Should You Use A Two Step Opt In? by Charlie Page

Should You Use A Two Step Opt In?

If you have not already, you will soon be hearing a lot about a “new” opt in method called the two step opt in method.

  • Some marketers are already claiming they are getting “70% opt in rates” using this method.
  • Others are proclaiming the “death of the squeeze page”.
  • Yet another claims that this is the “secret weapon” used by millionaire marketers, the one thing they don’t want to share with us peasants.

All of that is bull, of course, but the two step opt in is powerful and something you need to know about, and possibly consider using in your marketing.

Today I’d like to share what the two step opt in is all about and help you separate the facts from the hype.

What is a two step opt in?

The traditional way of having someone opt in to a list has been to display a form on your site. You can see that on almost all squeeze pages, on many blogs and even in some email messages.

You probably see such a form on the page you are reading right now.

It works well and is very easy for the reader to understand. They opt in and they get something that you are promising them. Simple and effective.

The two step opt in uses a different approach.

With the two step opt in you display a link, or button, for the reader to click and then an opt in form appears for them to fill in.

They still need to put in their email address but they don’t see the form until after they click the button or link.

The logic behind the two step is that the reader is much more likely to fill in the opt in form because they have begun an action (by clicking the link or button) and they want to complete that action.

That makes sense.

Some marketers are using a bit of pop psychology to sell their wares, claiming that humans “have” to complete an action they start in order to feel right about life. More bull in my view.

If that were true no one would abandon a shopping cart yet we know shopping cart abandonment rates are sky high.

Back to the two step opt in.

Five things to know about the two-step opt in.

There are a few things for you to know about the two step opt in process.

  1. The two step opt in process works. My marketing friends who are using it are reporting excellent results.
  2. You will be hearing about this everywhere very soon. Products are going to flood in that offer this feature, and many WordPress themes will incorporate this soon, in my view. NOTE: See the information on Optimize Press below.
  3. Using a two step opt in is not required to succeed online. Squeeze pages are not “dead” and this is just another new tactic that might last, might not. No need to “stop the presses” and change everything.
  4. IMPORTANT: Using a two step opt in process forces you to use a double opt in method in most cases. As of this writing, you are forced to use double opt in with Aweber and Get Response if you use a two step opt in method.
  5. You should consider testing a two step opt in process against what you are using now. I’m testing it and will report back results. Most of my marketing friends are using it with great success.

I want to be clear that the two step opt in process is something worth trying right now.

Just no need to drop everything to make the change.

Three ways to accomplish a two-step opt in.

Do you need to rush out and buy the latest and greatest over-promoted widget that will practically guarantee huge opt in rates and make all your dreams come true?

Not necessarily.

There are three ways to get the job done for most people.

  1. Services like LeadPages have been offering this for some time. This is how some top marketers, like Frank Kern and Jeff Walker have been testing the process.
  2. Optimize Press (the them I use on all my sites) has this built it to their programming. If you use Optimize Press you don’t need to buy anything to use a two step opt in process.
  3. There will be plug ins galore that do this. There are some on the market now, and they look good. I am testing a few now for my Common Sense Blog Blueprint members.

Is a two step opt in process right for you?

I believe it is worth testing, and encourage you to do that.

If you have an opt in process in place now, on your blog or a squeeze page, make the change and see how it goes.

No matter how you go about it, the two step opt in process is worth a try. I hope this information helps you make sense of the two step opt in process and helps you build your list faster and more profitably than ever.

Because having a profitable list is a beautiful thing indeed!

Charlie Page Signature


33 thoughts on “Should You Use A Two Step Opt In?”

  1. Nice article, since it’s very hard to find anything about this subject online. My question is, do you know any other tools than leadpages and optimizepress that do this? Because it’s really HARD to find another tool (specially a wordpress plugin) which does it!! Thanks a lot

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  7. One thing that I’ve seen in the past few months that I’m not very keen on is the use of a 2 step opt in without letting people know that you’ll be signing up. Language like “Just click this button and you’ll get our free yada yada yada” but then pops up wanting your email seems over the line to me.

    Another potential problem that I foresee is that there have been the odd 3 or 4 step opt in in the past that ask for more once they’ve got the name/email. So people may be leery of the process when they see a 2nd form popping up. Not sure if it is an issue, but something to keep in mind depending on how jaded your target audience might be.

    1. Good points. Everything new online is overused at first. But the thinking behind the two step opt in (when done right) is sound and is working for most who use it in my experience.

      Appreciate your comments.

  8. Hey Charlie thanks for the information unfortunately Ryan’s article was down when I got here, you asked us to let you know if that was the case here in comments

    1. Got it. His pages don’t last long as he often moves to the next product he is promoting. Thanks for letting me know.

      1. He is promoting something else. I used your link “Here is a great example” & signed up for the swipe file to see what happens. It’s confusing

      2. I thought that might happen, which is why I wrote a little warning that it might. I have removed that from the article.



  9. Hi Charlie, Great post on the two step optin process. This is the first time I have heard of this and the link to Ryan Deiss, diditalmarketer is dead.

