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I often find newsletter teasers that already include a text field that allows the user to fill in his email address. While it seems as the email was the only required field and submit would successfully subscribe the user to the newsletter submit instead loads page including the actual sign up form that asks for (additional) user data or enables the user to customize newsletter settings.

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I generally like the idea of the teaser format as I'd suppose that the input field succeeds in triggering the desired interaction. However, I wonder if users feel cheated when submit will load another form.

Unfortunately – now that I was looking for real examples – I couldn't find one. I'll update my post when I found one ...

  • It’s commonly encountered when trying to leave a comment on an article, and yes, it’s frustrating. – Crissov Dec 8 '14 at 14:45
  • I agree. I've read suggestions that whenever possible, complete the assumed task (signing up with email only) then offer more specific actions - or request more info - later. In the newsletter example, just make sure to have the "unsubscribe" and "email preferences" link in the confirmation email as well as every other email you send. – Phil Tune Dec 8 '14 at 22:14
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It's generally best to that the "teaser" actually performs an action. In the example you gave with the email, inputing their email should subscribe them to the list right away even though a secondary window might appear, this then become optional. IF they want to specify what types of emails they want or give some profile information then they can do that. However if they choose not to, they can just close that out. The benefit of this is that you have captured some information from the user (or in this case generated a lead).

As usual, context is important. If you do in fact need all the pieces of information, then having a "teaser" can help to hide the excessive fields or not to overwhelm users too much up from. I agree with the previous answer that you should never trick your user. If there will be additional info after the teaser, you should try to make it obvious.

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I think it's a good feature only if:

  • the users knows that the process is not completed. You can put «Wanna receive exclusive updates? Type your email to start sign up…»; here the keyword is "start".
  • it's enough to achieve the desired goal (receive the newsletter) but you can continue the process (customize which news you wanna receive, set a password, etc.).

It's a bad feature if you deceive the user: if the user thinks that typing the email will achieve the desired goal (receive the newsletter), and then you require more steps, probably the user will drop his intentions (maybe (s)he asks, when are you going to stop aking more things).

It's the same when a site said "sign up for free" and then they ask your credit card number. Even if I know they don't use the data and only it's to reduce the gap inthe decision to upgrade to a paid service, I quit the site. It's annoying, and makes you distrust.

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