Having an announcement bar on your website is a great way to highlight an important message, link or notification. It also encourages your users to make an action, sometimes while they’re scrolling through your page or post when it’s part of your fixed header.
You could go all nuts with CSS and style your notification bar. However if you haven’t brushed up your coding skills yet, then the three plugins I’ve suggested below will allow you to style the bar the same way you brand a WordPress theme. Pretty neat.
How to use a notification bar on WordPress
1. Time Sensitive Offers
To add a sense of urgency to your offers, a neat countdown encourages users to purchase a product, enrol in a course or signup to a service before the clock runs out. Be consistent and transparent with this method, however, since I’ve seen many a website use this as a marketing tactic and automatically reset the timer in a loop.
2. Lead Magnets
Lead magnets are a great way to motivate your users into sharing their email address for a useful resource. Some of the best magnets I’ve seen (and used) are tips, checklists, guides and templates. Lately, I’ve seen an increase in content upgrades (also known as resource libraries) and these encourage subscribers to stay on your list for longer.
3. Newsletter Signup
If you haven’t gone down the lead magnet route yet, but still want to encourage users to subscribe to your list, then a newsletter signup bar is ideal for your notification bar. A WordPress plugin and can be integrated with Mailchimp, Convertkit, FloDesk, Mailerlite and other email marketing services without a lick of code.
4. Course Registration
If you offer online courses and webinars, then the announcement bar is a prime location for you to encourage registrations! If you run webinars on certain dates (like Melyssa Griffin’s Pinterest webinar), be sure to add the date and time of your next webinar, or for bonus points use a countdown widget.
5. Product Launch
The announcement bar is absolutely perfect if you use WooCommerce to sell products on your website (or integrate with Shopify, Gumroad or Sellfy). Every new product needs a push in the right direction, and announcing it site-wide or on specific pages and posts helps drive traffic to your new product page.
WordPress plugins for announcement bars
As well as a ton of other features for designing layouts without the code, Elementor has a collection of popup and notification bars that you can customise through their template builder. Elementor allows you to choose from:
- Social media icons
- Newsletter signup
- Call to action buttons
- Offer countdown
- Static text
In fact, there’s almost no limit to what you can use and this is why Elementor is my #1 announcement bar tool on WordPress. That said, try to limit what you add to your bar so you don’t overwhelm users.
Price: $49/yr for one website, other plans available for multiple sites
Integrations: MailChimp, ConvertKit, Mailerlite, Campaign Monitor and more
With a variety of elements and ways to use the announcement feature, Hashbar is a great addition to your WordPress plugins. The free version includes basic styling, and different types of content. The free version has a bunch of options for you to choose from:
- Social icons
- Email signup
- Call to action button
- Post slider/ticker
- Static text
Price: Free version available with optional pro upgrades
Integrations: Mailchimp and Constant Contact with Pro plugin
If all you’re after is a simple, no-fuss newsletter signup bar for your WordPress website, MailChimp Top Bar does just the trick. This works with the MailChimp for WP plugin (it simply won’t work without it) and allows you to brand the announcement bar to match the style of your website with colours and fonts.
Price: Free version with optional pro upgrades
Integrations: Mailchimp of course!
I’d love to hear more about how you’re using your notification bars! If you’re not using one right now and would like to learn more about using them to get more subscribers, course enrollments, page visits and max your conversions, let’s talk shop.