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How to get started with onsite marketing

6 min

Converting more website visitors.

Whether you’re a beginner in marketing or an experienced professional, you want to make that happen. To achieve that goal, we need to make our marketing messages relevant and keep the overall visitor experience positive.

That’s what onsite marketing is all about — adding the human layer into marketing communications on ecommerce websites.

What is onsite marketing?

Onsite marketing is a strategy of combining all the visitor engagement tools on websites (popups, bars, signup forms, onsite notifications) into one cohesive plan. By combining them, businesses can decide what tools to use and when, resulting in a more organized strategy.

Using visitor behavior and segmentation data is also a big part of onsite marketing that ensures that all the marketing activities that happen within a website are as relevant and personalized for visitors as possible.

Why onsite marketing?

The ultimate goal of onsite marketing is to give you the best chance to grow your business where you have the most control: your website.

Before we get to specifics, let’s quickly answer the question: how does onsite marketing differ from what you’re doing right now?

With onsite marketing, you can:

  1. Use segmentation, targeting, and visitor behavior data to create customer journeys on websites
  2. Create marketing messages on websites that show up only for visitors who meet predefined criteria (behavior, purchasing history, visited pages, etc.)
  3. Run A/B tests of onsite marketing messages to find out which offers have the most value for specific visitor groups
  4. Combine all onsite channels (website popups, embedded signup forms, chatbots, landing pages, live chat, onsite notifications, banners, bars, etc.) into one strategy
  5. Personalize website visitor experiences at scale to maximize engagement and boost customer loyalty

As you can see, onsite marketing focuses on engaging visitors by focusing on data and visitor behavior. This differs from traditional, one-size-fits-all strategies.

The benefits of using onsite marketing are worth pursuing:

  • Lower spending on paid advertising
  • More personalized shopping experiences on websites
  • Higher sales and conversions

Many businesses have found that they don’t need more traffic on their websites to start getting more sales. If they invest more time to focus on the experiences of their visitors right now, they can get better results almost immediately.

Read about these success stories: Onsite marketing guide

Examples of onsite marketing campaigns

Here are a few examples of how online businesses do onsite marketing:

  • Using onsite notifications to drive traffic and get sales from the homepage
  • Sharing promotions while keeping the website clean
  • Separating desktop and mobile popups

Driving traffic and sales on the homepage with onsite notifications

Onsite notifications are a channel that allows you to share marketing messages in a social media-style personal inbox on a website. They are a simple way to increase visitor engagement while keeping your homepage clean.

Here’s how the visitor finds a product page through onsite notifications on Asphalte’s home page.

Onsite notifications are especially effective for:

  • Driving traffic to product and collection pages
  • Sharing easily clickable discount codes
  • Promoting special deals and offers

OddBalls, one of the UK’s most popular underwear brands, used onsite notifications to share an extra discount code to motivate shoppers to buy. Also, they added a few messages about newly launched products to raise awareness of them among visitors.

According to Dan Mitchell, Ecommerce Manager OddBalls, all campaigns performed well, achieving CTRs as high as 25%. One of the reasons why this onsite marketing example was successful is that it allowed visitors to discover the offers “at their own pace.” 

Sharing promotions while keeping the website clean

Many ecommerce businesses have the problem of prioritizing homepage content. Sales, product launches, announcements, special offers, you name it—sharing all of them on the homepage is the best idea since that page often gets the most clicks.

But there’s only so much you can add to one homepage.

Onsite marketing helps solve this problem in a few ways:

  • Visitor targeting: You can choose to show marketing messages only to specific visitor groups (say, you can show a “welcome back” popup with a nice discount to returning visitors who have not bought anything)
  • Parge-level targeting: You can also show specific messages to visitors who have viewed particular pages on your website (for example, you can show a campaign with an exclusive discount on dresses only to a visitor who viewed three products from that category)
  • Onsite notification feed: Since the feed with onsite notifications can contain multiple messages, you can squeeze in many offers to support your current marketing goals (see the example below)

For example, Cosmoparis has two campaigns in the feed: the one with the last prices and another one with an upsell promo offer on a specific product category.

Separating desktop and mobile popups

Mobile popup campaigns should be treated differently from desktop ones.

Here’s why:

  • Google has strict guidelines for mobile popups
  • Mobile visitors might not have the same internet speed
  • Desktop popups don’t look good on mobile

In addition to these technical reasons, there’s a practical one. Over 33% of online shoppers prefer to buy on mobile, your mobile visitors could also generate a lot of orders. So, you need to create separate (and often different) campaigns for desktop and mobile visitors to your online store.

For example, you can give mobile visitors a discount code during a sale. Or, some other incentive to convert first-time visitors into subscribers or customers.

On the other hand, your desktop visitors can get another incentive—this is where your customer behavior data will come in handy, as you’ll know what incentives work better for each visitor groups.

How to get started with onsite marketing

The basic strategy for starting with onsite marketing is.

1. Collect and analyze customer data

Purchase history, browsing behavior, the most popular products, shopping experience feedback—analyze this data to be able to understand how to optimize the visitor experience on your website.

2. Get your onsite marketing tools

You need only a few tools to get started (many of which you are probably using already): website experience apps, popup apps, onsite notification apps, etc. Many tools include multiple marketing channels in one, too.

3. Treat all onsite tools as parts of one strategy

Traditionally, businesses used multiple tools (say, popups and bars) to display the same message to all visitors. Instead, run several campaigns with the same tools personalized for different visitors or spread your marketing messages across all the tools based on their engagement rate.

4. Do A/B testing and experiment

Elements of onsite marketing campaigns (texts, visuals, format, etc.) can perform differently when displayed to various visitor groups, so testing and experimenting are essential.

5. Improve and gamify customer experience

Use the engagement data with your campaigns to create an even more personalized experience for your customers. Gamification also counts: if your customers like quizzes and spin to win popups, they should be able to get them once in a while.


Marketing on a website, or onsite marketing, is an essential component of a comprehensive digital marketing strategy. By leveraging these strategies, you can effectively reach and engage their target audience, drive conversions, and achieve their marketing goals.

Pawel Lawrowski
Pawel Lawrowski
Pawel is the Head of Growth at Wisepops. Pawel has 10+ years experience in marketing and sales in the SaaS industry and enjoys sharing his knowledge with others. Connect with him on LinkedIn.