Email list building tools and methods


List Building


The Software platforms featured below have been reviewed by Marketing Channel and are our top recommendations for this technology category.


Email list building has long been considered as the most important online marketing strategy for lead nurturing and effective prospect targeting, based on their stage of awareness of a product and its benefits.

Building a list has become more and more challenging as the Internet matures.

Almost every well-designed website has some form of email list building tools and methodology in place.

The most effective method for email list building right now is to offer an ethical bribe (lead magnet), usually an ebook, pdf, or something of value, in exchange for a person’s contact details.

This serves two purposes, firstly you obtain the prospect’s email address and secondly by downloading your lead magnet, you can also identify that the prospect is interested in the product or service area, your lead magnet is about.

There are many types of lead magnets, here are some examples with ideas on how you could title them for maximum impact.

The free report (short & concise) – Free report reveals how to maximise your home value.

The cheat sheet or checklist (one-pager) – The 60-second longevity checklist.

The resource list (a collection or best-of compilation) – 101 Paleo Recipes You Can Cook within 10 Minutes.

Trial – Try the First Month for R10 Only or 14 Day Free TrialGuides (typically a “how-to” guide with a goal attached to it) – How to Dress for SuccessVideo training (effective for building authority) – Sell 10 Cars Today!

Email courses (brings traffic back to your website) – Become a Photoshop Pro in 7 Easy LessonsWhitepapers (good for B2B marketing) – Present an authoritative report with information on a specific topic.

Landing pages are also an excellent way to capture email addresses but often have other additional functions such as setting up a consultation or selling a product.

Websites also need several opportunities to capture an email address and for that reason, other email list building and opt-in tools are used.

Here are our top 5 recommended email list building tools:

Thrive Leads – The best solution for WordPress

OptinMonster – Best all-round solution

Sumo – Best free options

GetResponse – Best integrated with email

Typeform – Best for building forms

Please see the roundup reviews below.

Pricing Notice: Prices are known to fluctuate. However, the links within the reviews are continuously updated to bring you access to the latest pricing and special discounts where applicable.

Thrive Themes

Thrive Themes

Thrive Themes has Thrive Leads bundled into its suite of products. It is an all-in-one email list building tool.

You will need to purchase the whole product suite but it is arguably the most comprehensive, mid-price range, suite of website marketing products available today. ThriveLeads is WordPress only software.

The primary functionalities that Thrive Leads offers are: ThriveBox – a popup that can be displayed over your content “Sticky” Ribbon – a small bar that clings to the top of the web page and scrolls down with the user-inline Forms – can be inserted in the middle of your posts or at the bottom

2-Step Opt-in Forms – opens up a lightbox for visitors to complete

Slide-in – comes in from the bottom corner of your pages

Content Lock – unveil your best content only when visitors subscribeScroll Mat – drops in from the top of your page and pushes the content down, disappears after sign-up or use the close button

Multiple Choice Forms – provides more than one option to opt-in upon.



OptinMonster is another highly recommendable email list building tool, it has an easy to use, drag and drop builder interface.

The difference with OptinMonster is that it works on most web design platforms including WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, Magenta and HTML5.

They provide a multitude of different lead capture systems including, lightbox popups, slide-ins, sidebar forms, and floating bars.

Page-level targeting enables targeted messages to be displayed on separate pages and exit intent technology is also available.

The built- in analytics helps you see how each form is working for you and A/B Split testing is available, so you can test variations of headlines and content to discover what works best for you.

The primary functionalities that OptinMonster offers are:

Full-Screen Welcome Gate - a full-page dropdown to insert on any of your

Mobile Only Popup - most popups do not work on mobile, this one can be configured to only work on mobile if you wishFloating bar - can be anchored to the top or bottom of your pages

Slide-in Scroll Boxes - comes in from the bottom right-hand side of your screen.

Sumo logo


Sumo provides an excellent suite of tools to help you increase your website traffic as well as capture email addresses.

The starter package is free and their Welcome Mat is an email list building tool that provides massive conversions.

The applications work across many platforms including, WordPress, Shopify, Joomla, Drupal, Magento, Squarespace, Teachable and others. The primary functionalities that the Sumo suite offers are:

Welcome mat – shows above your page with email capture field

List builder – popup form with email collection field

Smart bar – sits above your menu


GetResponse Email Software

GetResponse is an email marketing software platform but it does offer some good email list building tools too. It is not as comprehensive as some of the other tools in this review section but it does make the list because of its ease of use, and that it is already integrated with its own email service, which will make it a lot easier for people who do not want to go through the process of importing raw HTML or link to API’s.

The basic GetResponse package starts at $15 per month for the email suite and includes the email list building tools.

The primary list building functionalities that GetResponse offer are:

Download box – easily deliver your lead magnets

Exit pop-ups – so visitors can sign up just prior to leaving your site

Scroll form – moves with your content

Fixed bar – anchored to the top of the visitor’s browser

Click here to get your free 30-day trial


Typeform logo

Typeform does forms, all kinds of forms, they look spectacular and professional.

These forms can be embedded into your website and Typeform provides a database where you can access all the answers to the questions on your forms.

The user interface makes it easy for visitors to complete your form questions and it even provides checkboxes, yes/no buttons, image insertion, and you can make it work on a slide by slide basis so that the form is not too long on your website and does not appear too intimidating to the user.

With Typeform you can create almost any kind of form or survey:

Lead generation

Sign up sheets

Order forms



Invitations and just about anything else.

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