List: Double Opt In or Single Opt In?

24 replies
Which do you prefer? I was having a real problem w/ people not confirming (like literally 38% of people didn't confirm!).

As a new email marketer, I just want to hear your guys' opinions on it.
#double #list #opt #single
  • Profile picture of the author Daniel44
    I personally would stick with double opt-in. If you look at the 38% who did not confirm you can guarantee at least half of them put in a fake email, and the rest of them couldn't be bothered to confirm, why would these people buy your product? Your list needs to be about quality not quantity
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    • Profile picture of the author BradBergeron
      Originally Posted by Daniel44 View Post

      I personally would stick with double opt-in. If you look at the 38% who did not confirm you can guarantee at least half of them put in a fake email, and the rest of them couldn't be bothered to confirm, why would these people buy your product? Your list needs to be about quality not quantity
      That sounds like a good enough point! Thanks!
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  • Profile picture of the author bertuseng
    Double opt in. To improve confirms, dont send them to a one time offer before they subscribe. Wait until they confirmed and then send them to a one time offer.
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  • Profile picture of the author Luke McCormack
    Brad

    Definitely double-optin. You are then ICANN spam compliant and get rid of timewasters early doors.

    Regards

    Nigel
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    • Profile picture of the author Shaun OReilly
      It doesn't need to be either/or.

      You can use both, depending upon the specific lists you're
      building.

      It also depends upon your risk tolerance, your market and
      the source of traffic you are using.

      If you like to sleep well at night knowing that your list will
      last long-term, then choose double opt-in.

      If you're in an aggressive market then you may want to
      use double opt-in to protect yourself from excessive spam
      complaints and malicious competitors.

      If you're driving traffic via PPC for example, then you may
      want to use single opt-in to make it viable.

      Choose the approach that works for the particular list you
      are building.

      Dedicated to your success,

      Shaun
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  • Profile picture of the author n3on
    Even I asked the same question few days ago.

    Go for double opt-in to keep your Autoresponder a/c safe.
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Using confirmed opt-in does not automatically make you CAN-SPAM compliant, nor does using single opt-in make you non-compliant.

      Using confirmed opt-in may help you defend yourself against some spam complaints, but it won't necessarily stop them.

      As Shaun said, much depends n your market, your business model and your risk tolerance.

      I tend to prefer confirmed opt-in for cold lists (squeeze pages, etc.). Not for any kind of imagined spam protection, but for deepening commitment to being on the list and sorting out some of the looky-loos.

      In some of the non-IM markets, it even builds some reciprocity. I don't demand that someone confirm that they want to be on the list. That just raises a question that might not have been there before. I don't even mention "spam" for the same reason.

      Instead, I ask for a favor - a very small one. I ask them to click a test link to let me know that my emails are getting through, so I can send them the really cool stuff I promised. Phrased properly for the individual market, people are happy to do me a favor in return for what I'm going to give them.
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  • Profile picture of the author taylorwinfield4
    I find it depends, if i want to collect information from buyers pre-buy, (so I can follow up with them if they didn't purchase etc) then I use single opt-in but generally use double opt-in to lower spam complaints etc!
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  • Profile picture of the author BradBergeron
    That's a great idea to "trick" the person into confirming, however it may not always work. Many other people will say, nah I won't bother with doing that favor for him, at which point you are screwed out of their business.

    Plus ConstantContact doesn't let you change the anchor text for the confirm link =\
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Originally Posted by BradBergeron View Post

      That's a great idea to "trick" the person into confirming, however it may not always work. Many other people will say, nah I won't bother with doing that favor for him, at which point you are screwed out of their business.

      Plus ConstantContact doesn't let you change the anchor text for the confirm link =
      I don't see how I'm "tricking" anyone into doing anything.

      As for the rest...

      You're right - many people won't "do me a favor", and I'm fine with that. With rare exceptions, I find that I'm not "screwed out of their business" because there was never business to be had in the first place. If I was giving stuff away because that's how I got my jollies, I'd just put a direct download link on the site and be done with it.

