How to Promote Your Contest on Your Website

Learn everything you need to know about promoting a contest or giveaway on your own website with our helpful guide.

Contests and giveaways are truly outstanding marketing tools, but in order for them to be effective you need to actively promote them and make sure you're putting them in front of your following and beyond.

As well as utilising social media platforms to promote your contest, it's also important to exert some promotional efforts on your own website or online store. This will help you reach highly relevant users and drive immediate action.

Promoting your contest from your website will allow you to notify organic traffic and first-time visitors of your campaign. These are users who would have no idea about your contest if you had only promoted your campaign to your existing social following.

To make sure you have a well-equipped promotional arsenal and are ready to drive on-site action we're going to take you through our favourite tactics for promoting a contest from within your website:

To drive traffic to your contest, you'll need to ensure announcements and notifications are readily available on your homepage and related pages so that everyone who visits your website is aware of your contest and easily able to enter.

Using Gleam Capture, you can customise popups or notifications based on custom behavioural rules so that every visitor can be notified of your contest and prompted to easily enter it.

The magic of using Gleam Capture is that you only have to install the code once on your website template. Once you have the code in the <head> section of your website, you'll be able to create and implement multiple Captures on your website at the same time.

Let's have a look at some of the types of popups and notifications you can use to promote your contest:

Using a subtle notification bar, you can announce your contest to new or returning visitors in a non-invasive fashion. For new visitors, they can click on the link to be directed to your contest. And for returning visitors, it's a subtle reminder that they can still enter your contest if they want to.

Gleam Capture's Notification Bar installed on E-commerce website

To create a notification bar like the one above, just apply the following settings to your new Capture:

Template: Notification

Layout: Bar

Variation: Ethereal

If you really want to make sure visitors see your contest, then there's no better way than to promote it than with a popup banner on your website.

Gleam Capture's Current URL rule allows you to display a popup on a specified URL. So if you are running a contest for a specific product, you can display the popup on that product's page to let prospective buyers know they can win it.

We recently did a partnered contest with Beardbrand. Here's a demo of how a popup notification could look like on their website:

Gleam Capture's Popup Notification on an E-commerce website

Once the visitor clicks on your banner, you can direct them to your contest page, either in the same tab or in a new one.

To create a popup banner like the one above, just apply the following settings to your new Capture:

Template: Popup

Layout: Image

Variation: Modern

The beauty of promoting a contest on your own website is that you can customise it however you want. It's likely your website already comes with a carousel or slider, and you might be using it to show off your latest deals and offers. Why not use the same spot to promote your contest too?

Promoting your contest on a slider or carousel

If you want visitors to find out about your contest, then you'll have to make sure they are able to navigate to your contest, wherever it may be hosted.

Link to Giveaway from website's navigation bar

This is especially important if you host frequent giveaways. Visitors will come back from time to time to check out on your new contests, you want to make it as easy as possible for them to do so. For example, our customer Fitbark runs weekly giveaways so they have a 'Giveaways' link on their menu:

Link to Giveaway from website's navigation menu

The same goes for our other customer,, who also links off to their 'Giveaway' page from their website's hamburger menu:

Link to Giveaway from website's hamburger menu

If you're using Gleam on your Shopify store, we'll automatically create a dedicated page on your website to host your Competition.

If you have an active blog on your website, then there's no reason not to blog about your upcoming giveaway. It doesn't have to be fully customised or look super polished, all you have to do is create a simple banner to visually describe your contest, as well as outline some important details:

Blog post about a giveaway campaign

Our customer uses their blog to announce the winners of the previous week's giveaway, as well as announce new giveaways that their readers can enter:

Blog post about a giveaway campaign and announcement of previous winners

If you run frequent giveaways like we do, then chances are you'll want to house all your past and present giveaways in a single page.

Gleam's Partner Competitions page

If you are running multiple contests at the same time, it's also easier for visitors to locate them and to enter more than one contest.

Giveaways page from iDrop News

If you run your own online store, chances are you'll want to host your contest on your own website. The same notion goes for bloggers or influencers who have their own website. There are many ways to install a Gleam contest, we'll go through a few examples:

Gleam Competitions can be installed on your website as a popup which is then triggered by a floating tab on your website. You can use this approach along with other promotional efforts to drive more organic traffic to your contest.

The advantage of using a popup is that it lowers the barriers to entry as users can easily complete actions and enter the contest within the popup without having to go to a different page. Here's how a popup contest can look:

Another popular option is to embed the contest in a page on your website. Bonus points if you've got a dedicated page for it. Having the contest embedded on your website allows you to customise the page however you want, and also add additional details about the contest.

Gleam campaign embedded on an E-commerce store's landing page

Here at Gleam, we also feature all our contests in individual pages. This allows us more room to describe the prize as well as highlight some important details of the contest.

