An opt-in refers to a request made by a brand to its customers regarding access to personal information, device features, and more, typically in connection with a website or mobile device. It involves prompting users for permission to utilize channels such as email, SMS, WhatsApp, push notifications, or location data. The effectiveness of an opt-in largely depends on its ability to clearly convey the value proposition to users.

Opt-ins can be categorized as either single or double. A single opt-in occurs when a subscriber submits their email address via a signup form and is subsequently added to the email subscribers list. Conversely, a double opt-in involves an additional step where the subscriber must click on a confirmation link in a follow-up email to confirm their subscription.

There are two types of prompts: native prompts, which are generic to the operating system (OS) of a device, and custom prompts. Native prompts are triggered by the mobile device’s OS and require manual adjustments to reverse permissions once granted. On the other hand, custom prompts are developed by marketers to request the same permissions as native prompts but offer opportunities for branding and delivering enhanced messaging about the value of opting in.

Creating custom prompts is often preferable as they provide more control over messaging. With custom prompts, marketers can send requests before the native prompt appears, allowing for additional opportunities to convey the value proposition. In contrast, native prompts offer less flexibility, as reversing permissions or modifying settings after a user declines is more challenging.

Additionally, it’s beneficial to “prime for a push” or other opt-in requests by clearly articulating the value proposition during onboarding and strategically choosing the timing for nudges, typically avoiding immediate requests after installation.