This week’s ExchangeTalk is all about making money with free products on your WordPress site with iThemes Exchange. Yes, you read that correctly. We’re going to dive into how to set up free products for your customers and get them to join your site and emailing lists to get them coming back for more.
Planting the Seed
When a customer comes to your store, they already think there may be something of value for them there. By providing them a free product, not only can you provide them that value, but you can also get them to register on your site and join your email lists, which provides tremendous value for you as well.
Whenever you send out emails from your site, be it a weekly or monthly newsletter, or a special offer or coupon code on products in your store, this will be sent out to all your customers on the list (including those who only got free products) and will once again bring your site to their attention. Sounds pretty good, huh? Let’s get started.
Setting Up Your Product in iThemes Exchange
First you’ll need to set up your product within iThemes Exchange. For this example, we’ll create a free Ebook as a new digital download.
After making sure the price is set to $0.00 and that the product has at least one downloadable file, go below to the advanced options.
Under the Free Offers tab, you may want to change the Buy Now Button and Purchase Button Text to something more appealing like “Download Free.”
Setting Up Your Email List
Next you’ll need to setup your email list of choice. There are lots of email list add-ons for Exchange, including AWeber, Campaign Monitor, Get Response, MailChimp, and Mad Mimi. These add-ons can be purchased separately, or all together as part of the Email Add-On Pack. You will also have access to these add-ons if you purchase or already own the Exchange Pro Pack, Developer Suite, or Toolkit packages.
Depending on which client you choose, the process may be somewhat different, but should be fairly straightforward, with helpful information inside the settings page. We’re going to go ahead and use MailChimp for this example.
First we’ll need to go into the Add-ons tab within the Exchange menu in the Dashboard and scroll down until we see MailChimp. Here you’ll notice a gear on the far right next to the button to enable or disable the add-on. This will take you to the add-ons settings.
As you’ll see, the first thing we need here is the MailChimp API Key for your account. Go to MailChimp’s site and sign in to your account, or create one if you do not already have one. Navigate to your account settings page, and under the Extras tab, you’ll find the option to view or create your API Keys.
Once you have your API Key, copy and paste it back into iThemes Exchange. When you do so, this will populate the MailChimp List drop-down with all the email lists associated with your account, allowing you to select the one you want to use. You may also decide to change the default Sign-up Label as well, perhaps to something a bit more enticing like “Receive coupons and special offers”.
Lastly, it is recommended that you keep the Enable Double Opt-in box checked. This will allow MailChimp to send your subscribers a second email to confirm their subscription, which helps keep your emails out of their spam folders.