Email is a powerful medium that can be used to generate more e-commerce sales while helping to improve customer satisfaction in the process.
In fact, Email marketing accounts for over 7% of all ecommerce transactions, making it the second most effective ecommerce marketing channel behind search (15.8%) according to a 2013 study by Custora.
So what makes email marketing so effective? Savvy online eCommerce businesses send strategic emails based on customer behavior. Even if your primary source of e-commerce sales comes elsewhere (e.g. paid search traffic, SEO, word of mouth, etc.), you can start boosting conversions by marketing to those who've already shown interest in your products. And best of all, email is probably the most cost-effective approach to generating new sales.
Here are five tips to help you maximize your eCommerce e-mail program.
1. Auto-Check Newsletter Signup During Checkout
Email marketing only works if you have a decent number of email addresses to whom you can promote your products.
There are dozens of legitimate and effective ways to collect email addresses, although one of the easiest is to include an auto-checked newsletter signup form in your e-commerce site's checkout process. When a customer buys a product, ask if he or she would like to sign up for your newsletter to receive special discounts and promotions - and make this option auto-checked by default.
2. Recommend Similar Products
Don't just blindly advertise random products to your customers and prospective customers via email. Instead, recommend relevant products based on their behavior and/or purchase history. If a customer has purchased a new leather jacket, for instance, then perhaps he or she would also be interested in a leather conditioning product.
Known as "cross-selling," this is a great way to generate multiple sales from a single customer.
3. Encourage Customers to Review Purchased Products
After a customer purchases a product on your e-commerce website, send him or her an email asking them to review the product.
A study conducted by Figleaves found a 12.5% increase in conversion rates on e-commerce products with reviews. For products containing 20 or more reviews, conversion rates jumped by a whopping 83.85%.
Set up an email campaign to automatically ask customers to review their purchased products.
4. Birthdays and Anniversary Emails
Thousands of big-name stores and retail businesses use this strategy, so why aren't you?
Set up an email campaign to automatically deliver happy birthday and anniversary messages to your subscribers.
According to one study, personalized birthday and anniversary messages had a 500% higher transaction rate when compared to generic, non-personalized messages.
5. Segmenting Your Audience
To reiterate, effective email marketing campaigns are focused on your customer's behavior - so, it makes sense to segment your customer list into more focused groups. This will help ensure that your message is highly relevant, thereby increasing the likelihood of conversion.
MailChimp found that when their users segmented email lists based on data like location and job title, open rates increased by almost 19%, and click-through rates by almost 22% compared to non-segmented sends.
You can also segment your list based on elements such as; purchase history, product interest, geography, mobile vs desktop purchase, gender, etc.
What you should know
In order to maximize your e-mail marketing efforts, you need to get to know your audience and then start following up with emails based on their interests. Before you know it you'll be rock'n the email marketing and increasing sales along the way.