If you’re running an online store without an ecommerce email campaign strategy, you may be leaving money on the table.
Contrary to what you might think, the best email campaigns for ecommerce businesses don’t have to be complicated or take a lot of time to implement. Using automated email workflows satisfies customers’ needs while increasing sales and building customer loyalty.
Today we’ll look at three types of ecommerce email campaigns to maximize revenue and customer communication efforts:
- Transactional emails
- Promotional emails
- Triggered emails
1. Transactional Emails
Transactional emails send helpful information to customers after checkout and other key actions.
“Transactional emails tout impressively high open rates, with order confirmation emails pulling in open rates of up to 70%,” says Rochelle Willoughby, Human’s Director of Acquisition and Monetization. “This makes transactional emails the perfect vessel to slip in marketing messages as they will most likely get seen. Adding in referral incentives, upsell and cross-sell opportunities can help increase revenue while reducing the number of emails you send to customers after they've purchased.”
Customers expect to receive transactional emails, so open rates are typically higher than with non-transactional emails. Therefore, take every opportunity to optimize your transactional emails to boost conversions and even generate new sales.
You might consider the following transactional emails as a “before, during and after” process. These emails include:
- Order confirmations
- Shipment status
- Customer check-ins
Order confirmations and purchase receipts are sent immediately after a sale and are often the first communication that new customers receive from you. In addition to actually confirming their order with an order number (make sure you do this first!), include the following:
- Products and quantities ordered
- Prices for each item and totals with taxes and shipping fees
- Expected shipping date
- Shipping address
- Contact information
- Thank you
While you may have provided an estimated ship date in your order confirmation, letting customers know their order is on its way creates excitement and validates your legitimacy as an online merchant.
Pro Tip: Use shipment status emails as cross-selling opportunities to recommend complementary products to go with their current purchase.
After a customer has received their order, don’t miss the opportunity to touch base with them and ensure they’re satisfied with your products or services. A customer check-in can also be a great time to ask for feedback or leave a review.
2. Promotional Emails
“Whether you have a big sale coming up or a new piece of education you want to promote, promotional emails are a great way to stay engaged with your contacts and send them timely messages,” says Rochelle.
By sending segmented ecommerce email marketing campaigns, you can target specific customer groups to receive offerings uniquely suited to their needs and buying patterns.
Holiday promos and Black Friday sales are examples of seasonal deals you can build promotions around.
93.2 million buyers made an online purchase on Black Friday in 2019. But don’t be tardy to the party: you should plan, create and schedule your holiday email campaigns at least a month ahead of time. According to BigCommerce, your holiday preparations should also include ensuring your online store has:
- A mobile-friendly, intuitive interface
- A seamless checkout process with several payment options
- Optimal site speed
Email newsletters keep customers informed of company developments, special offerings and product education. These long-form communications enable you to build your brand at a deeper level, creating a company persona that is relatable and relevant to your target market.
Price Drop Notifications
If you’ve lowered the price on an item a customer is considering purchasing, why not send a price drop notification? Price drop notifications can be used in conjunction with shopping cart abandonment or browse abandonment emails to incentivize customers to take the next step.
Pro tip: BOGO (Buy One, Get One 50% off) are also popular short-term product promotions you can run anytime.
New Product Notifications
Unlike seasonal promotions, new product notifications can be sent at any time, creating excitement and buying opportunities for your customers. New products are often the result of customer feedback, so make sure you let them know that your new widget or service is in response to their needs!
Love Your VIPs!
Who are your VIP customers?
Always send additional discount emails to your very best customers. Since they already love your product, chances are you can persuade them to purchase more, especially when an attractive discount accompanies it.
Pro tip: VIP customers are more than just loyal. To determine your VIPs, keep the following metrics in mind:
- Average order value (AOV)
- Total spend
- Total number of purchases
- Purchase frequency
3. Triggered Emails
Triggered emails, or workflow emails, make money while you sleep as they automatically go out based on actions contacts take. Setting up workflows that cover the complete buyer’s journey can help nurture contacts into repeat purchasers.
- Welcome/new subscriber emails
- Upsells and cross-sells
- Cart abandonment and browse abandonment
- Back in stock notifications
- Consumable product replenishment
- Win back unsubscribers
- Surveys and review requests
- Remember important dates
- Referrals, anyone?