Gleam giveaway campaign on an individual page with comprehensive details

Gleam offers a unique hosted landing page for each campaign that you run with us. They're highly customisable, beautiful, mobile-friendly and specifically designed to drive entries from entrants.

Here's a beautiful example of a campaign from our customer

Custom hosted landing page for a Gleam giveaway campaign

If you want to use our landing pages but want to include your own domain name in the contest URL, then you can mirror our landing pages to a specified URL. All you have to do is paste in the embed code into a blank HTML page on your specified URL.

This means you can send visitors to a short and meaningful URL to enter your contest:

Customised Landing Pages are available to users on Pro plan and above.

Installation Methods
Learn More About Installation Methods

Find out everything you need to know about installing your campaign on websites, hosted landing pages and popup tabs.

We've introduced several installation methods to you, and you're probably wondering if there's any difference between building your own landing page or just mirroring ours. Put it this way, you could simply use our hosted landing pages to save effort in building your own dedicated page, as long as you make full use of the prize description area provided in the Competition widget.

Make sure all the important contest information is conveyed to your audience, and that they have full access to the terms and conditions, as well as other related contest details.

If you would like to build your own dedicated page and embed our widget instead, then you get full power over what the contest page would look like, as well as opportunities to embed other elements onto the same page. We'll talk more about customising your dedicated page in the next section...

When it comes to running successful online contests, having a dedicated landing page will facilitate a better understanding of your contest to your audience as well as create a space for participants to interact with your brand.

This contest page should include as much detail as possible about your contest, what prizes are being offered, as well as why you're hosting the contest. If you have a blog on your website, a dedicated blog post could also convey the same purpose.

Here are some pointers for what makes a good contest page:

If you're running a highly interactive contest, such as a photo contest, then you'll have to make sure all details regarding your contest are explicitly mentioned in the dedicated page.

We love this one from our customer ColorIt who uses Competitions to run their photo contests. Notice how they've also integrated their contest with Galleries to showcase previous contest entries:

Gleam Galleries for showcasing previous contest entries

In the blog post above, ColorIt described their photo contest comprehensively, including instructions on how to enter, criteria for the winning entries, as well as contest rules.

Run Your Own Photo Contest
Learn More About Photo Contests

Find out everything you need to know about setting up your own engaging photo contest and displaying submissions in a stylish gallery.

One of the most important elements of a successful contest or giveaway is in the design of the contest page. If you truly want to entice visitors to enter your contest, then you'll have to make sure the prize as well as instructions are highlighted in a visually stimulating manner.

Lucky for you, it's no longer difficult to produce high quality promotional assets in today's age. With tools like Canva, you can create simple but stunning banners like this one from Tahoe Trail Bar:

Use featured images with bright colours to promote your giveaway campaign

The holy grail to contest entries is of course...the prize! You will want to spend a lot of time detailing what makes your prize so desirable, as well as how many of those sweet prizes you are offering up to entrants.

Our customer Backroad Mapbooks went above and beyond in creating a landing page like this one to really entice entrants:

Backroad Mapbooks' contest landing page

After describing the winning tiers and prizes, Backroad Mapbooks instantly moves on to the ultimate call-to-action, which is to get visitors to enter their contest:

Backroad Mapbooks' Gleam campaign widget

Another great example is from Carryology, who runs giveaways for their partnered product reviews. Look at the effort they spend in describing each product, making readers very much enticed to enter their giveaways at the end of each post:

150+ Awesome Prize Ideas
Check Out 150+ Awesome Prize Ideas

Learn more about what makes a great prize and check out over 150 of our favourite prize ideas for every type of giveaway and occassion.

A great way to showcase your prize and present your contest in more detail is by using the slider in the Feature Image area to promote your offering. You can upload up to 4 photos for each Competition. Have a play with the prize area in our demo below:

This is especially a great tactic to use if you're offering a prize bundle and want to showcase everything included, or if you're running a campaign that you want to thoroughly explain.

Here's an example of how our customer OK Media uses the slider to show off their partners as well as the prize bundle they are offering:


Feature Image Sliders are available to users on Business plan and above.

Videos are a great way for showcasing your prize because it can provide a more holistic view of what the entrant stands to win. Seeing the prize in motion also makes it all the more desirable and relatable to the entrant, thus encouraging more entries.

Our customer Mishmi Takin uses powerful storytelling to highlight their snowboarding experience and introduce their line of products. They use the same video in each Competition they host:

Gleam giveaway campaign with an embedded promotional video

This is a great way to introduce your brand during a giveaway and help first-time visitors understand what your business is about and what you offer.

