It’s coming soon…
You really don’t want to miss it.
It’s almost time. It’s going to be well worth waiting for!
When? Please tell me!
Well, actually it’s already here: The new and improved Countdown Timer element that you can add to any page of your WordPress website.
In today’s post, you’ll discover:
- How to get people excited about your upcoming product launch or event.
- How to build a waiting list of people interested in your launch.
- Why FOMO will increase your conversion rate.
Time for Some Inspiration: What Can You Achieve with Countdown Timers?
Countdown Timers are a great way to maintain focus on upcoming product launches and restocking of popular items.
They transform a boring “coming soon” page into a “save the date” announcement. Oh the anticipation!
These timers work well for:
- Selling online courses
- Promoting premium memberships
- Launching physical products
- Restocking top-selling products
Don’t forget that the Countdown Timer itself isn’t the sole purpose of the page – if you’re counting down to an event or launch, you’ll want to include a call-to-action for most use cases.
Examples of Countdown Timer calls-to-action include:
- A button to learn more about the offer
- Subscribing to an email list, to receive updates when something goes live
- Bookmarking the page
- Sharing the page on social media
It’s also important to consider if you really need to display days, hours, minutes and seconds on your Countdown Timers.
Consider the timeframe and urgency as it relates to your product and audience… if the launch is exciting enough, it might warrant counting down to the seconds. If the launch is a physical restock, it might work better with just days and hours.
I've disabled the minutes and seconds tiles in the example below, because a new backpack launch doesn’t warrant nail-biting scarcity. But this decision is entirely yours to customize!
Countdowns aren’t just for products.
You can use them to draw attention to your upcoming forums, Facebook group, course library, Discord server, Slack group, weekly livestream… the list is endless.
Critically, this is also a great opportunity to collect email addresses, as your audience registers their interest using an opt-in form on the same page.
You can even use a Countdown Timer to spruce up a “Coming Soon” page for your upcoming website. This could be an effective way of informing people when it goes live, to boost initial traffic, social media sharing, and blog comments.
In the example below, I combined a Thrive Countdown Timer with a Lead Generation form.
Add Urgency to Limited Availability Launches
Does your product launch have a defined cart open and closed period?
If so, you’ll probably see that half your sales take place on the final day.
That’s because Fear Of Missing Out – or FOMO – turns up the emotional aspect of a purchase decision to 11. And nobody wants to miss out on a great opportunity.
Your visitors will be split into 3 camps:
- Those who read your sales copy, and made a largely logical decision to purchase.
- Those who read your sales copy, and chose to not buy. For these people, the offer doesn’t meet a pressing need.
- Those who read your sales copy, and didn’t buy for a myriad of other reasons: distractions, cost, last minute objections, frugality, decision deferral.
Countdown Timers use FOMO to force that last group to make a decision… yes or no, in or out, success or failure.
I’ve spoken about how powerful online competitions are before. They’re a great way to energize your audience and encourage them to interact with your brand.
But it can be a hassle to centralize the submissions process.
Combine a WordPress Countdown Timer element with the ability to upload a file, and you’ve got yourself an instant competition submissions portal.
The example below took me just 15 minutes to build:
- Add a File Upload form, and match the colors to your landing page design.
- Add a Countdown Timer, and choose from one of the many professional design templates.
- Set the positioning and Z-index of the Countdown Timer, to create an interesting overlap effect. This advanced step is entirely optional, but I love the visual effect.
- Disable the Seconds tile.
- Add a heading and some text copy.
This approach will save you tons of time if your website features recurring competitions.
Countdown to Big Events
Impressive calendar events deserve an impressive countdown.
If you want people to get excited and save the date in their diary, you’ll need to build some anticipation for your upcoming event.
The new Thrive Countdown Timer element is perfect for:
- Music gigs
- Celebrity events
- Political rallies
- The annual office Christmas party where Susan from Finance always embarrasses herself, but hey, it’s fine, that’s just our Susan.