      And I don't use ConstantContact - or any other third-party service, for that matter, so what they allow and don't allow doesn't affect me.
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      • Profile picture of the author BrianMcLeod
        Originally Posted by JohnMcCabe View Post

        I don't see how I'm "tricking" anyone into doing anything.
        Of course you're not. The OP isn't getting it.

        ===

        Thanks for your request to join "This List" {!firstname_fix}

        Before we begin sending you the information you've requested,
        we need to make certain that we have your permission and that
        the email address you've submitted is receiving our messages.

        < Default Autoresponder Confirm Message Begins >

        ====
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        • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
          Originally Posted by BrianMcLeod View Post

          Of course you're not. The OP isn't getting it.

          ===

          Thanks for your request to join "This List" {!firstname_fix}

          Before we begin sending you the information you've requested,
          we need to make certain that we have your permission and that
          the email address you've submitted is receiving our messages.

          < Default Autoresponder Confirm Message Begins >

          ====
          I don't even use the default confirm message...

          After the paragraph you suggested, I add something like:

          "To do that, I need to ask you for a small favor. We set up our mailing program to send a short test message to the email address you gave us. All I need you to do is click the test link. That will tell our program that everything is as it should be, and we'll start sending the good stuff right away. Thanks in advance for your help..."
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        • Profile picture of the author BradBergeron
          Originally Posted by BrianMcLeod View Post

          Of course you're not. The OP isn't getting it.

          ===

          Thanks for your request to join "This List" {!firstname_fix}

          Before we begin sending you the information you've requested,
          we need to make certain that we have your permission and that
          the email address you've submitted is receiving our messages.

          < Default Autoresponder Confirm Message Begins >

          ====
          The way I got it when I first read (and I read it quickly so that may be my problem) was that he was using his subscribers to see if his emails were getting through, not to allow them to get the content.

          And yes, my product is free as well, but you are missing out on future business because none of your emails (the one's including affiliate links) get to them because they never confirmed.

          Again, though, he certainly changed his wording in the 2nd post and I certainly get it - I've been in this business for a fair amount of time, and although I haven't always had a list, I have known what email marketing is for a long time:

          "To do that, I need to ask you for a small favor. We set up our mailing program to send a short test message to the email address you gave us. All I need you to do is click the test link. That will tell our program that everything is as it should be, and we'll start sending the good stuff right away. Thanks in advance for your help..."
          That sounded like his aim wasn't to "take a poll" but rather to get them their content.

          To sum it up to make sense better, his first email sounded like he was asking for a favor (as pointed out word for word) whereas his second email sounded like clicking the link was to get them the content. I'm basically just saying that his first post was open to looser interpretation. I hope that clears up any feud/ground between us. Thanks for all of your contributions.
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  • Profile picture of the author Zeus66
    It is purpose-dependent, too. I have one very small list (under 100 currently) that I only send exclusive offers of a high-ticket nature to. It's single opt-in. I know most of the recipients from previous purchases and contacts. Making them confirm would have been silly redundancy. So, always factor your ultimate purpose for a list into your decision making.

    John
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  • Profile picture of the author Trieu
    Double optins are the best because it prooves that your subscriber is really interested in what you have to offer
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  • Profile picture of the author macchiavelli
    I also find that when I do single optin that I get more subscribers but my conversions dont necessarily increase.

    So I just do the double opt.
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  • Profile picture of the author MassiveMarketer
    I would go for double opt-in. I've to agree, quality over quantity. Consider the fall outs. You might just end up less than what you were expecting.
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    • Profile picture of the author regska
      Just like others are saying, it really depends on your niche. But since you're here, let's assume that we're talking about the IM niche. I use double opt-in if the list is cold, for example, the person who opted in just saw my squeeze page in one of my articles or blog comments or forum posts, to make sure that they are interested.

      I use single opt-ins if the person is already a buyer. For example, I sold an ebook to a person and then on the download page, I have an opt-in form asking them to opt-in to receive future updates about the product that they purchased or if I have a new product in the future, same thing with my affiliates, I just ask them to opt-in to receive any notifications if I have a new product that they can promote, because the list is not cold already, they've done business with me prior to opting-in.
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  • Profile picture of the author Big Al
    There is no right and wrong.