Gleam Competitions allows you to embed a video directly into your prize area, and this could be a video from YouTube, Vimeo, or Wistia. Have a play with our demo below:

Since you have total control over how your website looks, you have the ability to incorporate elements from social media platforms in your on-site contest promotion. Using social media embeds also adds legitimacy and helps you connect with fans and followers from those platforms.

To give your contest an even more visually stimulating experience, you can create a video to introduce your contest and prize to entrants. Recording a video adds a layer of professionalism to your contest and can help amp up excitement more than plain text ever could.

In the example below, photographer Evan Naka partnered with photography Sony to host a giveaway for his followers. He talks in depth about the nature of the contest as well as what they're about to give away:

If you're a little camera shy or don't have the time to create a video for your prize, you can always choose to embed videos of other people using the same product, especially if they're popular influencers.

By showing that influencers are using the products you're about to giveaway, you can make the prize all the more desirable to entrants. That's why in our own Boosted Board Giveaway, we let YouTube influencers Marques Brownlee and Casey Neistat do the talking:

When it comes to giveaways, you want to convince potential entrants that what they're about to enter is legitimate and that they definitely stand a chance to win something. You can easily achieve this by showing off previous winners that have participated in your giveaways.

Here at Gleam, we ask for our giveaway winners to Tweet about us once they receive their prizes. Then, we embed their Tweets on our contest pages:

Similarly, our customer has a 'hall of fame' page that shows off the names of winners from their giveaways:'s hall of fame page for showcasing giveaway winners

If you are promoting your contest on your own website then you'll need some help to maximise the traffic you're driving to your site. One way to drive highly targeted traffic to your contest page is by awarding entries to users who help share your campaigns with their friends and family. We call these actions Viral Shares.

Incentivising users to spread your contest around is the perfect way to promote your contest, as it encourages highly reliable social sharing which will lead to high participation rates and allow you to connect with an audience you wouldn't have otherwise been able to reach.

When your contest is nearing its end, it's time to make final announcements to urge first-time and return visitors alike to come enter your contest.

Using Gleam Capture, you can once again schedule popup banners to remind visitors that your contest is ending soon.

All you have to do is schedule for the popup to show within a specific date range using our Date rule:

Use 'Date' behavioural rule to pre-schedule Gleam Capture popups

You could try a popup banner...

Last chance to enter' Popup banner for E-commerce store giveaway

Template: Popup

Layout: Image

Variation: Personal

...Or perhaps a less intrusive bar anchored to the bottom of your page:

Last chance to enter' Capture bar for E-commerce store giveaway

Template: Bar

Layout: Pinned

Variation: Large

If you'd like to award bonus entries to visitors coming from a specific source, you can offer them a secret code using the Referring Domain rule. This could be tied to promotions coming from a specific social media platform, or from a specific influencer or blogger.

Use 'Referring Domain' behavioural rule to show Capture popups to specific visitors

You could offer up the code in a popup banner:

Offer a Coupon code to specific website visitors

Template: Popup

Layout: Image + Text

Variation: Modern

Similarly, you could also award extra entries to direct visitors using our Direct Traffic rule:

Use 'Direct Traffic' behavioural rule to show Capture popups to direct visitors

You will then redirect visitors to your contest page and award them with extra entries in your Competition using the Secret Code action:

If you often run more than one contests at the same time, then the Promote action will benefit you when it comes to hosting contests on your own website.

Using one contest, you can cross-promote your other contests and award entries to entrants when they enter both (or more) of your Competitions.

In the same vein, if this is not your first campaign, you could use the Loyalty Bonus action to award bonus entries to entrants who have entered your previous campaigns.

Partnering up with other brands is one of the most beneficial methods for growing your audience, especially if your business is still in its early stages. Ideally, you should partner up with other businesses serving the same niche, but offering a complementary product instead of a competing one.

With a joint partnership, you can co-host a giveaway and create a prize bundle, resulting in a larger prize pool as well as a larger audience. This can be done by hosting one individual campaign, or by connecting multiple campaigns from multiple partners.

In fact, cross-promoting is not limited to your own contests only. You can use the Promote action to cross-promote your partner's campaigns which allows you to create a chained giveaway.

Running A Partner Campaign
Learn How to Run a Partner Campaign

Find out everything you need to know about using Gleam to partner up with other brands and run powerful giveaways.

There's no question in today's age that your website should be mobile-friendly, and the same goes for your contest.

You don't want to drive a ton of mobile users to your campaign online to have them walk away as soon as they realize that your contest doesn't function properly on their device.

If you run your contest with Gleam's Competitions app your contest will be automatically optimised for mobile devices so you don't have to worry about anything holding you back when you promote your contest on your website.

Mobile view of a Gleam giveaway campaign

Stuart McKeown

Stuart McKeown is one of the Co-founders at Gleam. Aside from writing and helping businesses grow, he also enjoys sound design and drinking tea ☕️