signup form has turned out? Is there anything else we can help you with? Please, drop your comment if you are facing any issue while following this article.
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