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But most new visitors to your ecommerce store will never return unless you give them a strong enough reason to keep coming back.
This is where ecommerce email marketing comes in.
Ecommerce emails give you the perfect opportunity to build meaningful and long-lasting relationships with your customers.
If done effectively, this means you can boost website traffic, generate more leads and drive more sales.
And we’re going to show you 5 super actionable tips to do just that.
But before we jump in, let’s take a look at the benefits of email marketing for your ecommerce store.
Benefits of Email Marketing for Your Ecommerce Store
#1. It’s easy and inexpensive to get started with
You don’t need much to get started with email marketing, regardless of your marketing expertise.
Really, all you need are the emails of people you want to reach.
And if you already have an email list, great!
If not, you can use lead magnets like forms, quizzes, or popups to collect them (more on this below).
Most email marketing providers offer a free plan which means you can set up and get started in a matter of minutes with little to no costs.
#2. Email marketing has an incredible ROI
We just spoke about how email marketing is both easy and inexpensive to get started with.
But more importantly, it rakes in nearly double the ROI than the second closest channel (SEO) while performing much better than the others.
And it has been reported to fetch as high as $44 for every dollar spent, making email marketing an extremely lucrative channel for your ecommerce store.
#3. You can deliver highly targeted marketing messages
One of the biggest advantages of ecommerce email marketing is the ability to deliver hyper-personalized messages to your audience.
This not only means you can attract and engage the audience that is most likely to do business with you but can also help you differentiate your business from your competitors.
You can do this by segmenting your audience to make sure each of your customers receives extremely relevant emails. This is exactly why email marketing has a high conversion rate and is a powerful driver of sales.
#4. You own your email list and the revenue generated from it
It’s no secret that climbing search rankings on Google and gaining organic reach on Social media have become increasingly difficult.
But with email marketing you’ll have complete control over the entire customer experience and don’t need to rely on the ever-changing rules and regulations of third-party platforms.
Alright, now you know the benefits email marketing can have for your ecommerce store. But, what if you don’t already have an email list?
We’ve got you covered, let’s look at four simple ways to grow your ecommerce email list.
How to Grow Your Ecommerce Email List
#1. Offer something in exchange for emails
A great way to collect emails is by offering something valuable to your audience. This could be anything from a discount, a special offer, or a piece of content.
You can gate your offer with a form requesting visitors to submit their emails. You should experiment with pop-ups, lead magnets, interactive games, etc to find what works best with your audience.
For example, Bailly, the fragrance company, has a promo pop up after a few seconds prompting users to submit their emails to receive 10% off their order.
#2. Ask for emails at checkout
It’s standard practice to ask your customers for their emails at checkout. This is also a great opportunity to take it a step further by asking them to opt-in for future updates by signing up for your email newsletter.
#3. Include a sign-up button on your social channels
More likely than not, your brand is active on at least one social media channel, if not multiple.
Since your followers are already interested in your content, it makes sense to highlight your email as another option to stay up to date.
For example, on Facebook, you can simply include a call-to-action button on your business page. And on Instagram, you can use a tool like Linktree to include multiple links in your bio and set one link to direct visitors to a sign-up form for your email list as Kaja has done.
#4. Build your list outside your website
Your email list-building efforts shouldn’t just be limited to your website. You can also continue growing your list offline through forms or visiting cards at events, conferences, temporary pop-up stalls that you set up, etc.
Great! Now that we’ve got that out of the way. Let’s jump into the five simple tips you can use to supercharge your ecommerce email marketing efforts.
How to Boost Sales at Your Store with Ecommerce Email Marketing
#1. Make a good first impression with a welcome email series
The welcome emails you send sets the foundation for the rest of your communication with a new customer.
This is a great opportunity to share compelling content that establishes authority and builds trust.
What you include in your welcome email series depends on your brand and your audience. But the general purpose is to thank them for subscribing, introduce them to important elements of your brand, and get them to engage with your store.
Here are some best practices to keep in mind for your welcome email series:
- Send your first welcome email the moment someone signs up
- Create compelling subject lines
- Showcase your value proposition upfront
- Include some personalization
- Capture attention with high-quality imagery
- Remind subscribers to remove you from email filters
- Have a clear call to action
Allbirds, the footwear brand, has a simple but powerful welcome email. It is personalized, clearly states the benefit of signing up, and has a clear call to action. Plus, they’ve expressed their brand’s personality with an eye-catching GIF of a sheep (their marquee mascot) dancing.
#2. Personalize your emails for different segments of your audience
Your customer base is made up of individuals with different motivations, interests, and habits. So you’re not going to be able to connect with your entire audience with a single message.
This is why you need to segment your audience into different lists. You can then send emails with content that’s specifically tailored to each audience segment.
