Thrive Leads Plugin Review and Bonus
Thrive Leads Plugin Review

Thrive Leads Plugin Review & Bonus: Easy Email List Building With One Plugin

In this post I am going to show you how Thrive Leads Plugin can rapidly grow your email list with a huge range of optin possibilities (that is being added to each month).

Thrive Themes keep on creating better and better plugins to help us increase our email lists at amazing speeds.

Thrive Leads Plugin is focused on optin forms and collecting email addresses, and all at a very affordable price.

I love LeadPages, a great tool for doing the same thing, but that costs over $300 a year minimum, this costs only $59. One time payment. And they keep adding new features all the time.

What Features Does Thrive Leads Include?

Thrive Leads Plugin includes a huge list of options when it comes to building your list.

First there are the options you have for your optin forms:

  • Light Box Popups (with lots of options - including exit intent)
  • Header Sticky Ribbon (like the hello bar)
  • 2 Step Optin Forms (often more successful)
  • Optin Forms Inside Pages or Posts (Inline Forms)
  • Slide In Forms (usually at the bottom)

Then there are the other must have features that any successful Email Building Plugin have:

  • Drag and Drop (WYSIWYG) Editor (No tech skills required)
  • A/B Split Testing (so you can test what works best)
  • Analytics (see what is working best)
  • Mobile Responsive Forms (work on any mobile device)
  • Speed Optimized (does not slow your site down)
  • Slide In Forms (usually at the bottom)

Here's a Quick Thrive Leads Demo

Below is a video walk through of Thrive leads if you want to see it live:

  • ​how fast you can create forms
  • how you can assign them to various groups of pages/posts
  • how to do A/B testing

Optin Forms, Popups and More

Thrive Leads Sidebar Optin FormLet’s take a more detailed look at the variety of optins you can easily create with Thrive Leads.

Sidebar Optin

You will probably see this optin I just made (took me about 5 minutes) on my sidebar, but here is an image just in case I have changed it when you read this.

It is very simple to make from the templates, and then add to your sidebar as a widget.

Popup Lightbox

The lightbox popup has become a standard when collecting emails (and I have spoken about this before in detail).

Thrive leads gives you lots of options when it comes to your lightbox. Not only the template (layout, style, image etc) but also how it appears:

  • Show on page load (straight away)
  • Specific percentage or point on page (wait a while so reader gets into page)
  • Specific time (after x seconds on the page)
  • On Exit (my favorite, wait until they are leaving them ask them)

They also have an option for what to do on mobile, because it is harder to capture exit intent (when someone is leaving). They have it all covered.

Slide In Form

This is a popular replacement for the lightbox popup because it is less annoying. Basically this is a form that slides in from a corner (often bottom right) as the user gets towards a specific portion of the page (usually the end of a page or post).

This has the same options available as the popup form above, but also the position it slides in from. Here is an example template from Thrive Leads:

Thrive Leads Slide In Example

Header Ribbon (like Hellobar)

The header ribbon is also a popular email capture method used on many websites. It was made popular by Neil Patel and the Hellobar, but is now seen everywhere.

This is a slim bar that appears at the top of your bar and stays there even when the user scrolls. Before you always needed another plugin to do it, now it is available as an option on Thrive Leads!

Here is what it looks like:

Thrive Leads Sticky Ribbon

Forms Within Pages or Posts (Inline Forms)

Sometimes the best way to get an email is with a signup in the middle or at the end of a blog post. I often do this by offering a specific guide or extra that comes with the blog post, and this has an awesome optin rate.

Now you can easily create optins with Thrive Leads and place them right in your page or post – right where you need them!

No tech skills required, no screwing around with other plugins or programming or any other nonsense. Just design it and place it with a shortcode! (not sure what a shortcode isread more about it here, but it is easy!)

Two Step Optin Forms

This is another marketing technique that is having great results right now – the 2 step optin.

The idea is that you can turn any link, button or image into a place to collect optins. The user clicks on it and then a popup comes up where they give their details.

The benefit of this is that it is very easy to collect emails from any kind of content, in any context. No fancy (or intimidating) optin forms needed. Just a simple image, link or button.

Brand New Feature (April 2015)

2 Step Optins with Micro-Commitment (QuickSprout style)

The Thrive Themes team just keep on innovating and improving their plugins, and this month is no exception!

This week they just announced a feature I have never seen in such a plugin, but has again been made famous by Neil Patel on Quick Sprout.

What is this feature?

It is a cheeky but very effective 2-step optin form, where the first step is just a simple question.

Why is this so effective? Because a simple question seems so innocent, but drives you to make a choice. Usually YES or NO.

Right. After you have made this choice, you are taken to the optin page where you are further asked to confirm that choice – this time to optin to something. You have already agreed with (YES), so why not continue to agree with your own opinion and optin? Cunning!

This is called a micro-commitment, and was popularised in a book called Influence, by Caldini. It really does work, despite how stupid it sounds. That is why Neil Patel uses it on his homepage.

And Thrive Leads is the only plugin doing this right now.

How does it look?

Here are the screen shots from the latest video from Thrive Themes.




Content Locker Optin – Brand New Feature (June 2015)

A very new thing that the Thrive team have implemented is a Content Locker with Email Option.

