Is Having Pop-Ups on your Website a Good or Bad Thing?

There is a lot of debate on whether or not having pop-ups on a website is helpful or hurtful. On the one hand, a pop-up can promote special offers, newsletters, and more. On the other hand, it can be seen as out-of-date if not done correctly. If you do decide you would like to try having a pop-up on your site, there are certain rules to follow to ensure they are used correctly.

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Why Pop-ups can be Good:

They can be used for a multitude of purposes. 
Pop-ups can be used to get newsletter sign-ups, to display a special promotion, cart abandonment messages, and more. 
They can be used at different times for different reasons.
Depending on the reason for your pop-up, you can have it trigged for different reasons. It can be activated upon entry, as the first thing that the visitor sees when they enter the site. This could offer the visitor a code for a first-time buyer. A pop-up can be caused by an action, such as buying an item could cause a pop-up about signing up for a newsletter, to appear. Or a pop-up can be released right before a visitor exits the site, maybe reminding them they have items in their cart. 
Hello, increased ROI.
You don’t have to pay for pop-ups, they are basically a free advertisement. If you make your pop-up something that can increase your revenue, then it is doing its job. Plus, they are even better for that potential click-thru rate and conversions. 

How to Do Pop-Up's Right:

Make your pop-up look good. 
One of the big differences between a good pop-up and a bad one is how it looks. Make sure your pop-up looks just as good and as modern as the rest of your site does. You want it to stand out and direct attention to what you are promoting, not for it to stick out like a sore thumb.
Make them meaningful.
Make sure the pop-up serves a purpose and causes the visitor to make an action. The action could be anything from signing up for a newsletter, following on Facebook, or completing a purchase. Just keep the ad simple, catchy, and straight forward.
Keep it mobile-friendly.
Just because it looks fantastic on a desktop, that doesn’t mean that it is going to be responsive on mobile. There is nothing worse than viewing a site on mobile, only for the pop-up to completely cover the mobile website entirely. Design your pop-up ad to fit every device properly. Be sure to check with a professional (or to do your homework) on the exact rules Google has for pop-ups on mobile.
Always give an out. 
Make sure there is that little ‘x’ in the corner or that cute little ‘close’ button, so people can get out of the ad if they want to.
As far as the ‘not so good goes’, they can make certain people unhappy. People still see them as being intrusive, they don’t like it when they block content, and when they don’t allow you to get out of the ad. 
This is why it is important to follow the proper rules of pop-ups (i.e. you give them an out and you format them properly). 
In the end, it is your choice as to whether or not you think a pop-up ad is good for your business. When done properly and creatively, a pop-up can be a great thing.