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Why WordPress is NOT Your Email Marketing Friend

I’m a huge fan of WordPress, my website is on this platform and I love how you can customize the look of your site by adding a multitude of plugins.

What I don’t like about WordPress is that, out-of-the-box, it’s not equipped to help you with your email marketing.

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This means that you’ve gotta do your own digging around to find what works for you and your sites theme.

Not cool.

Below are just some of the reason’s why you should not be using WordPress as your all-in-one email marketing platform and what you can do instead.

#1: You can’t run your email list from WordPress

Although, in saying this, I have heard of people doing this. But it’s not too long after they reach 100+ subscribers that things start to go pear-shaped.

Yes, WordPress is a robust platform and yes, it does have some capabilities to send email notifications…

Those are designed to notify registered users about your latest blog post, not as a way to communicate with them!

Instead, you’ll need to add a plugin for your email service provider. Which will allow people to sign up to your email list the correct way. Avoiding can-spam violations and misusing hosting provider terms. Your email service provider sends out your emails.

If you’re looking for options, consider ConvertKit, Mailchimp, Constant Contact and Active Campaign.

All these email service providers have WordPress plugins that you can install on your site and set up to manage your email list subscribers.

Blog subscriptions do not equal email list subscribers

I don’t know about you, but I was more than a little confused by the number of blog registrations I had on my WordPress site when I first got started.

I thought those same people were also my email list, causing a ton of confusion when I was sending out newsletters.

There are many plugins that allow your readers to sign up to your blog feed and get this delivered direct to their inbox…

But these people may not be on your email list at all.

They are not one and the same thing!

Yes, you can see their email addresses on your WordPress site, but you CANNOT email them nor can you add them to your email list.

This is why you want to make sure you’re adding content upgrades to your blog posts. Or include an email subscription form in each blog post, so that those blog subscribers can also be converted to email list subscribers.

Win:win.

#3: Lead generation is not included

Sadly, most WordPress themes don’t include lead generation — which is kinda suckie because this is one of the best ways to build your email list.

To combat this, you’ll need to either consider changing your theme to one that does include lead generation (options include: Thrive, Divi and OptimizePress) or you’ll need to consider some lead generation plugins.

Think LeadPages, OptinMonster, Bloom, Sumome etc.

These lead generation tools will allow you to create many ways for your readers to get on your email list. From pop-up forms to inline forms to welcome mats, make lead generation super simple for yourself and your readers.

If you don’t, your WordPress site is going to be ineffective at helping you get the right people onto your email list.

#4: Sidebar opt-in only

Generally, WordPress only provides you with the option to add a sidebar email opt-in form.

This does depend on the theme you’re using, but for the most part, the basic WordPress themes don’t provide you with a lot of options.

This means that you’ve only got one chance to capture a reader onto your email list. Ah crap, that’s not gonna cut it!

You want to have many opt-in forms on your blog so that no matter where your reader is on your site, they have a way to get onto your email list.

You’ll need to use lead generation tools like those mentioned in the previous point and then, you’ll want to add these opt-in forms to:

  • your blog posts,
  • your sidebar,
  • at the end of a blog post,
  • as a pop-up based on a reader’s actions while on your site

You can take it a step further and create content upgrades as well. So that for each blog post, you’ve got a custom opt-in form that relates to the post that your reader is consuming.

#5: Analytics are light

When you first install WordPress, one of the first things it will prompt you to do is to install the Jetpack plugin.

And while this is a good place to start, it doesn’t provide you with nearly enough information to help you with your email marketing strategies.

Instead, what you need to do is install Google Analytics. There are many ways to do this, but the simplest is to add the Yoast plugin and add your Google Analytics ID to this plugin.

Once you’ve done that, Google Analytics will start gathering information for you that you can then use to inform your email marketing strategies.

It will also help you decide on which content your readers love the most, so that you can then repurpose or expand that content further.

You cannot get this information from Jetpack.

Now it’s Your Turn

Now that you know how bad WordPress is from an email marketing perspective, you can take steps to improve your own site. Install the right plugins and maybe upgrade your theme.

I use OptimizePress on my website and love that it’s an all-in-one WordPress theme coupled with lead generation, sales funnels, and email marketing tools.

What will you do to improve your email marketing on your WordPress site?

Lise Cartwright Lise Cartwright is an experienced Freelance Writer, Full-Time Author, and Coach who’s on a mission to help savvy blog & biz owners be successful in their side hustle or creative business utilizing proven email marketing strategies and monetization methods. Oh yeah, she’s also addicted to Netflix, pretty shoes, and magic.

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