Recently on yoogozi.com we wanted to show everyone a video about what the heck “yoogozi” meant, and to be reasonably sure they saw it.
The solution was to add what’s known as a “Welcome Gate” page.
Basically it works like this:
- when someone visits your home page, the Welcome Gate page will show. In our case, the page yoogozi.com/welcome will show
- it will show only once for the user (provided they don’t clear their browsing history); after that, it always goes to the normal home page, which is yoogozi.com
Normally I use leadpages for this, and a great discussion on how it works is here: http://blog.leadpages.net/welcome-gate-2-0-landing-page/ (click here for my affiliate link, I do get a commission if you purchase through it, and I do highly recommend leadpages!)
But with yoogozi.com, I wanted to more closely match the entire look and feel of the site, so that meant a custom page design.
I found this plugin to help me out: https://wordpress.org/plugins/redirect-to-welcome-or-landing-page/
I could probably have implemented it with some simple code in the header of the site, but why not use a plugin if it’s available?
Now here are the steps to implement this for yourself:
How to implement a Welcome Gate in WordPress
1. Create your layout
Keep it minimal so the user can concentrate on seeing the one thing you want them to see.
Make sure there’s no navigation
Include some type of action step. Often times it may be to signup for a list, but in our case we wanted people to see the video, so we made it auto play on the visit.
Include an option to “skip”, which in our case is the pronounced button.
2. Implement the Page itself
For the content, keep it short, clear, and to the point.
Disable any social sharing to keep it even clearer.
And although not absolutely necessary, make sure the page title and resulting permalink is something friendly, like “Welcome”.
3. Style the page
Don’t display a page title.
Keep it minimal but consistent with your site’s style.
Make sure the action button is clear.
4. If you have popup, disable it for that page
The page already serves as a popup in that it provides a call to action.
5. Install the Welcome Gate plugin
Grab it here and do the normal WordPress install: https://wordpress.org/plugins/redirect-to-welcome-or-landing-page/
6. Point Homepage within the Welcome Gate Plugin
Choose the page you want to show on the first visit.
Decide if you want it on all pages or not. In our case we wanted it only on the home page.
Use the URL of the page when you’re testing it, as in yoogozi.com/welcome.
For final testing, use a different browser so that you can clear all of the history and see the page show up every time.
What takes the longest is the styling, wording, and deciding what you want to show. The actual implementation is pretty quick!
So have fun with it!