If you want people to attend your event and share the news with others, you can feature a stylish Countdown Timer on your landing pages or a sitewide sticky ribbon to keep it front of mind.
Using Countdown Timers like this is ideal for pre-selling tickets, or announcing when tickets will be available to buy.
Below I’ve combined the Countdown Timer with a background image, to create a stylized event block.
Special Offers & Sales Funnel Discounts
Our last example of how you can use the Thrive Themes Countdown Timer is to promote a time-limited bonus offer, either as part of your main sales funnel, or as a last ditch attempt to convert undecided leads.
Here’s some examples of time-limited offers:
- Bonus videos
- Access to a private community
- A 1-on-1 coaching session
- Related online courses
I like to think of these as Flash Offers as they should be short and compelling… definitely no longer than a few days.
It’s tempting to give visitors more time to consider the offer, but that takes away from the urgency and emotion. A 30-minute time-limited bonus will be much more effective than the same offer promoted over 1 week.
Again, we’re tapping into Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) for people currently sitting on the fence. It won’t influence those who have logically talked themselves out of needing your product, but it can definitely make that fence a less comfortable place to sit.
To drive home that urgency, I’ve disabled the Days and Hours tiles in the example below. I’ve also made sure to use a Countdown Timer template with very visual ‘flipping’ animation, making the visitor acutely aware that time is ticking!
Where Can you Find the New Countdown Timer?
You’ll find the new improvements to the Countdown Timer in the following Thrive tools:
- Thrive Architect, under the names Countdown Timer and Evergreen Countdown Timer
- Thrive Theme Builder’s visual editor
- Thrive Ultimatum
All versions are now endlessly customizable in terms of design, but there are a few functional differences between the versions.
Thrive Architect’s Countdown Timer
Thrive Architect includes the same fully-functional Countdown Timer we explored in this article.
It comes in 2 flavors:
- Countdown Timer - for one-time, date-specific countdowns.
- Evergreen Countdown Timer - for recurring countdowns over a defined time period.
Both versions offer exactly the same customization and design options.
Thrive Theme Builder’s Countdown Timer
Thrive Theme Builder comes with a powerful visual editor for creating WordPress landing pages. It’s built on the same technology as our awesome page builder, Thrive Architect
The Countdown Timer found in Thrive Theme Builder offers exactly the same functionality as Thrive Architect, and – as of this article – both have access to the same number of professional designed templates.
Thrive Ultimatum’s Countdown Timer
Thrive Ultimatum is our fully featured scarcity marketing plugin for WordPress.
Functionally, it differs from the Countdown Timers showcased in today’s article in 3 advanced ways. Thrive Ultimatum allows you to:
- Display multiple Countdown Timer elements across your entire website with ribbons, widgets, and in-content timers. Or choose exactly which pages you want them to appear on.
- Offer each visitor their own independent, unhackable Countdown Timer.
- Redirect the page when the timer expires.
Seriously though, this is only scratching the surface of what’s possible with Thrive Ultimatum.
If you only need a single Countdown Timer with manual control, then you’ll be just fine with Thrive Architect... but if you want to run professional, automated scarcity campaigns, you’ll definitely want to check out Thrive Ultimatum.
Time to Shine! - New Countdown Timer Template Designs
Our designers are hard at work adding new templates to the Countdown Timer element all the time.
If you use Thrive Architect or Thrive Theme Builder, then you’ll see the following starter template designs:
Because they’re fully customizable, you can think of them as a starting point for creating your own unique designs.
If however, you use Thrive Ultimatum (which is included in the full Thrive Membership), you’ll also get access to these additional professionally-designed templates:
There’s something here for every brand and style. Just choose the Countdown Timer template that best fits your website, and have fun customizing it to make it perfect.
Speaking of customization, hold on to your hat...
Time Management! - Improved Countdown Timer Customization
This isn’t a how-to post or a tutorial on how to use countdown timers (you’ll find that here) so I won’t go through each option in excruciating technical detail… but I can’t resist showing off some of the impressive features we’ve now added to our WordPress Countdown Timer element.
