7 Post-Purchase Email Examples to Generate Repeat Customers

7 Post-Purchase Email Examples to Generate Repeat Customers
Aleksandra Jovičić Aleksandra Jovičić Jun 20, 2024 —  7 min read

Effective post-purchase emails do more than just confirm orders.

Whether it’s a thank you note, a product recommendation, or an invitation to leave a review, each email is an opportunity to turn a one-time buyer into a loyal customer.

In this guide, we'll review real-world post-purchase email examples from leading brands and explain why they work well.

Then, we’ll help you get started crafting yours.

What is a typical post-purchase email?

Post-purchase emails are automated emails sent to customers after they’ve purchased on your website.

These emails usually include order confirmations, receipts, and shipping information. But a great post-purchase email workflow goes far beyond that.

You can use post-purchase emails to share product instructions, offer a discount for the next purchase, recommend a complementary item, and so much more!

Take this post-purchase email example from Sundays, a dog food brand.

Sundays sends post-purchase emails featuring facts about the product and customer reviews

This email accomplishes a lot. It boosts the excitement about receiving the order, educates customers about the product, and shows social proof.

You can have more emails than one in your post-purchase sequence, and each email can have its own objective.

For example:

  • The first email in your sequence is an order confirmation.
  • The second email confirms that the order was shipped.
  • The third email cross-sells products relevant to the one they bought.
  • The fourth one asks customers to leave a review after receiving the order.

Now, let’s see what post-purchase emails look like in the real world.

7 Post-purchase email examples you’ll love

Order confirmation emails

First off are the order confirmation emails. The purpose of these emails is to give customers key information about what they purchased, so they can check if there are any inaccuracies in their order.

Customers expect these emails and if you don’t send them out, they may assume something’s wrong (e.g. the order didn’t go through). This would prompt them to reach out to your customer service, overwhelming them with questions you could’ve answered with a simple confirmation email.

To avoid confusion, include this information:

  • Order number
  • List of products with prices
  • The shipment address
  • Estimated delivery dates
  • Relevant links (e.g. tracking status)

Take this BareStomps order confirmation email as an example:

Barestomps order confirmation email

This email is simple and effective. It sets clear expectations and leaves no room for confusion.

What about subject lines? Here are some ideas.

Order confirmation email subject lines:

  • Your order is confirmed: [Product] is on its way!
  • Thank you for your order! Here's your confirmation from [Company name]
  • [Name], your order confirmation is inside
  • Order confirmation for [Product name]
  • Here’s your order confirmation for [Product name]

Shipping confirmation email

The shipping confirmation is a post-purchase email you send after shipping an order to a customer.

While order confirmations are a must-have in your post-purchase sequence, shipping confirmation emails are nice to have. But they’re going to delight your customers.

Here’s an example from Spirit Halloween:

Spirit Halloween shipping confirmation email

This email contains similar information to the order confirmation email:

  • Link to the order details
  • Map with addresses
  • List of shipped items
  • Shipping/billing addresses
  • Link to the receipt

If you’re working on your shipping confirmation email right now, here are five subject line ideas to use.

Shipping confirmation email subject lines

  • A shipment from order [order number] is on the way
  • Your [brand name] order shipped [Receipt number]
  • We just shipped your order!
  • Your [brand name] order is on its way
  • Your order has been shipped, your tracking number is inside

Post-purchase “Thank You” email

The purpose of the “thank you for your purchase” email is to show your gratitude to your customers.

For example, True Classic (a clothing brand for men) sends out a separate thank you email with a personal note from the CEO and information about the company’s involvement with charity organizations.

An example of a post-purchase “thank you” email from True Classic

Subject lines for a post-purchase “thank you” email

Here’s some subject line inspiration for your thank you emails:

  • Thank you for your recent [brand name] purchase
  • Thank you for choosing [brand name]
  • Thank you for shopping with [brand name]

Post-purchase review request emails

After the customer receives their order, you can send them an email asking for a review or a testimonial.

By sending this email shortly after the buyer gets the order, you increase the chances of getting a review.

However, the time frame will vary depending on how long it usually takes customers to try your product.

Here’s what you should include in your review request email:

  • Thank you note for choosing your products
  • Link to where they can leave a review (e.g. TrustPilot, TripAdvisor, Google Reviews, your website, etc.)
  • An incentive to leave a review (e.g. a coupon they can redeem after reviewing your product)

Let’s see a common example.

Haircare brand, Irresistible Me, gives their customers a 10% coupon for each review they leave. They get several benefits from this: a review, a sale, and a happy customer.

Irresistible Me sends a post-purchase email requesting a customer review shortly after purchase

Subject lines for review request emails

What about subject lines for your review request emails? Here they come:

  • We’d love to hear your feedback! Review [company name]
  • Please review your experience with [product name]
  • Review your recent purchase! Help [company name] improve
  • Tell us what you think about [product name]! Leave a review
  • Review [company name] and get 10% off your next purchase

Post-purchase cross-sell emails

Cross-selling emails include product recommendations related to the previous purchase. Your goal is to generate personalized suggestions and increase the number of return customers.

