Determine Where Your Sendgrid Subscribers Are Coming From

Posted on May 02, 2019


Establishing exactly how users joined your Sendgrid list and when allows you to segment better and see which marketing channels are performing best. We realize the value of knowing your customer so we’ve made this very easy to do in SG Widget.


It is made possible by our Custom Fields feature that integrates directly with Sendgrid Custom fields.

Note: To avail of this, you be an SG Widget Plus or Pro subscriber

Here’s how to make it work:

  • Create a custom field in Sendgrid called joined_from
  • Go back to SG Widget
  • In the edit page of a widget create a corresponding custom field with the following attributes:

    name: joined_from (the dropdown is autofilled with your Sendgrid custom fields)

    type: hidden

custom-field.jpg Screenshot of what your custom field should look like

  • Click Update
  • Copy the newly generated HTML into your website code
  • Set the value of the hidden field with Javascript by targeting the field ID.

Here is a snippet of Javascript ready to use on your site:

document.getElementById("sg_custom_0").value = "footer sign up form";

Remember to customise the ID and value to suit!

The value can be any text you choose like SG Widget 1, blog page, footer, New Product Launch, etc.

Now when a user subscribes from this widget, their record in Sendgrid will have a custom field that shows where they signed up from. Here is what you will see in Sendgrid:




There are many benefits of recording where your users subscribed from.

Segment List

It is unlikely that all users on your list want to receive the same emails.

You could have a website in multiple languages. It would be a terrible user experience if a user subscribed from the Spanish version of your site and received a Welcome email in English. They would be more likely to unsubscribe than try to read the content. Using a hidden custom field with a value of English Version or Spanish Version will tell you where users subscribed from and what the appropriate email to send them is.

Similarly, a clothing website may have sections for men and women. Male subscribers probably don't want to receive updates about new women's clothing ranges. Setting a custom field with the value of Mens or Women's allows you to send the right email to the right audience in the future. You can then leverage SG Widget's custom email templates to offer more targeted emails to each audience

Segmentation is an entire topic on its own and this is just a brief overview but SG Widget makes it easy to segment SG Widget subscribers from the rest on your list.

Consolidate lists

By recording where users subscribed from you can consolidate your lists. In the examples above, website owners would have needed to create multiple Sendgrid lists for each audience to know where users joined from. Storing the subscribe location with SG Widget Custom Fields bypasses this problem and allows you to avoid an unnecessary number of lists.

See Which Marketing Channels Are Performing Best

It is important to know which marketing channels are performing better than others so you can optimize them. Imagine you have a subscription widget on a wordpress site, are running an email collection campaign via Social Media and also running PPC ads that open a page with an SG Widget instance. It helps to have exact numbers on how many signups each channel is driving. SG Widget will allow you to see exactly how many users are coming from the PPC campaign so you can change your bidding accordingly.

See Which Widgets Are Performing Best

You may have multiple widgets that all connect to the same list. You could place a widget in the footer of your website, another embedded in the middle of a blog post with the third appearing in a popup on the homepage. Giving each instance a Custom Field value of SG Widget Footer, SG Widget Blog, SG Widget Homepage Splash will provide insight into exactly how many subscribers are signing up from each instance and allow you to analyze the conversion rates of each.

Taking things further

Those are just some of the basic use cases of recording where users subscribed from but there are more advanced options open to you.

A/B Test Sign Up Methods

There are many ways to show a signup form and different audiences respond in different ways. You could have one Widget that appears in a popup takeover and a second that slides in from the side in a less intrusive manner. Setting Custom Field values of SG Widget Popup and SG Widget Slide In will provide hard data on which method works best for your audience.

A/B Test Opt-in Types

There are a various Opt-in methods that can be applied to a sign up process. We strongly recommend Double Opt In and support it as a feature of SG Widget but some users may find this doesn’t work for their audience. You could have one widget that sends users through a Single Opt In process and a second that sends them through Double Opt In. A custom field will allow you to categorize these users in your lists and measure which method your audience responds best to.

A/B Test Content

If you have a separate widget instance on a couple of blog posts with Custom Field values of SG Widget Blog Post Video and SG Widget Blog Post Tutorial, you can see which content type generates more signups and performs better.

Finishing Up

When collecting email addresses for your Sendgrid lists, it's important to understand where those subscribers are coming from so you can know your customer, segment and analyse marketing channel effectiveness. You can take things further by A/B testing content types and signup methods. The best thing is that the data is hidden from users so their signup experience is not interrupted or inhibited in any way.

All of this is made possible by SG Widget’s Hidden Custom Fields, which is a feature we built on the back of a user request. If you have a feature you would like to see in SG Widget or anything that would make you Sendgrid experience better, let us know in the comments below.


Kyle 07.09.2020

Neat little tricks here. This gives me a lot more detail on my contacts

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