Websites that display a box that ask for your name and email address are attempting to build an opt-in list. When you provide your contact information, you are giving the list owner permission to send you a newsletter, emails, updates or whatever the offer. These lists are a used for what is commonly referred to as email marketing.
Email marketing is a popular way to build a list and then market to the masses. Technically you can only send emails to those who give you permission and to send unsolicited bulk email is considered spam. While there are laws against spam many inboxes are still hosts to junk email and the like.
With most people on the internet having at least one email account, a person online who doesn’t have an email account is like a person without a cell phone – a rather small percentage. In fact, a good percentage of people who do have email accounts check their email more than once a day.
This being true, what better way to stay in touch with your customers and prospective customers than through email marketing? Once someone fills in the form with their contact information, they are basically saying, “Yes I’m interested in what you have to offer and I give you permission to send me marketing materials via email.”
By utilizing opt-in lists, you are opening your business to a world of potential customers. Remember, these people have been to your site and are showing an interest in what you have to offer by filling in their name and email and requesting you send them more information.