In the following post you’re going to discover the inner workings of what I can only describe as one of the best mailing list plugins available for WordPress right now. You’ll learn everything you need to know to make a decision and also exactly why I bought it and use it on all of my websites.
If you have been here before, then you may have noticed that I’m a big fan of Hybrid Connect.
I use it on plenty of my sites but the big question is – is it all just hype? And is it going to help you?
Let’s take a closer look…
The Hybrid Connect plugin reviewed
Hybrid Connect is a WordPress plugin that is designed specifically to make it extremely easy for you to integrate mailing list services such as GetResponse (which is what I use) and create powerful, converting opt-in forms.
These converting opt-in forms will get people on to your mailing list which you can then use to keep bringing traffic back to your blog and promoting products to.
If you want to know exactly why you should build a list, read this post and you’ll learn exactly why it’s so important.
>> Do you want to skip the review and get straight to the plugin that’s benefiting 1,000′s of other bloggers like you? Click here.
Hybrid Connect has an impressive array of features and combine together to make this one of the most powerful list building plugins available.
Here are some examples of the main features:
- Responsive forms
- Entirely drag and drop, no coding required form builder
- Add forms using short code
- Unlimited forms and unlimited lists
- GoToWebinar integration
- In depth statistics
- Facebook connect integration
- Built in split testing functionality
- 30 impressive templates to get you started
- Save your own templates
- Embed video in your opt-in forms
I am struggling to come with anything bad to say about Hybrid Connect and one of the reasons is because I’ve come to rely on it so much and every time I think I’ve found something that causes me a problem I then find a way round it.
It got to the point where I was even trying to scrutinise the button styles, I wasn’t all that keen on them – and then I noticed you can upload your own buttons so there’s no excuse.
Shane Melaugh and his team did an amazing job on this plugin.
If I could think of anything, it would be that I’d like more templates and maybe some additional styles for squeeze page but the fact remains that Hybrid Connect does come with 30+ well designed templates already.
Where can you add opt-in forms with Hybrid Connect?
Hybrid Connect allows you to add opt-in forms in the following locations on your blog:
- Sidebar opt-ins
- Pop-up light boxes
- Below your post
- Opt-in tick box for your comments
- Facebook pages
- Squeeze pages
Which auto responder services are supported?
A lot of plugins that are available either don’t support many mailing list/auto responder services or they list a few of the big names and leave it at that meaning that sometimes you’re just not sure what will work.
- Get Response
- Mail Chimp
- Constant Contact
- Office Auto Pilot
- Imnica Mail
- And more..
If your mailing list provider supports HTML web forms then it will work with Hybrid Connect.
Just how good is the form builder interface?
One of the reasons why I bought Hybrid Connect was because I had been searching for a new Opt-in plugin for a good while, I tried a lot of the main plugins and I was always disappointed.
You could customise a lot them but only to a certain point, then after that you would definitely need to know HTML and CSS to get the sort of look that you want.
I wanted a mailing list plugin that was 100% customisable, no need for messing around with code – just an easy and straight forward way to building powerful converting opt-in forms.
Let’s take a look at the types of things you’ll be able to do with the Hybrid Connect interface.
You start off with the option to pick a template:
Now we’re on to the actual customisation options which allow you to change every aspect of the template:
Each one of the sections above expands to reveal settings that give you complete control over your opt-in form’s look.
Next you can add images, change margins, positioning and more:
What about support?
There are two main reasons why I tend to go with premium plugins – firstly they offer a bigger and better selection of features and secondly, they offer great support in most cases.
I have had to use Hybrid Connect’s support once, and the problem was that something was interfering with a floating menu on a theme that I was using on another website – the theme developer told me that it was because of Hybrid Connect.
After I raised the ticket with Hybrid Connect it was clear that the theme developer was just passing responsibility and it turned out that they had some mistakes in their java script coding.
Paul from Hybrid Connect really did me a solid on this one, it wasn’t his responsibility to fix because ultimately it was the theme developers, but I was desperate to get it fixed because the theme developers were useless.
The last support ticket I raised with the theme developers took 2 months of back and forth to get fixed which involved a lot of passing blame to everyone else they could think of because they were too lazy to fix it.
Paul from Hybrid Connect had it fixed in about 5 minutes and I was on my way.
I wish more developers gave the same support as Hybrid Connect.
What about other plugins like OptinMonster?
Update 8th January 2014:
There is another plugin that I have been actively recommending for adding opt-in forms to your site.
That plugin is OptinMonster which I reviewed here.
There are situations where OptinMonster would be more suited and other situations when Hybrid Connect would be better.
Hybrid Connect is a very feature rich plugin, you might even go so far as to say ‘all singing, all dancing’ which means that it will fit inline with most situations.
The downfall of having such a feature rich plugin is that it’s not as light weight, so it will place additional load on your server. Probably not that much, but some.
You need to ask yourself if you really need all of these features or may need them in the future.
If you’re looking for a more lightweight option, maybe something specifically for popovers then something like OptinMonster may be more suitable.
The trade off of course is that you lose particular features like Hybrid Connect’s ability to customise almost every aspect of your opt-in forms.
I run a lot of sites and I use Hybrid Connect on most of them but I do use OptinMonster for some others.
The verdict on Hybrid Connect
Hybrid Connect is an impressive plugin with all of the features that you will need to sky rocket your mailing list.
You have 30 well designed templates to get you started, but you have the option to change anything on whichever template you want to use, you can customise every aspect with an intuitive form builder interface.
You can hook in pretty much any auto responder that you like, split test, embed videos and that’s just the tip of the ice berg.
Hybrid Connect is a must have mailing list plugin.
Due to this plugin being so amazing at what it does, Hybrid Connect has earned its place in my blogging toolbox – nothing else comes close.
… I’m not the only one who thinks that because 1,000′s of other bloggers like you are already benefiting from Hybrid Connect.