    I wish I'd choosen an AR account that gave me a choice so I could try it and test the same squeeze page to two different lists and see what worked best.

    When I've got a bit more time I'll pay for a second autoresponder host and see what works best. There are lots of variables from the niche choice right down to where the traffic is coming from and the type of person on your list.

    Al
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Originally Posted by BradBergeron View Post

      The way I got it when I first read (and I read it quickly so that may be my problem) was that he was using his subscribers to see if his emails were getting through, not to allow them to get the content.

      And yes, my product is free as well, but you are missing out on future business because none of your emails (the one's including affiliate links) get to them because they never confirmed.

      Again, though, he certainly changed his wording in the 2nd post and I certainly get it - I've been in this business for a fair amount of time, and although I haven't always had a list, I have known what email marketing is for a long time:

      That sounded like his aim wasn't to "take a poll" but rather to get them their content.

      To sum it up to make sense better, his first email sounded like he was asking for a favor (as pointed out word for word) whereas his second email sounded like clicking the link was to get them the content. I'm basically just saying that his first post was open to looser interpretation. I hope that clears up any feud/ground between us. Thanks for all of your contributions.
      Brad, you have a fair comment. And part of it did come from a quick reading, and part of it did come from my own loose description of what I do. My bad...

      The wording we're discussing isn't sent via email. I use it to replace the standard "thank you page" service like Aweber provide.

      I never send emails to already-confirmed list members asking them to click a link just to see if the email is getting through. If they're on the list, it got through at least once already. That, to me, is the real reason to use confirmed opt-in for cold lists.

      I just don't like putting potentially negative thoughts in peoples' heads before they get the first exposure to what I really send. The default confirmation message for just about every service I've experienced introduces two.

      First, it raises the question of whether or not the subscriber wants to be on the list. Second, it introduces the idea that some might consider the email as spam. At that point, I don't want them getting either of those ideas, especially from me...
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      • Profile picture of the author Tony Marriott
        Both have their uses and places. A clear example is when you sell a product. To try and get a double opt-in after all they have already gone through is just pointless. Also they've paid money for your product so they will know who you are.


        Double opt-in is generally best when collecting emails from scratch. I.e. via give-aways or similar


        Of course , how you then mail these people will depend on whether they cry spam or not. Try and sell them stuff every day from day one and you will just hack people off and see the un-subscribe at least or even a spam complaint. No opt-in will protect you if your follow up email sequence is rubbish or too aggressive.


        38% is quite high though. I have certainly seen 20% but this can often be reduced by improving the the thank-you page. Aweber allow you to use a "smart video" version and even use your own custom web page. My suggestion is to create a short video explaining about the confirmation process and "lost" messages in the spam/junk folders etc. which will get you a far higher confirmation rate with double opt-in. Many people simply can't find the confirmation email and don't have the patience to look for it if it's not right in the in box!
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  • Profile picture of the author humbledmarket
    Banned
    Double opt in is the safest route to go if you want to try your best to avoid legal issues regarding spam complains. Sometimes people may submit their email but complete forget about it and wonder why they are getting all that spam from you.

    also if you're using aweber they are very cautious about such. And lastly think of it as saving you space so you pay for less people who don't really wnat to be on your list.
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  • Profile picture of the author Landis
    i see mostly everyone is for the double optin..but i have had different results. double optin rates are wayy lower than single optin and the reasoning that the prospect is more "qualified" because they jumped through an extra hoop doesnt ring true with me. The percentage of clicks I get from either lists are almost the same, except the single optin list is larger, resulting in much more clicks. Also, regarding the useage of fake emails can be true of either methods. Alot of users these days have a main email address and a throwaway one they use for optins etc, so having someone confirm there throwaway email isnt going to make them any more likely to buy. The only positive I see to having a double optin is if you get spam complaints, but if youre giving out solid info and not bombarding them with offers, I dont see how that would be a problem. Disclaimer: Im pretty new to list building but I have done extensive testing on my relatively small lists.
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