You might have read our recent blog post where we talked about ways to increase e-commerce revenue. We discovered that one of the quickest ways to make more money online is not to waste resources trying to find more customers when you can be selling more to your existing customers.
And how do you do that? By using an effective email marketing strategy of course!
Email marketing is by far the easiest and most cost-effective way to nurture and maintain existing customer and sales lead relationships. For those that are doing it right, you can create a consistent channel of communication with people you know are keen to buy from you or are at least interested in your services.
An effective email marketing strategy also opens the window to interact with your customer about new products, events, blog content, new features, promotions or even a general 'Thank You' email.
Every email presents an opportunity to put your product front and center with your audience. An audience that has already shown enough interest to give you their contact information. Therefore, giving you a higher chance of converting to a paying customer.
Here are 9 ways to maximise your email marketing strategy.
1. Get People onto Your Mailing List
As soon as you launch your eCommerce store, you need to start building your email list immediately. Having an email list is fundamental to any email marketing strategy - without contacts you have no one to target. Building an email list with your specific target audience is a critical element in any marketing strategy. Not only does it save you money on advertising spend, but it also generates sales.
So, how do you get people to join your mailing list?
Firstly, you can start by saving your customer’s name and email address when they purchase a product from you. Another way is to implement a ‘Join Mailing List’ pop up that will appear when people visit your website.
You can also offer a coupon and encourage potential customers to register in exchange for a discount code. If you have a blog that generates a lot of traffic, you can create a section allowing people to join your mailing list for the latest blog updates.
2. Email Regularly
To put bluntly, the more emails you send, the more chance you have of increasing sales via email. Clearly, there needs to be a balance between sending too many emails and being seen as a spammer. Don't forget, the unsubscribe button is always close by. If people aren’t clicking it, you can assume you're doing something right.
Aim for at least one email a month, with the goal of keeping your business front of mind. Make sure your emails are well crafted, using simple language and a friendly tone. Avoid generic, 'sales-y' emails as this is a sure way to get people to unsubscribe.
My top tip is to have a strong subject line. Write something that will immediately grab the reader's attention. And finally, don't forget that most people check their emails on their mobile phone. Make sure your emails are optimised for desktop and mobile.
3. Get Seasonal
A great time to run email campaigns is during seasonal periods throughout the year, i.e., Christmas, January sales, Valentine’s Day, Mothers/Fathers Day, Black Friday, Thanksgiving, etc. Promotional emails are expected during these events, and there is a higher likelihood that online shoppers are ready to spend.
Let's take Cyber Weekend for example. It's common knowledge that millions of people are online hunting for bargains, in time for the upcoming Holiday Season. By sending a promotional email, you're letting subscribers know you've got a few bargains they should check out.
When sending out seasonal emails, make sure your products correlate with each season. There's no point telling subscribers about your latest bikini collection during the Winter season.
4. Target Abandoned Carts
Email marketing is an excellent way to target online shoppers who have shown interest in your product but didn’t complete their purchase. Research shows that 68.81% of shopping carts are abandoned online.
These are people who placed items in their online shopping baskets but didn't make a payment. Segmenting these customers into a dedicated 'Abandoned Cart' campaign is a great way to complete the sale. If there's only one email campaign that you implement, Abandoned Cart is by far the most important.
5. Segment your Audience
It's impossible that every email you send will be relevant to every single subscriber on your email list. This is why you need to segment your customers according to specific criteria. By doing this, you will reduce the unsubscribe rate and reduce the risk of being marked as spam.
Each email campaign should be relevant to the specific segment you are targeting. This will improve the conversion rate, and ultimately lead to more sales. Examples of audience segmentation are gender, age, location, previous purchases, etc.
Creating segmented email campaigns removes the generic feel of a mass email, instead, it provides a more tailored email experience for your customer. Another great way to increase trust and loyalty.
6. Interrogate the Data
There is an abundance of data available for email marketing. Making sure you know which data is relevant is essential for those who want to optimise their email campaigns. Thankfully, most email marketing tools have inbuilt analytics that helps you figure out what email campaigns are working.
Once you know what things to keep an eye on, you can tweak your email campaigns to increase conversions. Here's our list of things to watch out for:
- How many people opened your emails
- Which content is converting into sales
- What's your core customer location
- Which links get the most clicks
- Was your email viewed on desktop or mobile
- How many sales did you get out of the email campaign
- How many people unsubscribed
- What type of content gets the most engagement
7. A/B Testing
A/B testing is another form of web/marketing analytics. A/B testing is the process of testing out two versions of the same email, with the goal of finding out which one performed better. Most A/B test campaigns compare different subject lines, email content, various call-to-action placements, and colours.
The trick with A/B testing is to only focus on testing one specific variable. It's very easy to get carried away, making significant changes to each version. Using this method makes it very difficult to understand what actually worked. So, start small and adjust your email campaigns according to your findings.
8. Use MailChimp
For anyone getting started with their email marketing, Shopify has a fantastic integration with MailChimp. Meet MailChimp for Shopify. Chimpified automatically syncs new customers to your MailChimp account from your Shopify admin panel. You can also add customers to specific segments, helping to create a more tailored experience for your subscribers.
You can schedule automatic customer data migrations, meaning you don't have to worry about managing the process manually. Using Chimpified, customers who subscribe to your mailing list will be automatically added to your email campaign.
You can also target customers based on buyer behaviour, with the goal of increasing customer loyalty and repeat business.
Oh, did we mention it was FREE?
Last but certainly not least is how email marketing can improve branding. Quite simply, email marketing gives businesses an excuse to build and maintain a relationship with their customers. Emails are a great way to provide valuable, exclusive content and increase overall brand awareness.
Bearing this in mind, it's vital that you don't use every email communication as an opportunity to sell something. Mix it up a little by sharing your latest blog post, latest ecommerce trends or even a fun gif just to wish them a good day. While this might not result in immediate conversions, it goes a long way in boosting brand loyalty and awareness.
So there you have it. 9 ways you can use email marketing to boost sales. The bottom line is, there's no point trying to get new customers when you're not optimising your current ones.As Shopify Plus Experts, our customers have seen the benefits of email marketing campaigns we've implemented. We take care of the strategy, content, design, analytics, and optimisation. If you need help getting started or even just some advice on your current email marketing strategy, book a free consultation today.