This is a guest post by Kevin George, head of marketing at EmailMonks
Marketing is all about putting the collected customer data to work and providing customers with good user experience to build lasting relations with them. This is especially difficult in email marketing and more so for those in the e-commerce industry because of the diverse products and varied customer interests.
So, let’s learn which e-commerce emails you need to send, how to collect valuable customer information and how to use the data collected further in other emails to improve the user experience.
Importance of Emails in the E-commerce Industry
Out of all the different marketing channels, Email is King since 80% of marketers consider email marketing as the best driver for customer retention. Moreover, checking email is a complementary activity, which means that consumers will see your emails while they’re watching TV, in bed, or on vacation, thus increasing the exposure of your message.
When it comes to e-commerce industry, email is an essential part. As compared to other industries, e-commerce emails boast an open rate of 15.66% and click rates 2.07% which is one of the highest. Additionally, emails have the highest power to reach compared to social media and other marketing channels. This means your promotional discount may be seen by some of the social media followers (who are online at that moment), but rest of the followers may miss out in the flood of posts from other brands, whereas every subscriber will receive your promotional email. This is especially an important fact when it comes to holiday email marketing.
But to get your email opened, it is important for the email to provide value to your subscribers and for that it is important to know your subscribers well.
Campaign #1 Know Your Prospect through Welcome Emails
When someone subscribes to your brand’s email, all you currently have is their name and email address. By incentivizing your subscribers to complete their profiles, you gain valuable information as is shown in this email by Paul Smith below.
In this welcome email, the hero image adds a humorous symbolism as it conveys the message that the brand wants to know the subscriber better for which the subscriber needs to update their profile.
By collecting demographic information such as Name, Age, Sex, Location or even color preferences about your subscriber, you can segment your emails better and cater better & relevant messages to them in future emails.
Campaign #2: Sales and Promotional Emails
Next set of emails that are important for e-commerce are the sales and promotional emails. These emails carry promotions or discount codes that will act as the push for your subscribers who are unsure of buying from you, or a gentle reminder to those subscribers to not miss out on a reasonable offer. In the email below by American Eagle Outfitters, the hero image sets the theme of the email, followed by a discount code.
Campaign #3: Post Purchase Transactional emails
Once a customer makes a purchase, the next set of emails that are called post-purchase transactional emails. The main purpose of these email is to notify the subscriber about some purchase-related update, but email marketers have been sliding in some promotions like upsell, cross-sell or restocking. The only thing to take care is that your transactional email should only contain 20% promotional content and remaining 80% needs to be purely transactional. The most common post-purchase emails are:
- Order Confirmation emails: This is an email sent as soon as the customer makes a purchase. This email is an affirmation to the customer that their product has been successfully placed.
In the above email by Urban Outfitters, the first thing a subscriber sees on opening the email is the bold headline stating their order shipping. Going a step ahead they have also added images of the products as a gentle reminder.
- Shipping Receipt emails: Once the shipment is processed, an email is sent to acknowledge the order. This email will have a link for the customer to track their order.
In the above email by iFit Nourish team, they have provided an approximate delivery time along with a link to track the shipments.
- Re-stock emails: For companies dealing with consumables and replenishables, periodic reminders using re-stock emails are a good way to stay close to the customers.
In the above email by Chewy, not only did they show the products the customer is running low on, but they also cross-sold other products.
- Post Purchase Feedback / Survey: It is a good thing to constantly update your services by asking your customer how they found your product/services.
Campaign #4: Cart Abandonment Emails
When a customer puts items in their cart but doesn’t make a purchase, they’re teetering on the edge of a conversion. All you need to do is give them a little push, and they will become a loyal customer. It’s best to send cart abandonment emails in stages; if you’re using an email manager like MailChimp, you can set up an automation that sends these emails out at junctures of your choice. Cart abandonment emails shouldn’t be pushy, but they should remind your customers of what they liked about your products when they were browsing. If you word these emails correctly, customers will navigate back and finish their purchases immediately.
In the above email by Jack Threads, for ease of association, they have added images of the abandoned products.
Campaign #5: Cross and Upsell Emails
Nobody is going to be happy with a plain white shirt or black dress. Keep the sales cycle going on by cross-selling your customer other products that would go well with their current purchase. Not only are you solving their search, but you are also expanding your collections for their customer to choose from.
In the above email by Dollar Shave Club, they suggested products to their customer to be added in the next shipment.
Campaign #6: Customer retention emails
Nobody likes to see a customer go but owing to some reason, some of your customers are going to go dormant. You can either lament they’re going away or send them a customer retention email to retain them back. In the below email by ebuyer.com, the marketer has taken a humorous tone to remind the customer that they are being missed and wish the customer to come back again.
Emails are vital for e-commerce, but the days of impersonal email blasts are over. To capture your customer’s data and attention, you’ll need to send dynamic emails that are targeted to each client’s unique attributes. The more customer details you have, the more conversions you’ll achieve, and the more growth your company will enjoy, which makes grasping the importance of e-commerce emails important no matter where you stand in the corporate hierarchy.
Author Bio – Kevin George, the Head of Marketing at Email Uplers – one of the fastest growing Email design and coding companies specializes in crafting email templates, PSD to HTML email conversion and provides free responsive HTML email templates. He loves gadgets, bikes, jazz, and breathes ‘email marketing’. He enjoys sharing his insights and thoughts on email marketing best practices at his Email Uplers blog