by Todd

March 25, 2017

how to make an email list image

Email lists are gold, it’s traffic ready to buy. This post will show you how to make an email list to improve your online business today.

I’m sure you know how important building an email list is for your business, but chances are you’re not quite sure how it’s done.

You’ll hear gurus repeating the over-used phrase, “The money is in the list!!” thousands of times, without actually taking the time to tell people exactly how to do it.

That’s why I decided to write this article, to show you how to make an email list with simple steps.

It’s really easy and it will be a massive benefit to your business. 

Why the Money’s In the List:

Email lists are literal gold mines. Let’s review the concept quickly..

They’re people who are interested in a specific topic, in other words, niche leads.

And when you have a bunch of leads at your fingertips, the sales are right around the corner.

The awesome part is there is no limit.

You see, building a list is about building trust. Building trust is important because people buy from those they trust. It’s like getting a referral from a friend vs. a shady character.

So an email list can become a marketing machine, the traffic is the fuel, and sales are the final product.

As long as there’s traffic, there will be sales.

So how do I build a list as a complete beginner? 

Image that links to a free course to learn how to build your own online business and how to build an email list.

How to Build an Email List?

To build a list, we’ll need to work on creating a nice sign-up form.

There are a lot of different ways to build a list, but we’ll focus on one method in this article. On that note, there should always be a sign-up form somewhere on your website, the sidebar is a decent place to start.

So to build a list, we’ll need to give people a reason to sign-up. We’re bribing them so to speak with something in return for their email address.

Asking them to subscribe for future articles is usually not enough.

We’ll Need a Giveaway:

A giveaway is usually a short eBook, a guide, course, something of value to your niche audience.

You can write a few pages of unique content or copy and paste your most popular articles into one file to create a book.

It doesn’t have to be overly complicated.

You don’t need to spend months writing it. 

Obviously, the more value the better, but it’s fine to put together a quick giveaway.

Next, format it into a proper eBook format. Then, create a cover image for it.

You can hire someone to create a cover image for you from Fiverr or you can create a cover for your book.

Once you have a free giveaway, it’s time to build the landing page where people can sign-up to receive your gift.

Building Elegant Landing Pages for Free:

When you first start working online, chances are you don’t have the budget for the best tools.

Those that do should look into Thrive Architect – it’s what we use on this site and it’s amazing.

  • You can create killer landing pages, optin forms, split testing, it’s got everything.

Not to worry, there are free options for you.

On the other hand, the paid list building themes are usually much more powerful and responsive than their free counterparts.

You can easily find an elegant one-page landing theme for under $40! 

But for now, let’s stick to the free themes. As it turns out, the online business center that I recommend has a unique website builder with a wide selection of themes.

And yes – some of those themes are designed for lead collection.

Here’s a screenshot of one of the free themes you can use to build a list: 

A picture showing an sample template from Thrive Architect, a great way to make an email list.

You’ll need to customize the theme a bit to suit your needs, but it has all the options you need to start building a list.

Wealthy Affiliate has over 2,000 themes to choose from, some of which are better at collecting leads than the one in the screenshot.

The cool thing about Wealthy Affiliate is that themes are not only made for building a list – that’s just one part.

They’re full themes with blog functions and menus. 

But if you already have a website, a neat trick I figured out is to host another theme on an add-on domain.

The steps to do this vary depending on your host.

An add-on domain is another, separate part of your website, where you can install separate themes and content.

For example, I can make an add-on domain for my site, and it might look like; 

And that will be like a separate site, where I can install one-page themes.

So once the add-on domain is created, install WordPress, and login.

[thrive_link color=’red’ link=’’ target=’_self’ size=’medium’ align=’aligncenter’]Become Awesome At Online Business: Here’s How >>[/thrive_link]

Next, Find a Theme for Your Landing Page:

I recommend one-page themes with no sidebars, menus, or footers.

This part of our website is only for sign-ups. Keep the focus on the content and minimize distractions.

So this is where we’ll list our free giveaway’s cover image, the features it provides, some call to action text, and a sign-up form.

There are a lot of one-page sign-up themes from WordPress. Just head to the theme menu and search for free landing pages or opt-in forms.

Here’s a screenshot of the top three results for free landing page templates:

A picture showing three squeeze page templates from Thrive Architect.

The third one is perfect. 

Install the theme and integrate it with your email management service, I recommend aWeber.

