The use of email marketing in the eCommerce industry is huge, after all most of us only need to scroll through our inboxes to realise that. While the majority of the big retail brands have got it covered with their regular newsletters, promotions and automated welcome, birthday and shopping cart reminder emails, there is a huge untapped opportunity for small to mid-sized retail businesses to leverage email and use it to attract, engage, convert and retain customers.
With this in mind, here are three tips on how to best use email marketing for eCommerce and ultimately increase your sales.
Continually develop your mailing list
Growing your email mailing list, whether it be from scratch or as an ongoing effort, can be daunting, but fortunately for eCommerce brands there are a number of things you can do to encourage both prospective and existing customers to subscribe to your email campaigns.
While it is arguably easier to encourage existing customers to opt-in to receiving email communications from your brand, building a list of prospective customers can be more of a challenge. The key thing to remember here is that you will need to incentivise them and offer something
f value, in exchange for their email address. For many types of businesses, one of the most effective ways to do this is through the use of an online contest, which could be anything from £300 worth of vouchers, to a year’s supply of one of your products, or even one of your products.
Either way, it will have to be something lucrative and of value.
Another popular way to grow your eCommerce mailing list is by offering either a discount or free or reduced shipping, once they sign up for your newsletter.
Don’t just send an email newsletter
While it is likely you will want to create a regular email newsletter, there are various types of emails you can, and should, be sending your email subscribers.
Welcome emails are not only incredibly successful, achieving an average open rate of 50% and generating 320% more revenue per email than other promotional campaigns, but they are also increasingly expected by customers – specifically 74.4%.
If you’re wondering what to include in this type of email, we have included three welcome email examples below:
Welcome Email Example One - Abercrombie & Fitch
Welcome Email Example Two - GAP
Welcome Email Example Three - Kate Spade New York
Additionally, shopping cart abandonment emails can be incredibly powerful for increasing conversions, after all these customers have already shown intent to buy an item from you, and a simple reminder can persuade them to complete the purchase.
While this is a simple example of re-engagement emails, additional emails of this kind include simply reaching out to past customers with an ‘It’s been a while [First Name], we’ve missed you. Get 20% off your next order!’ type of email. By also including a time critical discount, you instil a sense of urgency and subsequently increase conversions.
Bonus content: Find out 15 innovative marketing ideas to boost your online sales.
Ensure your emails actually drive action
Email campaigns are all well and good, but if you’re not actually driving any action then they are likely a wasted effort.
Before anything else, we should point out that this action doesn’t always have to be a sale. While this is obviously a key focus, eCommerce email campaigns can also encourage a number of other things, including encouraging customers to read your blog, leave a review or whitelist your emails.
Regardless of which action your email focuses on, you should always use high-quality call-to-actions (CTAs). In other words, they should be easily identifiable as people tend to scan promotional emails, and contain compelling language that ultimately entices the recipient to click through.
Another important thing to consider is the email subject line. At the end of the day, no matter how great your email is, if you fail to grab the recipient’s attention, then your email probably won’t get read.
For this reason, you should ensure that your subject line uses words and phrases that both piques their interest and creates a sense of urgency, while also using actionable language such as “buy”, “purchase” and “take”.
Personalisation is also another great way to increase open rates.
Of course, perfecting effective email templates can take time. Time that you may not have, especially if you're selling on multiple platforms and marketplaces.
Focus on reducing your workload as much as possible, such as through automated inventory management software, so that you can benefit from more freedom to grow your online business.