You can segment your email list by:
- Stage of the buyer journey
- Device used
Personalizing your emails can help you serve your existing customers better. Additionally, this will help you boost LTVs and is a lot more profitable than trying to sell to brand new customers, five times cheaper in fact.
And withrepeat customers 5x as likely to repurchase and 7x as likely to try a new offering, you can see how this provides a great opportunity for you to upsell and cross-sell your products.
Here are some best practices for your up-sell and cross-sell emails:
- Look at your previous interactions with a customer and make recommendations based on your customer’s needs and goals
- Do it only when your offer adds value to the customer
- Pay attention to the context and timing of your conversation
- Be transparent about your pitches so that customers don’t feel deceived
Dollar Shave Club does this effectively by sending an email giving customers the option to add more products that will be shipped along with their most recent order.
#3. Encourage customers to complete their purchases with cart recovery emails
One of the most frustrating things as an ecommerce owner is having a customer move all the way through your funnel, only for them to abandon their cart at the final step.
And this is a problem that affects the industry as a whole with ecommerce stores losing $18 billion in revenue annually.
Shopping cart abandonment could be for one of many reasons.
For example, it could be because of unexpected shipping costs or an unsatisfactory returns policy. Or perhaps it is due to a lack of payment options or an overly complicated checkout process.
Whatever the reason, the best way to combat this problem is by identifying the main blockers and including recovery emails as part of your workflow. This way you can address the concerns of abandoning customers and encourage them to complete their purchases with well-timed emails.
Here are some best practicesto keep in mind while doing that:
- Sending a follow up an hour after abandonment and two more follow-ups over the next couple of days
- Make sure your emails are well-formatted and to the point
- Highlight products left behind in the cart with reviews and ratings
- A/B test subject lines to find what works better in encouraging clicks and conversions
- Use time-bound incentives like discounts, offers or free shipping to create urgency
- Include your ecommerce helpdesk information so that customers can reach out to you if they’re still facing issues
For example, take a look at how Sunski sends an automated abandoned cart recovery email series to customers who’ve added items to their cart without completing their purchase. They even incentivize them to complete their orders with a coupon to redeem a free add-on.
#4. Make the most out of your shipping receipts
Email receipts have an open rate of 70.9% while marketing emails have an open rate of 17%. Which makes it a great place to get eyeballs on your content and drive more sales.
You can use them to suggest related products, include an option for an add-on before shipping, or a special offer on their next purchase.
But before you start experimenting with extras you’ll first want to ensure your email receipts answer the basic questions customers have like:
- When they can expect to receive the order
- What address you’re shipping to
- How they can track their order
- Where they can ask questions
Here are some other best practices for your order confirmation emails:
- Include a human element by thanking customers for their purchase
- Add social sharing buttons to grow your community
- Ask for feedback to understand what you’re doing well and where you can improve
- Share useful content that helps customers get the most out of their purchase
- Highlight complementary products and the promotions you’re running
- Set up analytics tracking on your links to gain insight into customer behavior
- Answer the most frequently asked questions related to shipping, returns, billing, etc.
Amazon’s shipping receipts ask the user for feedback while providing them with helpful links answering questions related to their purchase as well as an option to contact their support team for additional assistance.
#5. Use email automation to save time
The time you’re not spending running and managing your campaigns is time you can spend doing other revenue-generating activities.
And email automation allows you to create content that gets automatically sent to customers based on their behavior. You can use email automation to:
- Send a welcome email series to new subscribers
- Send abandoned cart emails to shoppers who didn’t complete their checkout
- Notify customers when an item they looked at or left in their cart goes on sale
- Check in with subscribers that haven’t engaged in a while to make sure they still want to be on your list
- Send out birthday, anniversary, and holidays emails to celebrate your subscribers
You want your automated emails to match your brand colors and tone to be easily recognizable. Besides making the design attractive, also make sure the emails you send are well-formatted and also optimized for different devices.
Like with all other emails you send, for your automated emails to be effective they’ll need to be personalized and scheduled at the right time.
So there you have it!
Those are five tips you can use to boost sales with ecommerce email marketing.
However, it’s important to remember this isn’t a one-and-done process. You’ll need to constantly experiment and measure your progress to find the tactics that work best for your store.
But if your email campaigns are personalized and provide genuine value, you’re setting up your email marketing to be a key revenue driver for your ecommerce store.
Jayanth Padmakumar is the Content Marketing Manager for DelightChat, the omnichannel customer support tool for small ecommerce brands. He’s spent the last half-decade living across Egypt, Peru, Colombia, Vietnam, and India. When he’s not geeking out on all things copywriting and content marketing, you can find him watching sports at the nearest watering hole or hiking in obscure spots. You can connect with him on LinkedIn here.