    I love writing squeeze pages, so when I hear someone say that SQP are dead I will have a good response… “Bull”

    I am going to research this further and test it out on my blog soon.

    Thanks for the heads up Charlie

    1. Glad you liked it. Ryan’s links don’t last very long usually. If you use Optimize Press this is built in. If not, there are plugins that do this and of course LeadPages is the best at it.


  10. Thanks Charlie for useful info, for me i use the two steps from long time and my idea was and still like what you said which is we need to gain how care about our offers.

    In another idea that i work with and love to let every one know it, which is i shut down the two step confirmation email “confirm email -then- welcome email”, i only work with one step email signup “welcome email”, and my idea is the subscriber become hurry in everything, so i see the one confirm step be useful, like to hear from all of you.

  11. Hi Charlie,
    Useful information as allways. I’ve noticed this in use on several sites, but never thaught about why they did not use a traditional optin form. Now I know, and will be testing on my sites.

    1. Charlie Page

      It’s a very effective technique when used right. Not a panacea of course but a great tool.

      I’m happy you found it helpful.


  12. Hi Charlie,

    A great post… I too received the emails spruiking the amazing plugin. I’m glad you wrote about it. I’m starting a new website based on your Curation Power. I really like the course and its something I am more comfortable with as opposed to IM. I will consider OPtimize Press for this feature on my new website. By the way Curation Power is a great course. Thanks again Charlie.

    1. Charlie Page

      Thanks Michael. I’m so happy that Curation Power has been so well received. I was hoping to be of help to people, and the comments inside the site certainly indicate people are being helped.

      Curation is important, and effective, and I am happy you are embracing it.


  13. Are the stats base on signups relative to views of the first page (i.e. step 1) or the form display?

    If the latter, then is the increase really an increase? Is 70% of the 50% of visitors that make that first click any better than a 35% opt in with the one step approach?

    1. Charlie Page

      Good questions. Since they are not my stats, but rather sales hype, I simply don’t know. I don’t doubt that this method works, just wanted to share what I know about the method and the pros and cons.

      To respond to your point, I think the two step can be enlightening in the way of being able to refine your offer. If a high percentage click the link but do not fill in the form you have a change to improve the process. With a standard form you don’t have that as you can’t track how many start to fill in a form but don’t complete.

      A small matter to be sure, but still something to think about if traffic volumes are high.


  14. As always it is so refreshing and informative reading your post.
    I am new to internet marketing and believe me I have been taken to many
    times to count.
    I was a Home Builder by trade and a unsuspected illness had me to make a change or as they say reinvent myself. I am no spring chicken now so I seem to try and see the
    good in everyone, what a joke! A bad one at that.
    I am Raising our granddaughter whom is autistic so
    my time is very limited. I get most things done in the wee
    hours of the night. Sometimes I find myself hooting like an owl.
    Just wish I was as wise as one!
    So thanks again MR. Charlie for all the info!
    Happy Trails To All Where Ever They May Lead!


    1. Charlie Page

      Thanks Michael. An illness at about 45 years old put me in a new direction as well. That’s how I ended up online actually, so I can relate.

      Stick with it, focus on a few key things, and I know you will do well!


  15. You’re right Jeff. That terminology is confusing. When I first read Charlie’s email, I thought the two-step opt in he was talking about was double opt in. I really don’t have an opinion one way or the other on this for myself.

    But if a person wants more information, whether there’s a two step or not, he or she is filling out the form. So I guess it depends on the individual and his or her need to receive more information or not from that website.

    You put out a very informative article, Charlie, just like you always do. Thanks

  16. Frank A Trueblood

    As always Charlie, really good no nonsense great information. Definitely worth reading. To answer the question above from Jeff, The way he is able to use the two step otp-in method with Aweber is because he has the opt-in shut off. At least that’s how I do it on my campaigns and it does work well.


  17. I saw this two step opt in being offered in one the emails that I got yesterday with all the boo ha ha about 70% opt in rate and every thing else ramped up too. In one sense it seems innocent enough and it does not appear to have a lot of deception in it’s actual action, but in another sense it is another way marketers lie and play with people’s minds, which has gotten me to the point that I dislike and abhor IM marketing. Unfortunately there are just so many people out there that can easily be taken by this stuff, that it appears that all the dirt and crap that I see will continue on. I am at the point that I now have to find a way to hide my computer ID number because I get emails from people who tell me what I did or didn’t do with their emails. I get emails from marketers who tell me I “HAVE” to go to Facebook to get their information. I am not crazy about Facebook and I shouldn’t have to be led by the nose as though I am part of a sheep herd to do something, so between Google, marketers who are deceiving and manipulative, and the sadness of watching people fall for this crap, I look for a path where I can avoid all of this. I do wish there was even a fraction more people who checks these emails and the products that people push, so that we would not get ripped off so much with stuff that is not worthwhile in the overall picture of running these businesses. Anyway my thoughts for the moment.

  18. Hi Charlie, great article,
    however, I am currently using aweber with leadpages two step optin and I’m not using double opt-in in aweber. So apparently you can use single optin with two stop optin. (kind of confusing terminology here).

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