eCommerce marketing can involve the usage of every marketing channel out there. Depending on the motive, the niche, the budget and the required scale, eCommerce marketers spend a considerable amount of time in trying to figure out the best channel for their stores.
‘Email’ is one of the most effective channels for online stores accounting for 19.8% of all transactions. The Data & Marketing Association has found that the average ROI for every $1 spent on email marketing is $38.
One of the best things about email as a marketing channel is that it's a true platform.
It is because of these reasons that marketers swear by their opt-in email lists and creating one should be a priority for every kind of online business - including online stores.
Most eCommerce marketers invest in email marketing. Few are doing it right.
eCommerce marketers have realized the cost benefits of building an email list of relevant prospects, and invest time and effort into optimizing their websites for more signups or opt-ins.
But an average working professional has to deal with more than 100 emails a day.
To be really effective in eCommerce email marketing it's necessary to understand and segment the customer list, set up the right sequences, and personalize and optimize the messaging. It's important to reach the right group of subscribers at the right time with the right message. You wouldn't want to send a 'welcome' email to a frequent buyer. This is when having all the right tools set up becomes essential.
There are multiple email service providers out there for businesses. Most providers promise high-deliverability along with one or more capabilities/merits like better segmentation, behavior tracking, cost-effectiveness, easier automations, etc. MailChimp is the most popular service provider out there for marketing emails and services like Amazon SES and Sendgrid are popular for transactional emails. Let's look some of the necessary email marketing software features for an eCommerce marketer:
Further, having some of these add-on features can make your life easier:
There are tens of email service providers popular among different types of businesses for various purposes. We've tried many of them and have concluded that when it comes to eCommerce email marketing automation, Klaviyo is the best software. I’ll talk more about Klaviyo later.
Transactional emails are triggered when a customer interacts with a website/app and performs certain actions. Examples of this would be order-confirmation emails, account-creation emails, password-reset emails, etc.
Marketing emails are often sent to push the customers to take some actions and move them down the funnel. They include emails sent during customer onboarding (welcome series), during cart abandonment, as newsletters, sales and promotions, etc. I'm mostly covering marketing emails here. Let's look at all the types of marketing emails you can send as an eCommerce marketer.
2. Interest and Consideration:
We’ll delve deeper into some of the more important emails now.
The first few emails your subscribers receive after joining your email list are some of the most important messages of the customer journey. The subscribers are expecting them and you’ll probably receive the the highest open rates for these emails. These emails make your subscribers accustomed to engaging with your brand via email and set the tone of your relationship.
Crafting impactful welcome emails:
Abandoned carts are one of the biggest problems for eCommerce stores. But it’s also a major opportunity. Converting even a portion of the lost carts can boost your revenue.
According to SalesCycle, 75.6% of carts are abandoned.
There are a couple of ways to reach to customers who have abandoned a cart - email is certainly the best one. Like welcome series emails, abandoned cart emails are also known to get good open rates. Here are a few tips which you can incorporate in your strategy:
People are more likely to buy a product that is referred to them by a person they trust.
Referral marketing is a great way to get new customers and these customers also give you the best store conversion rate. Most growing eCommerce brands have some sort of a referral program.
Marketers spend weeks in designing and implementing a good referral marketing strategy. And the ‘introduction’ of it to the current customers is as important as the program itself.
Here are a few things that you will need to keep in mind while introducing your referral program over email.
Contrary to popular belief, ‘newsletters’ when done right - actually works. Newsletters are a great way to stay in touch with your customers without seeming too pushy. If you’re able to captivate your audience with interesting content, they will become more loyal to your brand.
Use these tips while creating your next newsletter:
Consumer email clients have sophisticated algorithm to prevent spam and abuse of the technology. While you will definitely be able to reach a valid email's mailbox, the inbuilt filters may direct your email to the spam folder if it detects abuse. Whether you are sending a newsletter or an order confirmation email, here are some tips you can follow to make sure that subscribers notice your emails.
It’s a big challenge to get people to open, then read your emails and then to go on to click through. If things don’t go as planned, it’s most likely because of your email copy. I’ve already mentioned above that it’s important to create an enjoyable, captivating and functional email.
Here's how you can craft emails that your subscribers will wait for:
1. Be relatable to your subscribers
Customers do not like receiving automated messages. Send only relevant emails at the right time.
2. Stress benefits over features
If you're a marketer, you've heard this a million times. People love unicorns because they seem magical, not because they have a horn.
3. Keep it simple and brief
You want your readers to move over to the next step quick. Make it easy to consume.
4. Write in the second-person voice
The second-person point of view means talking to your subscribers as though they were right in front of you.
5. Be personal
Write like the reader is really before you and you want to impress them. Take their name, let them know you are noticing them (not in a creepy way) and show them that you(a real person) exist. Your automation tool should be tracking their on-website behavior.
6. Only promise what you can deliver
Think why customers are still subscribed to you before you start writing the copy. Being honest will always earn you respect and trust.
7. Choose words that invoke emotions
Word choice matters. Check your thesaurus and find words that sums up what you want to say, better.
8. About you
You started this company(or are a part of it) for a reason. You saw a gap, a customer pain point that everyone else was overlooking or you have faced the problem yourself. Given them a picture of yourself so that the next time they receive your email, they'll visualize the person behind it too.
9. Tell a story
Storytelling always helps. Just keep it short and relevant to your business.
10. Monitor and keep testing
Test your subject lines, your images, CTAs to a small group of audiences before sending the email to everyone. Optimize incrementally.
11. Be lovable when appropriate
That sounds a little touchy-feely, doesn’t it? Yet it works with some brands.
12. Be consistent
We've seen many email hyper-optimized for just opens - with a cool subject line. But with a bland body. Be consistent across your subject line, images, body-text, and CTA.
A Little Bit about Klaviyo
I'd briefly expressed my love for Klaviyo above. Klaviyo has positioned themselves as experts in the eCommerce field and we, after comparing it with multiple other leading providers for many of our clients, understand why.
Most businesses who move to Klaviyo see a significant jump in revenues within months of switching. Shopify stores make $85 for every dollar they spend on Klaviyo. Though it may seem expensive initially, we've seen it pay for itself and more.
Read our detailed analysis of Klaviyo here.
Email is an integral part of modern communication with almost every internet user having one. It certainly cannot be ignored and a half-hearted approach will not take us anywhere. Mastering eCommerce Email Marketing takes time. You have to focus on optimizing each email at a time. But once you’re set, the returns are humongous.
If you'd like to mention some other effective eCommerce email marketing tip that I forgot, let me know in the comments and I'd get back to you right away.