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Martin Cogburn
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    Opt-in Settings

    Single Vs. Double Opt-in

    Whether to use single or double (aka confirmed) opt-in is a decision you need to make when you're setting up your SmartForm. There are advantages and disadvantages of both options, which we'll explain here right after we explain the difference between them. In addition, we've created a third option called Double-Opt In Optional, which is cool and which we'll also explain.

    What’s the difference between the two?

    Basically, the difference between single and double opt-in is that with single opt-in, your prospect fills out your form and they're immediately added to your list. With double-opt in, they'll be sent a confirmation email, containing a verification link, which they need to click in order to be added to your list. This added step ensures that the email address that was put in your SmartForm is actually owned by the person who typed it. Said another way, double opt-in makes it impossible for strangers (or hackers, or robots, or spammers) to add email addresses to YOUR list which are not owned by them.

    Optional double opt-in

    If you make it so that double opt-in is optional, you will still be able to mail people who only single opted-in, but you're NOT protecting your database from bad addresses. The upside of Optional Double-Opt In is that the contacts who DO click the confirmation link that they receive will be double-opted in and be likely to receive better inbox delivery than your single-opt in contacts. This is because we send all email to contacts who've double opted-in from a different server with a better, cleaner reputation.

    Why would I want to make my users double opt-in?

    Requiring that your subscribers double opt-in is a great practice if you want to keep your list squeaky clean; it can improve the inbox deliverability of your e-mails while  ensuring a higher probability that the people on your list will actually engage with your emails. You may get fewer subscribers because of this small extra hoop you’re making people jump through, but, you’ll know that the subscribers you do get are those who really and truly want to hear from you and ultimately your list will be of greater value to you. Plus, we also send email to those who've double opted-in from a server with a better, cleaner reputation, as well.

    Of course the drawback is that there's an extra step for people to take before they are successfully added to your list. Since some marketers feel that this is too much of a hurdle, they'll choose to use Single Opt-In.

    The decision is up to you, but WE RECOMMEND DOUBLE OPT-IN REQUIRED for all forms. We believe that the benefits are easily worth losing the few contacts who don't complete the signup process.

    If a contact has previously double-opted into your list and fills out another double opt-in form, you don't need to worry about them confirming the double opt-in a second time - their status will remain 'double opt-in' whether they confirm or not.

    Confirmation Instructions Page

    This should be a page where you thank the person for filling out the form, but let them know that they're not QUITE done yet, and you instruct them to go immediately to check their email and click the verification link in the confirmation email. You might also tell them to "whitelist" your email address so that your emails are even surer to go to their inbox! We've provided a generic, default "confirmation instruction" page for you to use in case you're not concerned with customizing it.

    "Thank You" Page

    The "Thank You Page" is the web page someone lands on when they click submit on your Smart Form or, if you are using double opt-in settings, the page they'll be taken to when they click the double opt-in link in the confirmation email.

    This is your opportunity to thank the person for giving you their info and for you keep in touch. After all, these people have just given you their contact info and have requested to hear from you. Now that's something to be thankful for. This is also a great place to tell people what they should do next ("Go check your email for your free thing...", or "Keep your eyes peeled for our monthly newsletters").

    How do I create one?

    You have three options for "Thank You" pages:

    1. Use the generic one we've provided if you'd rather not create your own.
    2. Use a Landing Page you've created within your ONTRAPORT account by choosing it from the dropdown.
    3. Use some other web page that lives elsewhere on the web. Now you're ready to set the thank you page by typing the URL into the space provided.

    This Thank You page overrides the "Thank You URL" setting of double opt-in messages in Administration > Double Opt-in / Invoice Manager. If your contact fills out this form, they will visit the Thank You page you indicate here.

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