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Five Best Practices for eCommerce Email Marketing

Written by Kevin George on May 23, 2018 Email Marketing, Sell Online.

Email marketing is all about building a relationship with your customers by sending the right communication at the right time. This gets harder as your customer base grows. You probably don’t have time to send one-on-one messages to each one of your subscribers, so how do you scale relationship-building? Email automation.

Now that you have a sense of the email lifecycle and recommended tools, let’s look at five best practices for building customer relationships with email automations.

Email automation uses pre-set workflows and sends specific emails according to conditions you define. This way, your subscribers get personalized emails without you having to keep track of individual conversations. Follow a few best practices for ecommerce email marketing to create seamless, ongoing conversations with your subscribers:

1. Never miss a chance to make a first impression

Welcome emails thank the subscribers for subscribing, make your brand’s first impression, and set subscribers’ expectations. Cover all three bases by surprising new subscribers with a discount coupon, writing copy that conveys your brand’s personality, and highlighting your email sending frequency.

2. Reward loyal customers with something special

Loyalty in a competitive marketplace is hard to find. Reward loyal customers with early bird surprises or special discounts to show your gratitude. Or try asking for their suggestions on your products and services —  being asked for opinions makes people feel appreciated.

3. Invest in a recommendation engine

The eCommerce industry thrives on tailor-made recommendations based on the purchase history of your subscribers. By investing in a recommendation engine, you can automatically send your customers relevant suggestions based on products they’ve purchased, or even just viewed.

4. Bring back inactive subscribers from a deep sleep

Statistically, 60% of any email list is made up of inactive subscribers. Try a series of timed re-engagement emails to re-engage your subscribers and retain more customers. 

Use the first email to remind them that they haven’t purchased from your site in a long time. You miss them and hope they’ll be back!

Set a trigger to send a second email two weeks later, and offer a perk like free shipping or a discount coupon. Finally, use a third email to let them know that if they don’t take action you’ll assume they’d prefer to be removed from your list. 

5. Create a high-performing cart abandonment email

Not all carts are abandoned for the same reason. The top reasons are:

Top reasons for abandoning shopping cart
Top reasons for abandoning shopping cart. Image source: Email Uplers

When tackling cart abandonment, study the behavioral patterns of your customers and create multiple cart abandonment emails that speak to each individual reason.

If you’re new to understanding customer behavioral patterns, read our guide on conversion rate optimization.

Timing and frequency also matters:

  • Send the first cart abandonment email within 60 minutes of abandonment, as a reminder of the products waiting in the cart.
  • The second email should be sent within 24 hours, to notify the customer that the products are in demand and won’t remain in their cart indefinitely
  • The third email can go out within three to five days —  the chances of conversion are low by this time, but you can make one last effort!

Include images of the products in the body of the emails to help the recipient make the connection faster without needing to read the email copy.

Feeling inspired to create some new emails for your WooCommerce customer lifecycle? We hope so! Tomorrow, wrapping up this series, we’ll share some marketing emails we love.


11 Responses

  1. vlgsuthar
    May 25, 2018 at 8:55 am #

    looks like Woocommerce is having issues because the server uses MariaDB instead of MySQL, that would be my guess

    ~]$ mysql –version
    mysql Ver 15.1 Distrib 10.2.11-MariaDB, for Linux (x86_64) using readline 5.1

    giving false notice for wrong database version

  2. Maria Marsala
    May 27, 2018 at 12:06 pm #

    What cart abandonment option plugins do you recommend?

  3. Sayem
    May 28, 2018 at 5:45 pm #

    This is a very important post to grow up E-Commerce business.E-mail marketing is a most important for increasing E-commerce site.
    Thank you for such kind post.

    • jmdartsguddu74
      May 29, 2018 at 5:18 pm #

      Hello sir, How are you thanks your permission and regard

  4. Zubida
    May 29, 2018 at 11:03 am #

    Very informative post. I think, optimizing devices and clients are necessary for ecommerce email marketing. According to survey, 53% of emails are opened on mobile. So, emails should be mobile optimized. However, there are many other devices and different email clients in each device that customers are using to read emails. We need to check how email looks in different devices. There are number of tools out there that will offers previews of email for each device or provider.

    • Marina Pape
      June 1, 2018 at 3:13 pm #

      Great point, Zubida! What tools do you use to check your emails look great across devices?

  5. Shovon
    June 5, 2018 at 11:20 am #

    Great post Kevin. Most of the new online store owners now days are dropshippers and unfortunately they skip so many things and get frustrated within short time. What they miss mostly is email marketing. I am eCommerce developer and consultant, I have seen soo many people who doesn’t even know or don’t care how email marketing can help. They just put some products in their store and run Ads on social media. And when they have visitors but people abandon carts or don’t buy they start asking question in blogs and forums or groups what they are missing. Your article will be helpful for starters. Also I would like mention another article I found specially focused on dropshippers, people should read articles more.

  6. Mike
    June 12, 2018 at 11:07 pm #

    I had a deal with inactive subscribers. I tried lots of methods to get up from a “sleep”. I have to admit the best way was to make the bulk email personalized, which I’ve made it with Remail. It really works well!.

  7. Laurie
    June 25, 2018 at 5:59 pm #

    What plugin do you recommend to collect e-mails from anyone who purchased?