Email marketing is an incredibly powerful asset when done correctly.
In order for it to work, there are a number of things to constantly keep in mind to check up on and improve alongside your ecommerce journey. With continuous efforts, adaptations and optimizations many online stores have been able to attribute 30% (sometimes even higher than that) of their overall revenue to email marketing.
So here are some of the best practices to turn your email marketing into a well-oiled ecommerce growth machine.
Mind your email open rates:
It is super important to keep a close eye and what your open rates are because it not only tells you whether the content of the email is on point but also if start to have low open rates consistently most of the major email inboxes (Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo, etc), which means that in many if not most cases your email campaigns won’t even get delivered to your audience.
So to prevent that you may keep as a rule of thumb that ideally you want to keep your open rates between 15 and 20% (of course that if they’re even higher is great but that also probably means that you should expand the segments of your list that you are sending to) and certainly not under 10%. It’s not the end of the world if one of your emails has an 8% open rate for example but if that happens consistently it could certainly turn into a major problem for your deliverability.
Make sure that your subject lines make your receptions curious and eager to know what’s inside. Choose carefully which segments of your list you are sending to. If your open rates are too low, for example, and you’ve been sending to engaged buyers in the last 200 days, you might want to drop that to engaged buyers in the last 140 days.
The importance of campaigns and a content calendar:
With campaigns it’s important to have consistency not only to have a more steady and predictable revenue, but also to nourish and maintain your list engaged (a good example for this would be to send a weekly newsletter among your campaigns mix).
Having a content calendar tailored specifically to your industry is also incredibly valuable. For example, if you’re selling army/ military apparel to an audience that’s predominantly American, sync your promotions with military celebrations and holidays. A great example for this would be the 4th of July promotions when you could invoke patriotism through a well-designed template and potentially earn a lot more revenue.
Email marketing 101: Split tests
The importance and benefit of constantly doing split or A/B tests cannot be overstated as it compounds positively with time if done properly.
Some of the things on emails that you must test are:
- Subject lines and preheaders
- text to image ratio
- Long copy vs short copy
- emotional angle vs sales focused angle
- Sending times
- Copy for CTA buttons
- how often should you use headings
It’s also worth keeping in mind that these may be different according to the type of campaign that you are sending. For eg. maybe longer copy works better on the newsletters and the shorter copy works better for promotional emails and that could be true for all the other ideas for split tests mentioned earlier.
Have a clear Call To Action (CTA)
When creating a campaign or an automated flow, it is important that you have only one clear call to action which ideally is to make a purchase. So the key with this is consistency with the button copy, the buttons don’t necessarily need to have the exact copy but their intent and message needs to be one and the same across the entire email.
So let’s say that the Call to Action is to direct the recipients to make a purchase so you can have 3 buttons across the email each saying: “view item now”,” buy now” or “shop now” with the same product page url and it’s all one CTA message being conveyed.
A bad example would be a newsletter with the first call to action saying something like “learn more” and then a second button saying “ Get in touch” and a third button at the bottom of the email saying “Buy Now”.
Make sure you have automated flows in place:
One of the main sources of revenue with email marketing comes from flows (which are automated sequences of emails that we send to recipients based on their actions on a website/store).
Usually one of the flows that makes the most amount of money is the Welcome flow which is the sequence of emails people get when they first subscribe to the company’s newsletter or email marketing program. It’s a given that the design, copy and discounts all need to be on point and be split tested constantly, but here’s a little pro tip, usually shorter time delays in between the emails works better for younger audiences and the opposite is true for older ones, but that also requires testing.