Maybe you also experienced the same thing: when your cursor is leaving the browser area, the last "don't go!" pop up appears with messages like "please subscribe," "give your e-mail" etc...

I can understand the reasoning behind this decision but I would like to know if it really works? Is there any study about this behavior? Is it disturbing or acceptable from user perception?

  • Just a guess (I'd love to see someone test these marketing tactics.) but if the user is leaving, it's probably because they're done here and they're moving on to other tasks. So a "don't go" would be an interruption to what they're now trying to do. – Ken Mohnkern Oct 2 '15 at 11:32
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    it is very annoying indeed. It's understandable that its a marketing strategy to keep the user engaged on the website. I would love to see the statistics myself, but I can't imagine a scenario where that last pop up shows up declaring DONT GO! and the user thinks hmmm, ok let me stick around...if that does happen I can't imagine it being more than 1-2% of overall traffic. – Stanley VM Oct 2 '15 at 13:10
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    I can't imagine that ever works unless there is a benefit to the user, such as "don't go! stick around and receive 3 free tokens" in some iOS game or the likes. Or the sometimes acceptable "are you sure you want to leave?" popup if the page thinks it's accidentally being left. Also very loosely related. – DasBeasto Oct 2 '15 at 14:09
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    It is annoying. And the fact that no reputable big-name sites do this suggests that it doesn't work. – user31143 Oct 2 '15 at 14:38
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    Those that do this have a/b tested this and it works for them. Most that I have seen have an additional offer - or the transcript of a webinar - something that wasn't available on the first page. It may not work for your site, but it may be worth testing. – Bob Oct 7 '15 at 1:03
up vote 5 down vote accepted

Exit Pop Pops (aka Exit Intent Technology) can be highly effective in making conversions. Estimates say that there may be a 3%-20% increase in conversion rates.

Here is the rational

  • Exit overlays counteract the Paradox of Choice by simplifying the customer decision process.
  • Exit overlays reduce analysis paralysis in consumers by simplifying the decision to yes or no, red or black, in or out.
  • Decision fatigue and web traffic peak at the same time; exit overlays can help soften the blow.

From The Rooster blog

The trick is not to be annoying and to know as much as you can about your customers so you can give them something valuable and appropriate to their stage in the customer life cycle. Provide value in a polite manner = good UX. Annoy with repeated non relevant spam = bad UX.

There are quite a few companies and platforms that deal with abandoned carts and exit intent technology. It's really is down to science by now and it definitely works if done right.


Here are a few ways you can use Exit Pop Ups:

1. Pop-ups that drive instant sales

Avoid site abandonment
Offer an immediate discount, coupon, deal or a Time-based discount. It’s great tactic, but you must be careful. If you serve this offer on too many pages or put it in front of too broad a user segment, you risk losing credibility with your customers.

Avoid cart abandonment
Notifications about a product in the cart or offering Customer support are proven to help conversions. Bonus discounts at checkout or a shipping discount might help close the deal

2. Exit pop-ups that generate leads

Growing you mailing lists and following
Offering a special deal in exchange for an email address or a newsletter subscription with a personalized message can be great for business. You can also Invite visitors to follow you on social networks and genrate traction like that.

3. Messages that help to improve your site

Get visitors feedback You can get valuable feedback about your website in general or about the reason for leaving.

Any way in which you can add value to your customers and create some kind of last minute rapport is worth testing. pop-ups for content recommendation, e-book offers, short promotional clips, upcoming sale information and much more are all things you may consider. Remember to test and keep track of the metrics!

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