- Thank you emails
Welcome/New Subscriber Emails
You never get a second chance to make a first impression. If you can connect with a customer even before they make a purchase, do it!
Sending welcome and new subscriber emails set the tone for the relationship and let customers know they’re seen and valued, whether they buy from you or not.
Here’s how to get the best results from your welcome and new subscriber welcome emails:
- Use a double opt-in to ensure you have the correct email address.
- Send your first email immediately, then follow up with a request for more information. The second email is your opportunity to get to know about their interests so that you can customize your future offers and communications with them.
Upsells & Cross-Sells
It’s easier to sell to an existing customer than a new customer. Upselling and cross-selling are two strategies that appeal to a captive audience.
Upselling encourages customers to purchase a similar but higher-end product than the one they’re considering.
Cross-selling encourages customers to purchase complementary or related products in addition to the one they’re buying.
Pro tip: You can combine upsells and cross-sells with transactional and promotional emails for maximum impact.
Cart Abandonment & Browse Abandonment Emails
You’re probably familiar with abandoned cart emails — messages sent after customers leave products in their shopping cart.
But what about customers who look without clicking “add to cart”? Browse abandonment emails help turn these browsers into customers.
Browse abandonment emails are triggered when a customer visits a product or category page a certain number of times without buying. Test different thresholds and behavioral triggers to identify your best conversion rates, like:
- Viewing the same item more than once
- Viewing multiple items in the same category
- Clicking on a product featured in a promotional email
- Searching your ecommerce site for a particular product
Back in Stock and Wishlist Notifications
Keep customers in the loop about products they’re interested in.
If you have a product out of stock, don’t lose a customer over it! Letting shoppers sign up to be notified when their desired item is available again is a great way to recapture the sale.
Additionally, if your site features a wishlist, you can set up an email trigger to send customers updates about promotions and updates about the items they want most.
Consumable Product Replenishment Emails
If your ecommerce site sells consumable products with predictable replenishment rates, try sending friendly reminders about just-in-time ordering. Alternatively, you can try an auto-ship program to keep customers stocked with their favorite things.
Win Back Unsubscribers
Unsubscribes happen, and that’s okay. People unsubscribe to your emails for any number of reasons, but that doesn’t mean you can't lure them back.
When customers ask to be removed from your mailing list, consider building a form that allows them to tell you why, with a few clickable choices. You can also give them the option of limiting their communications with you or customizing what kinds of emails they receive.
Surveys & Review Requests
Your existing customers are a feedback goldmine that you can use to improve your products and services.
Consumer surveys enable customers to tell you directly how to improve your offerings. If you don’t gather customer feedback, you may be doomed to receive negative reviews on social media channels that can be difficult to recover from.
Periodically sending emails requesting surveys and reviews gauge the level of customer satisfaction your customers are experiencing.
Make Special Occasions Extra Special
Everyone likes a birthday shoutout — especially when it comes with a sweet deal! Birthdays and customer anniversaries provide excellent opportunities to make customers feel seen and appreciated.
Pro tip: Help your contacts celebrate by offering wishlist discounts in the email. Adding free shipping could be the icing on the cake.
Asking your existing customers for referrals is beneficial in two ways:
- Referrals leverage the power of social proof. If customers love you, they’ll be happy to share the love with their friends and relatives — especially for a discount.
- Referrals cost less than generating new marketing campaigns, as customer word-of-mouth speaks louder than anything else.
Thank You Emails
Last but not least, say thank you to your loyal customers.
Thank you emails show gratitude to customers for their business, helping build long-term relationships. Thank you emails remind customers that your business is run by humans who appreciate not only their purchases but also their word-of-mouth support for your products and services.
Pro tip: Thanksgiving is a great time to send thank you emails before the rush of the holiday season takes over customer attention.
Struggling With Your Ecommerce Email Campaigns? Get Human Help
The beauty of marketing automation is that there are so many ways you can improve your KPIs.
But building your ecommerce business can seem like a never-ending challenge. After creating the perfect campaign calendar and checking every workflow off your to-do list, you still have a lot of work to do.
That’s where we come in. Human creates responsive, personalized email campaigns that appeal to your target audience with just the right messages at just the right time.
Do you like high open rates, elevated email ROI and revved-up revenue? So do we. Contact us today, and let’s get started creating the best ecommerce email campaigns for your business.