You’ve built a great eCommerce store; people are starting to find you, and sales are coming in. That’s great but are you following up with them? One of the most significant opportunities you have to build loyal customers and repeat business is by implementing an email strategy into your marketing efforts.
Anyone that has signed up for your newsletter or coupon code or bought from you and provided their email address is a “warm lead.” That means they already know something about you, and you’re building trust with them. They are far more likely to make another purchase from you than a cold lead who knows nothing about you or your brand. They are the easiest ones to keep as customers, provided you keep in contact with them and keep your brand fresh in their mind.
One of the biggest mistakes you can make is not communicating with people who have already shown interest in your eCommerce store. In today’s busy online world, out of sight, means out of mind. There are so many stores competing for your customer that if you’re not doing everything you can to stay in front of them, you’ll lose them.
That being said, here are three primary email strategies you can implement today:
- Welcome emails
- Abandoned cart reminder emails
- Thank you with upsell emails
As the name suggests, if someone signs up for your email list or just purchased from you, then you should be sending them a welcome email. It should confirm their subscription and remind them what they signed up for, thank them for their interest and introduce your brand. This is an excellent way for them to get to know you better.
You can set this up with most transactional email providers like MailerSend to automatically get triggered to go out within 15 minutes. You want them to receive it while your store is still fresh in their minds. If you wait until a few hours later or the next day, they’ve most likely already forgotten about you and why they signed up. The only exception to this would be sending receipts immediately after purchase. Then you’d want to delay your welcome email to them for 30 to 60 minutes. That way, your emails aren’t arriving too close together.
Use dynamic content so that your emails are personalized. Ensure that the email addresses them by using their name and any other information specific to their reason for giving you their email address. You can add a line about the specific blog they signed up from or the pop-up message on your website. This gives it a personal feel and reminds them why they wanted to hear more from you.
Attach a picture that showcases one of your products and ways for them to keep in touch with you on social media. You can also include a coupon code so shoppers can enjoy a discount or a specific amount off their next purchase.
Here’s one example of a welcome email from Banana Republic:
Many people browse sites, add items to their shopping carts and then lose interest or get distracted and don’t complete the sale.
With an abandoned cart email, you can remind them to come back to your eCommerce store and complete their purchase. These emails can show pictures of the products in their shopping cart, and with a click of a button, they can quickly return to complete the purchase. Including a ‘contact us’ option provides an easy way for them to contact you if they have any questions about the purchase.
Send the first email out within 8-24 hours as the window to get them back is generally short. Send a second, follow-up email, reminding them of the products they were interested in within three days. You can send a third reminder within seven days with a discount code to entice them to purchase. I wouldn’t suggest doing any more than three.
If they didn’t come back after the third reminder, they most likely won’t. If you keep sending emails after that, they could develop a negative impression of your store and flag your emails as Spam.
Thank You Emails
When a customer has purchased something from you, they want to know you noticed. They don’t want to be a random number. A thank you email is a great way to do that. It goes a long way to building a great relationship with your customers by letting them know you appreciate them, and it builds a positive brand image.
Buying online removes the personal aspects of shopping that you get when you visit a brick and mortar store; therefore, you need to put some personal into their online shopping experience. A thank you email gives you a chance to provide a personal touch to an otherwise impersonal transaction for your customers.
You can also include tutorials on how to use the product or service, how to care for it like special cleaning instructions if it applies, or how to dress it up. There are so many ways to add a touch of “extra” to your thank you emails that will set your brand apart. Doing something a little different that benefits your customer will build your brand and make you memorable, so the next time your customer wants to purchase, they remember the great experience they had with your store.
For example, if they purchased jeans, send them a thank you email and include a picture of someone in an outfit that shows the jeans with a great top or coat and boots, preferably ones you sell. If you don’t have that type of photo, make a collage photo that shows the jeans with other accessories all laid out together. It’s acknowledging you know what they bought and gave them an outfit idea. It makes it personal, and it could even spur them to purchase those accessories from you.
Another example is to add answers to common questions with your thank you email. Do customers keep asking the same questions? Provide those answers in your thank you email to cut down on post-sale questions. Customers will appreciate that they don’t have to hunt for the answers or contact you to get them. This can help reduce returns.
Every one of these emails can be set up with automated sequences through programs like MailerSend, Klaviyo or AutomateWoo so you can provide excellent customer experiences through your email campaigns while taking the burden off you to remember to send them.
These three emails – welcome emails, abandoned cart emails and thank you emails – can provide that much needed personal feel for your customers and leave a great lasting impression of your brand.
Kalleigh O’Togher is the founder of Zealous Social, a digital growth firm for the service and manufacturing sectors. She is passionate about helping brands leverage real growth strategies to meet today’s business challenges.