I can’t explain exactly how to do this as each email management service is different, but it shouldn’t be too difficult, and there are likely lots of tutorials to follow.

Once you have the theme on your add-on domain, connected to your email service, with a cover image and content – it’s time for traffic.

Grow Your Email List with Traffic:

We now have a nice opt-in form where we can collect email addresses.

The next step is traffic. 

What is the fastest source of traffic for building a list? It’s hard to say, but one I like is Facebook ads.

Facebook ads are relatively cheap and if you follow all the rules you can see some nice results.

This is perfect for fast traffic. 

 Image that links to a free eBook where you can learn to drive targeted traffic to your website or online business.

There are a lot of other paid traffic companies you can look into too.

If you regularly write content for your main site, I recommend linking out to your opt-in page within your articles as often as possible. Make sure you’re linking the reader to relevant content.

This will lead to more sign-ups as well. 

So as you can see, it’s not that difficult to build a list fast.

You can also skip the add-on domain idea completely and advertise your offer directly on your main site, in the sidebar, as a pop-up, or ribbon.

Just remember, building a list is very important, and you should be doing it from day one.

Need Help Making Money Online?

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Learn More About List Building:

If you want to learn more about list building and how to create your own internet business, our recommended training course has everything you need.

Thanks for taking the time to read this article.

If you have any questions about how to make an email list, leave them below!

About the author 


Hi, I’m the founder of Learn to Grow Wealth Online. My goal is to help you create a brilliant online business. One that is profitable and will grow wealth for you and your loved ones well into the future. If you're willing to put in the effort, I can help you create your own source of online income.

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  1. Thanks Todd for this post! I need something to spur me to action and start building my list.
    It’s crazy, I know it’s something I need to do but I keep putting it off.
    With your tips I will definitely get round to it very soon. I particularly like the idea of using Facebook ads for fast traffic.
    I wonder do you get more sign-ups from your slide in forms or the fixed opt-in form in the sidebar?
    Anyway, thanks again for the lesson in how to make an email list.

    1. Hey Peter,

      Great question and I get it. You have to dedicate some time to your email marketing. In the long run, I think it makes a huge difference in the success you have online.

      You can also use it to boost traffic and rankings by sending out your latest posts to your email list. But marketing to them versus not marketing to an email list is like not striking while the iron’s hot.

      So here’s what I’ve found.. I like the fixed widget because it always keeps something on the side for the user to view and hopefully play on their subconscience. The conversion rate is low for the amount of impressions versus sign ups, but technically, I get my most sign ups with it.

      I’ve boiled it down to 2 fade in’s. They’re annoying, but convert well and their very relevant for what I teach on this site.

      What works the best? I learned this technique a year ago and have been applying as often as I can. I made a simple landing page with a big Aweber opt-in.

      I link to it through my content with again, relevant links and the opt-in percentage is almost 25%. That’s huge versus with the fade in’s between 6% to 8%.

      So, creating a landing page with whatever you offer that helps somebody is the way to go.

      Thanks for your feedback Peter and you should give yourself a hard time. You’ve been an online business owner for over 3 years and I’ve seen your content ranking all the time.

      Take advantage of that traffic and get people signed up. The expense will pay for itself in no time.

      Good to hear from ya,

  2. Amazing write ups, Todd! I’m planning on using clickfunnels to create the entire funnel and to use Facebook ads to reach as many people as possible.

    I know using Facebook ads is a great way to build an email list, but what about advertising affiliate offers, and running campaigns with the objective of sending traffic to affiliate links?

    1. Hi Sam,

      Thanks for your feedback on my posts and leaving a comment on our how to make an email list article here. Much appreciated.

      As for your idea, this is nothing new and it’s pretty ineffective. Put yourself in the users shoes, most people don’t convert that quick.

      I’ve done a series of this style of marketing and with a number of products and it doesn’t work well.


      People tend to weigh buying decisions and once they’re educated then convert to a purchase. Not to say this can’t happen, but in general, going directly from advertisement directly to affiliate link doesn’t produce more than it costs.

      Now if your landing page is very informative and leads the user to other helpful posts regarding the product, you’ll find they’ll convert better.