The basic idea is that you can “lock” a piece of content, or download and ask the visitor to optin to your email list to view it. There have been similar things done with Social Media Lockers beofre, but this one gives something far more valuable to you – an email to your list.

Obviously you need to have something good to get people to optin, but it is always worth trying out new ways to get email addresses, and the Thrive Leads plugin always has the latest features.

This is one example of what it can look like from their templates:

Thrive Leads Content Locker

Email Services Integration

Thrive Leads makes a big effort to integrate with all the main Email Services. And recently (May 2015) they have added direct API connections so you don’t even have to paste the code in from your email service.
All you have to do is login to your email service right from Thrive Leads and you are done!
All of these email services are supported within the plugin:

  • ​Aweber
  • MailChimp
  • GetResponse
  • iContact
  • Ontraport
  • ActiveCampaign

Plus, they have also added soem new and exciting features like connections to these services:

  • ​GoToWebinar
  • MailPoet
  • Signing up new leads with WordPress user accounts

Thrive Leads Email Integration
So all the big email systems, and any other that has HTML forms (which is almost all of them).

High Converting Form Templates

Thrive Leads also makes it easy to create high converting optin forms with their built in templates:
Thrive Leads Built In Templates
And all of these are easily customizable of course, so even if you don’t like something, you can easily change it!

Which Pages or Posts Should Your Optins Appear On?

Some of the other major lead gen plugins have had this feature in the past, but not all of them. And even if they did, the range of options was usually not so powerful as with Thrive Leads.

Simply put, Thrive Leads lets you decide where a “group” of optin forms are going to appear (except the two step and inline forms, they are added manually).

You can choose from:

  • Which pages or posts (all, none, home, blog, archives etc)
  • Which category or tags
  • Logged in or out
  • Specific pages to show on (or not to show on)

Actually the flexibility is incredible and sometimes mind boggling. But it is also simple and powerful to use.

An example: say you want a specific optin form to pop up for posts about writing. Then you just create it for the group “writing” and select that category of posts. Done.

A/B Split Testing And Analysis (What Works?)

Having all these options for creating forms and popups is awesome and fun. But what really matters is what works.

And with Thrive Leads you can also see how many sign ups you are getting for your forms.

That is basic analytics – which forms are working

Taking It Further With Split Testing

What is even better, is trying a few different variations of a headline, or button color or even popup timing to see what works better.

Then you can slowly tune your optin forms to get the maximum number of sign ups.

That is what Thrive Leads can also do for you.

AB Split Testing

Thrive Leads Pricing

Thrive Leads is very reasonably priced for what you get, and if you want to use it with other websites and clients (as an agency) there are also options too. 

Here are the pricing levels:

  • Single Site: $59
  • Unlimited Sites: $97
  • Agency License: $247

So for most people the costs is $59 (but if you have more sites, it is a very reasonable $97)

Final Thoughts On Thrive Leads

This is a replacement for Hybrid Connect if you have used that before, and I must say they have certainly exceeded what that could do.

With Thrive Leads you can easily add high converting optins anywhere on your site and test them to make sure they give you the most amount of leads you can get.

The only thing missing is Landing Pages, and you can get that too with the Thrive Content Builder. Which not only has Landing Pages, but the same great WYSIWGY drag and drop builder as this plugin.

Thrive Leads Bonus

If you buy Thrive Leads through my link, and I receive a commission for the sale, I will send you my Guide to Getting the Most out of Thrive Leads.

In this guide I show you step by step how to:

  • Setup Thrive Leads to drastically increase leads/opt-ins
  • Get the most of all the features in Thrive Leads for maximum emails/leads on your website
  • Choose the best options for your optin forms
  • Explode your list by using some high converting offers on your posts
  • Tweak your forms with testing to get even more leads
  • And lots more

What you have to do:


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Thrive Leads
  • Editor Rating

  • Rated 5 stars
  • Spectacular
$59 One Site, $97 Unlimited Sites (30 day guarantee - money back)

  • Thrive Leads
  • Reviewed by:
  • Published on:
  • Last modified: September 12, 2015
  • Features
    Editor: 98%
  • Ease of Use
    Editor: 99%
  • Price
    Editor: 99%
  • Support and Documentation
    Editor: 98%

Review Summary:

Thrive Leads is the simplest and most powerful list building plugin you can get for WordPress. It has optin form choices for all tastes, A/B Testing and analysis built in, and does not cost a fortune. Check out the review below and you will not be disappointed.


  • So Simple To Use - Will take you minutes to create optin forms
  • Variety of Optin Forms - Sidebar, Post, Popup, Slide In, 2 Step
  • High Coverting Optin Form Templates - Easy to customize
  • A/B Testing and Analysis - easy to test and improve conversion
  • One of the cheapest and most powerful on the market


  • Does not come with landing pages (can get with Thrive Content Builder)
  • Always need to create groups (where an optin appears) to create an optin - this is a minor annoyance

About the Author Ashley Faulkes

I am an Aussie WordPress Web Designer living in Switzerland. My goal is to make your WordPress website awesome, and get you more customers via SEO and amazing content. I am also a huge fan of the outdoors, so I am often in the mountains doing crazy stuff. I discovered blogging and online marketing while recovering from a shattered leg I got while skiing, and I have not stopped learning since! Join me in reaching for the top!

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