Top-Level Customization and Configuration
Here you can set the overall behavior, size and main color of your Countdown Timers.
Let’s walk through these customization features, starting with the End Date and Time.
Setting the End Date
Obviously, Countdown Timers need to count down to something, so here you can specify the exact date, hour and minute of your big event or launch.
Simply set the End Date, and add any additional hours or minutes if you don’t want it to expire immediately after midnight. You’ll also see a handy reminder of the timezone your WordPress site is set to.
But we’re just warming up. Let’s explore some of the advanced features and customization options available...
Choosing Which Units to Display
Next, you can choose which units of time to display: days, hours, minutes or seconds.
You’ll notice that the examples earlier in this article showcase a range of different units – some with just days and hours (events), and others with just minutes and seconds (bonus offers and flash sales).
How can you achieve this? It’s as easy as toggling the buttons below!
And here’s the results...
A Countdown Timer with all the units
A Countdown Timer without Seconds
A Countdown Timer without Days
Choose to Include a Time Unit Separator
Notice the forward slash (/) in the examples above?
We call that a tile separator, and it’s entirely optional. You’ll find a handy toggle switch to show or hide it in your Countdown Timer.
But do you have to use a slash? Of course not… this is the Thrive visual editor we’re talking about here!
Don’t worry, you’ll get to choose exactly what type of separator to use as we unlock and explore even more customization options...
Element-Level Customization Options
Once you’ve made the big style and behavior changes to your countdown timer, you can click the ‘Edit Design’ button to unlock more granular customization control.
This will allow you to make changes to the following elements:
All the usual style customizations are available – typography, margin, colors, borders – but some elements have their own extra special options!
Flip-card digits (like the example above) allow you to easily customize the divider line color, style and size. Here’s a quick example of a white dotted divider line:
The separator can also be changed to any character you like.
Any character, you say? Yes, even Unicode emojis!
These options combined give you an incredible amount of control over exactly how your countdown timer looks and feels.
Want a professional, clean look?
How about more stylish and cutesy?
Big, bold and unmissable?
Overtime! - Countdown Timer Expiry Actions
Are you still holding onto your hat? If not, go and get a hat to hold onto...
So what happens when your new Countdown Timer hits zero?
It’s up to you!
- Show the expired Countdown Timer with all zeros – 00:00:00:00
- Hide the expired Countdown Timer
- Replace it with a message
- Switch it out for something else entirely
It’s simple and intuitive to edit the Expired state of your countdown timer. As before, select your Countdown Timer and hit the familiar ‘Edit Design’ button.
But this time, take note of the dark floating bar that appears inside the visual editor. This allows you to switch between the Active and Expired “states” of your Countdown Timer design using a drop-down menu.
In the following example, the Active state shows the countdown timer when it’s still ticking:
The Expired state hides the countdown timer and displays a “Shucks, you missed it!” message with a lead generation form when it’s hit zero:
What’s great about this approach is that both states can be customized independently.
You can add any element from within the Thrive visual editor… a video, social follower badges, or even an alternative call-to-action like the opt-in form above.
Think about what would work best for your business and audience then make it happen!
Time to Upgrade?
In this article, we've explored 3 tools that offer powerful Countdown Timers for your WordPres website... Thrive Architect, Thrive Theme Builder, and Thrive Ultimatum.
Did you know you can get access to ALL of our tools at a single, super low price? Check out the Thrive Membership to save money and build your online business today.
Who would have thought that a simple Countdown Timer could be so exciting?
But as with all elements, it’s the application – and not the tool itself – that really makes a difference in your marketing and sales funnels.
I don’t want you to get distracted with shiny gimmicks… instead I want to challenge you to think of how you could use a Countdown Timer on your website and then start that clock!
What kind of time scarcity campaign would help push your audience and online visitors to take action?
Let me know in the comments below!