Such emails contain few highly relevant recommendations and don't overwhelm customers with too many options.

Here is a post-purchase email example by Crate&Barrel, featuring a small cross-selling section:

A post-purchase product recommendation email by Crate & Barrel

You can send out a separate cross-sell email or add product recommendations to other post-purchase emails.

For example, below is an email from Grove, a company that sells household and cleaning products. First, they ask the customer to review their latest purchase – and then suggest a few products highly relevant to the previous purchase.

Grove post-purchase cross-selling email

Subject line ideas for post-purchase cross-sell emails

If you’re planning to add product recommendations to your workflow, you can play around with these subject lines:

  • We thought you might like these
  • Thank you for your purchase! You unlocked 20% off
  • Enjoying [purchased product name]? Here is what goes well with it
  • Upgrade your setup: Explore our top recommendations

Post-purchase product onboarding emails

Post-purchase onboarding emails teach customers how to use your product or service in the best possible way.

These emails can contain links to video tutorials, tips on how to start using the product, how to maintain products and more.

Here’s an example from Sephora where they teach their customer how and when to use the serum they purchased.

Sephora’s post-purchase email educates customers on how to use the product they purchased

These emails are also quite common for more complex products, such as electronics or software, where it takes some time to get to know and use the product well.

Here’s an example from Niceboard, job board software, where they share two simple tips for using their platform.

Niceboard post-purchase email helps new customers with the onboarding process

The purpose of onboarding emails is to help customers start getting to know the product without getting completely overwhelmed.

And here’s your subject line inspiration:

  • Welcome to [company name] Pro!
  • Get started with your [subscription name]!
  • Thank you for purchasing [product name]! Here’s what you need to know

5 Tips for crafting great post-purchase emails

1. Provide the key information first

After buying something from you, your customers want to see the key information first. They want to see what they bought, a receipt, and when they’ll get their purchase.

By sending them exactly that, you’ll ensure your customers have all the details of their order in a single place they can refer to if they need to check something.

That reduces the number of inquiries your customer support team gets and provides a smoother experience for everyone involved.

💡 Avoid the temptation to ask for reviews in the first email. If the customer didn’t get the product yet or didn’t have time to use it — they won’t be able to provide a review.

2. Don’t overwhelm your customers

The order and shipping confirmation emails often have the highest open rate. This often prompts brands to add a lot of different elements to these emails: product recommendations, review requests, and whatnot.

That’s not always the best idea.

If the first email is overwhelming and has to many calls to action, customers are likely to react to none of them.

That’s why it’s better to spread your post-purchase CTAs into several different emails.

As you do that, be mindful of how often you email the customers.

For example, nobody likes to receive marketing emails from the same company every day. By sending emails with a few days in between, you’ll remain on top of their mind, without overwhelming them.

3. Offer exclusive discounts

Once somebody becomes your happy customer, it becomes a lot easier to encourage them to come back to your store, than to acquire a new buyer.

They’re on your mailing list, highly aware of your brand, and hopefully, very satisfied with your products.

The best way to entice them to return to your store is by offering exclusive offers and discounts.

One idea we mentioned earlier is to offer a discount in exchange for a review.

Here are a two more ideas:

  • Send an email a month after their purchase with a discount coupon and a few relevant products
  • Give them the option to refer someone or enroll them in a customer rewards program

4. Offer support and helpful resources

A happy customer is the one who makes the most out of their purchase.

By educating them on how to use and maintain the product they bought from you, you’ll build a relationship of trust with them. You’ll also signal that you’re the go-to source for questions and concerns they may come across on their journey with your product.

Here’s how you can support them:

  • Send out tutorials, videos, how-to guides, and tips and tricks they may find helpful

  • Send out maintenance instructions for physical products (eg. jewelry, home appliances, clothes, etc.). You can send these out both in an email and with the product.

  • Provide onboarding sessions by your customer success team for tech products

  • Provide clear instructions on how to get in touch with your customer support team in case they face any issues

5. Automate post-purchase emails

When your business starts growing, sending post-purchase emails manually quickly becomes overwhelming and impossible.

It’s essential that you automate your post-purchase emails and build a workflow. You can start with order and shipping confirmation emails. Then, build on that sequence with more emails as you see fit.

Don’t be afraid to iterate and test different emails to find what works best for your brand.

A great post-purchase sequence will help you retain customers and grow your business on autopilot.

Start crafting your post-purchase emails today

With a set of actionable tips and post-purchase email examples, you’re well set to start creating your sequence.

If you’re on Shopify, you can build your entire post-purchase email sequence with Getsitecontrol – an email marketing app for growing brands. Getsitecontrol helps you get started by giving you access to a large gallery of email templates and guiding you at every step.

Aleksandra Beka is a freelance content consultant for SaaS brands with over 5 years of in-house marketing experience. She specializes in working with MarTech brands and helping them grow their audiences through educational and informative articles.

You're reading Getsitecontrol blog where marketing experts share proven tactics to grow your online business. This article is a part of Email marketing section.

Get the print version

Download a PDF version of our blog post for easier offline reading and sharing with coworkers.

Download PDF