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Create an Email Subscription List With the Opt-In Panda Plugin for WordPress


To run a successful business or blog on your WordPress website, you will need to have a growing email subscription list. This email list will allow you to market to your target audience and will become a trusted source of revenue and traffic if used correctly. 

But how do we collect emails from our target audience?

Thankfully, there are plenty of WordPress plugins that we can choose from to collect these emails. One of the best plugins to collect emails is the Opt-In Panda plugin. Opt-In Panda collects emails by locking specific content on your pages and posts until a user has signed up. This is a very effective way to collect emails from your target audience that you can market to in your email newsletters.

In this article, we’ll go over how you can collect emails on your website with the Opt-In Panda plugin. 

What We Will Be Building 

This tutorial will cover how to build an email locker and place it on a webpage to blur out your page's text. We are using this email locker to collect email addresses from viewers of our webpage so we can market to them in the future. This email locker will blur out the entire webpage's content, and an email sign-up popup will be displayed over the blurred-out content. This popup will require the user to enter their email address in order to view the content on the webpage. 

We are creating this email locker because it is a very effective way of marketing and building your audience. The people who view your webpage and enter their email into your email locker are interested in your website's content. From a marketing perspective, this is key. If the page's content is aligned with what you are selling, then you will have identified a targeted audience that has already shown interest in what you are selling, and this will give you a much higher conversion rate for sales. Below is an image of the email locker that we will be creating. 

The Opt-In Panda email locker in action

Creating a New Locker

To collect emails from your website visitors, Opt-In Panda locks a portion of the content on a webpage and asks the visitor to enter their email. This gives visitors a reason to subscribe right there and get instant access to your website's valuable content. 

To create this locker, we are going to head on over to WP Dashboard > Opt-In Panda > + New Locker. Next, click on + Create Item in the Email Locker section. This will take us to the email locker editor. We are going to first name the locker "Email Locker" at the top of the editor. 

Now we are going to change the Basic Options of the locker to have the locker function the way we want it to. Under Basic Options, we want to change the default locker header to be more descriptive for the website visitor. We will change it to say This Content Is Only For Email Subscribers.

Next, we are going to change the locker message. We want to make it clear to the website viewer that they need to have a valid email address in order to access the content so we will make a minor change to the text to say: Please subscribe to unlock this content. To subscribe, enter a valid email address below.

Setting up Opt-In Panda

Now we are going to change the theme of the locker. There are three themes to choose from. Choose the one that fits best with the color scheme and design of your website. In our case, the Dark Theme will fit the best. 

Right below the Theme and Overlap Mode settings, you will be able to see a preview of the actual locker, which will help you make your theme choices. Next, we will change the Overlap Mode. The overlap mode is how website visitors will see the locked content. 

We want the locked content to be blurred out so website visitors cannot see the actual content on the page, so we will select the Blurring option. You can see the changes reflected in the preview section of the editor. 

The next settings we are going to change are in the Subscription Options part of the editor. To ensure that the user is not putting in a fake email address just to view the content, we are going to choose the Full Double Opt-In setting.

Once the user enters their email address, they will receive a confirmation email. Once they confirm the subscription in the email, the content on the website will be unlocked. If the user puts in a fake email address, they will not be able to confirm the subscription and won't be allowed to see the content.

By default, the email confirmation email will be sent through WordPress. We will let WordPress send these emails, but you can have your email service provider send out these emails instead. 

Subscription options for Opt-In Panda

Next, we are going to go to the right-hand side of the locker editor and adjust the Terms & Policies settings. We are going to turn the consent checkbox on. In the preview, you will see that a consent checkbox has been added to the bottom of the locker. 

This is a very important feature to turn on. As of 2018, the European Union implemented a new data protection law that covers processing personal data. Turning this feature on will ensure that the locker is compatible with GDPR. If your website interacts with EU citizens, you need to have this active. 

That is it! Your locker has now been created and is ready to add to your website. Check out the video below to watch the email locker creation process that we just went over. 

Adding the Locker to Your Website

Like most WordPress plugins, Opt-In Panda makes use of shortcodes to add the locker to your website. First, we will need to find and copy the shortcode to our computer's clipboard. Head up to the top right of the locker editor and locate the Manual Locking section. In this section, you will see a shortcode. Copy this shortcode and then head on over to a page or post that you would like to put your newly created email lock on. 

Once you are on this page, you are going to paste the shortcode right before the page or post content in the WordPress text editor. We are going to cut the second half of the shortcode as this will signal to the plugin to lock the content between the shortcode. The second half of the shortcode starts with [/emaillocker...]. Once you have cut the second part of the shortcode, head on over to the last piece of website content that you want to be locked and paste this shortcode. 

Congratulations! Your content will now be email locked, and you are ready to start growing your email list. Watch the video below to see how to add the locker to your website. 

Getting the Most Out of Opt-In Panda

In this article, we covered just one possible use of the email locker. There are many other uses of the email locker than just blurring out the text on your webpages. Here are a few ways that you utilize the Opt-In Panda plugin to help you grow your email list and marketing campaigns. 

Lock Free Download Links

By locking just the download links on your webpage, you give the user a chance to read through the content of the page and then entice them to enter their email address to receive the free download. This works most effectively when you place the download and the email locker at the bottom of the webpage and use the content placed before the download to convince the reader that they must have the free download. 

Lock Images and Videos

Blocking specific images is another useful way to encourage users. In today's video and image-driven world, users would rather look at images and watch videos than do any reading. Putting an email locker on any important videos and images on your website will give your users a good reason to sign up!

Lock Specific Sections of Your Website

The email locker allows you to lock as many webpages as you would like. This is very handy if you have sections of your website that you don't want users to have instant access to. Areas of your website that you could lock include free download sections, blogs, galleries, or any area of your site that you don't want to give away for "free."


The Opt-In Panda WordPress plugin gives you the ability to create an email locker that prevents your website viewers from viewing a page's content unless they enter their email address. This locker is incredibly helpful for building an email list for your website. In this tutorial, you learned one way to create this email locker using the plugin. 

To give this plugin a try, head over to CodeCanyon and check out the live preview of the Opt-In Panda plugin. And while you're here, check out some of the other great WordPress plugins available from CodeCanyon.

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