      I’ve done a lot of PPC and your odds are much great by creating a relative ad that’s based on some sort of internet search, then link that person to helpful content and entice to do two things…

      1. Opt-in by giving them an eBook or something for free that helps them.

      2. Link them to a review which then links them to the affilaite product.

      I look at a blog or affiliate site/niche site as the greatest way to convert people because it’s a holistic approach to marketing so to speak.

      You always want to be working the opt-ins, but really with a niche site every post you create should have the purpose of targeting traffic. And actually every post that you write and internal link that you use to send someone to another page is essentially a funnel and series of landing pages.

      Add in email marketing and you’ve got the highest chance to convert that traffic. If not, you’re paying for traffic then losing them once they click away.

      For best results, you should always design a niche site based on ranking content first before adverting.

      If quick results is what you’re looking for vs. building an authoritative niche site, you can build min niche sites.

      Wealthy Affiliate is doing a 4 week course on this. I just watched last weeks (Week 1) and thought it was a great way to get inspired about finding an easy niche product that you can rank quickly and start earning affiliate commissions.

      Check out the Webinar right here.
      Hope that helps,

  3. I have been putting off list building; but after reading your post, I have a renewed sense of the importance of building a list.

    You have given some good suggestions. I am bookmarking your page so I can come back and use your kind instructions.

    Thanks for an informative and helpful post.


    1. Hi Jeannie,

      That’s great to hear. I think every online marketer puts of building their email list when they first get started.

      I know I did.

      But you really do need to invest the time and creative thought process that goes into email marketing.

      It becomes more apparent the greater you build your list in terms of sales and site traffic.



  4. Hello, Todd!

    Your article has been extremely helpful for me in order to better understand the process of creating an email list and gathering emails.

    I will follow your advice and recommendations and hopefully, I will create a worthwhile list. I have to create an E-book with useful info.

    I’m native of Medellin, Beautiful place right?

    Wish you the best


    1. Hey Santiago,

      How cool to have you comment. Love Medellin, eternal Springtime isn’t too bad.

      You definitely want to work on your email marketing campaigns, but some thought and time into it. Create something that people will value, and then and helpful email series.

      Thanks for your feedback parcero, q tengas feliz fin de semana!


  5. I am terrible for building my email list. Everyone keeps telling me it is the MUST have thing for any affiliate marketer but I always struggle to find good landing pages.

    I am glad you have shown me the Fiverr gig to get a good giveaway.

    Do you find any particular color combinations gives a landing page a better CTR than others?

    1. Hey Philip,

      I was the same way, I never wanted to build an Email list or an email marketing program.

      I finally did, and once you complete the process, you understand the affiliate market cycle for success.

      My email campaigns could be better, and I certainly try to provide value, but it’s something you’ve got to put some time and thought into.

      I’m always focused on the targeted content for Google results or YouTube, but this is a critical step.

      Thanks for your kind feedback. As for landing pages, everything is a landing page when you think about it.

      I prefer really clean templates or simply a clean site. The focus is on the content or photos that help depict the message better than content.

      It should be simple, appeal to your niche audience, and be convincing as to how your product or service will benefit the person reading.

      I have found that incorporating native ads by using links to the landing page convert much higher, mine are at 22.4% conversion rates right now.



  6. Hi Todd! This was a very helpful post. I printed it and will save it for later. I don’t have an email list on my site yet so this info comes in handy.

    You offer a lots of very important tips here. Thanks for that! I have to check other content on your site as well.

    1. Cool Toni, happy to help.

      Once you start getting traffic to your site, you need to have some sort of email capture system in place.

      It can change and adapt over time just as your site will.

      As for traffic, if you have any questions on keywords, placement, white seo for rankings, check out our Free Traffic eBook.

      This will teach you how to target traffic in your niche to bring in the traffic and increase online sales.



  7. Hi Todd!

    Thank you for your article. I knew that email list where important, but I have never realized how powerful they could be.

    One thing that I would like to mention to you is that I have had bad experiences with these free eBooks. Not all them, but the majority have very poor content, and instead of being engaged with the site, they push me away.

    It would be nice to know what to do after getting the list.

    1. Hi Antonio,

      Agreed, most of the PLR books are not going to cut it. I think you’ll do best to create some original content that’s helpful to your niche audience.

      Then create a free eBook out of it. You can even make it from some of your content on your website.

      Regardless, if you want to build an email list that will really have an effect, provide them with something of value and your list will grow and grow.

      Then provide more helpful emails and occasional product that also benefit that same niche audience.



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