A successful ecommerce strategy has the power to transform an unknown brand into a household-name. Let’s assume your brand sells a good product and your business consistently achieves healthy metrics (conversion rate above 1%, healthy AOV and above 20% returning customer rate). Unfortunately, your heavy reliance on Facebook and Google Ads is simply not letting you reach healthy growth. What should you be looking to optimize next to get there?
Despite ecommerce requiring a holistic approach, many brands focus solely on paid advertising. Sure—social platforms and other channels like Google can be effective for reaching audiences, but they’re not the only ones you should be considering. From your Shopify site to email/SMS marketing, there are numerous factors to consider when building out a strong ecommerce environment.
In particular, email marketing is highly effective for driving ecommerce growth. Just last year, we developed a comprehensive email strategy that helped our client scale from $0 to $300K/month.
Wondering how you can be next? Keep reading to learn how our team can take your brand to new heights by creating a powerful email marketing strategy.
Email marketing helps you convert prospects into loyal buyers. It can even optimize your Facebook ads delivery–making targeting more efficient due to the 180-day window pixel limitation. Your potential customers have already shown interest in your brand by clicking on your ad, and the right email may be all that is missing to seal the deal.
The following are our tried and tested steps to elevate your email marketing game:
Setup Attentive. Attentive is the leading eCommerce tool to help turn website visitors into leads. Featuring a proprietary pop up tool, Attentive captures emails and phone numbers at the highest conversion rates on the market. Beyond just growing your email list, this tool will also allow you to set up SMS campaigns, a powerful ally to any email marketing strategy.
We love using Klaviyo as our email marketing platform.
We’ll start by analyzing your current performance metrics. The higher your AOV, the more extensive this series should be. When working with new clients, we often discover they’ve placed little to no effort on developing an impactful Welcome Series beyond just 1 or 2 emails.
Dismissing the importance of a Welcome Series can result in a huge lost opportunity to convert customers and leave revenue on the table. Remember–once you’ve captured a lead, you have limited time to get them to take action. The earlier you engage with them, the higher the chance of converting them.
A good rule of thumb is that the higher your product’s AOV, the longer your Welcome Series should be given the consideration stage it requires. We’ve found that Welcome Series should be between 3-5 emails for optimal exposure and effectiveness.
Including a discount offer in the final email of the series can be highly effective if reminders do not convert on the first few tries.
Once you’ve calculated how much time it takes
for a customer to receive their order, you can begin timing your triggered post-purchase flow. This series is typically between 4 and 6 emails, and consists an email thanking the customer for their purchase, along with an upsell or cross-sell offer highly relevant to the first purchase made.
The next step is to build out an email content calendar to anticipate key eCommerce events and have a consistent output of communication throughout the year. At Evestar, we plan out our email and SMS campaigns 6-8 weeks ahead. Our sequence typically begins with a promotional calendar, followed by new arrivals, restocks and lastly nurture emails (best-sellers, product features, etc.)
The biggest concern we hear from clients is that they don’t view themselves as “promotional brands” and don’t offer any discounts. At Evestar, we’ll never position a client as a “discount shop,” and we especially stay away from “sitewide” discounts outside of key sales events like Black Friday and Cyber Monday that you cannot afford to miss. Outside of this period, we find creative ways to run promos that translate into winning sales, while maintaining all of your margins.
When running promotions, we capitalize on timing like holidays and 3-day weekends. Whether in-store or online, American consumers are programmed to shop during major American holidays like Memorial Day, 4th of July, Labor Day and of course the Q4 holiday rush. Recognizing this demand allows us to strategically plan out shopper incentives that transform prospective shoppers into profitable ones.
When deployed properly, email marketing can be a highly effective bottom of the funnel channel. The key? Implementation.
It’s important that you don’t send your entire audience weekly emails. Instead, focus on maintaining high open rates and engagement metrics. When you blast your entire audience, you risk compromising your domain and having all of your email end up in SPAM. Once this happens, it’s VERY hard to overturn. One thing that is hard to comprehend at first is that sending emails to less people results in higher volume of open rates. Deliverability is king.
At Evestar, we segment audiences into 4 tiers: T1, T2, T3, T4, with T1 being the most engaged audience and T4 the least engaged. Keeping this in mind, each email campaign needs to be strategically sent to the correct audience. The goal is to find a way to move people out of T4,and into the higher tiers. If they don’t, we clean the email list by creating a strategic sunset flow that will give them one last chance to stay or suppress them through automation. By following Evestar’s email marketing segmentation strategies, our clients have the highest open rates, drive the most revenue and get emails into people’s inboxes, NOT their spam folder.
Next, you will learn how to create aesthetically appealing designs, keeping the top email UX practices in mind. Remember, this is eCommerce — people have never seen your product in person, so email visuals should entice them to want it. Additionally, email aesthetics win over customers’ trust and make brands look established. Of equal importance is having a clear call to action, as well as visible buttons in your emails. Sometimes brands will lay out enticing products but lack a call to action, leaving the potential customer with everything to do… this is not the road to success. Our design team at Evestar has tested thousands of different layouts and photography types to nail down the most impactful email blasts.
Making sure your subject lines and preview text are top notch could be the difference between success and failure. These two simple phrases actually require a lot of thought and consideration for your entire campaign. If you get it wrong… people won’t even SEE the email they were supposed to consider. More than 60% of email recipients send emails to spam after reading a subject line. The bottom line? People are more likely to open an email based on a catchy subject line, 33% in fact. If you could get 30% more business from a well-thought out phrase, would you do it?
Going hand-in-hand with email marketing, SMS marketing uses the power of text messages to circulate a promotional message to an audience. It’s all permission-based, so no one is getting text essages if they didn’t opt in. It’s a convenient way to get in touch with your customers since everyone’s phones are so connected to them these days and the expected open rate of a text message can be 99%. Furthermore, the possibility of an email going unnoticed due to the barrage of emails people receive on a daily basis is lessened, as you now have two avenues by which to contact your potential customers. It only makes sense to cover as many bases as possible chasing attention wherever it resides, and at Evestar we are well equipped to help you capitalize on this potential, both in technical know-how and in experience.