Do you want to make email marketing one of your core revenue-generating channels, but you don’t know where to begin? We get it, there are many types of marketing emails you can send, and with so many options available, it’s easy to get overwhelmed.
Fortunately, you came to the right place. In this article, you will learn about the seven types of emails you should be sending to get more sales in your Shopify store.
Are you ready? Let’s begin.
1. Abandoned cart emails
What it is: Abandoned cart emails remind potential customers about the products they left on the shopping cart to incentivize them to finish the purchase.
If there is such a thing as a “low-hanging fruit” in the ecommerce marketing world, this is it. Ignoring to target an abandoned cart is like leaving money on the table. After all, the people who leave products on their cart are almost ready to purchase; you are recovering lost money by messaging them.
A Barclaycard survey in the United Kingdom found that abandoned carts represent more than £18 billion (almost $24 billion) in lost sales every year. More importantly, this email type generates the following (and incredible) results, according to data by SaleCycle:
- An average abandoned cart rate of 81.08%
- An average open rate of 40.1%
- An average conversion rate of 24.18%
Source: Really Good Emails
To get started with abandoned cart emails, here's what you need to do:
- Send anywhere from one to three emails spaced in between three to five days after the shopper left a product in their cart
- Send the email within the first 48 hours of said event
- Use a subject line that reminds the visitor of the product (something like “Did you forget something?”)
- Use dynamic content to showcase the abandoned products
- Make it concise; it's all about the purchase, nothing more
2. Win-back emails
What it is: A win-back email re-engages past customers or subscribers that have stopped buying or opening their emails.
Online retailers use win-back email campaigns to increase engagement rates, deliverability, and purchase frequency from underperforming email lists.
Although inactive subscribers are often ignored, they are a costly reality. According to Return Path, the average ecommerce business has 66% of inactive subscribers. By trimming an email list from inactive subscribers, companies can save money on their email marketing service provider and increase their marketing effectiveness — after being reactivated, 45% subscribers read subsequent emails, according to Return Path.
To create a win-back email, you need to focus on catching the recipient’s eye by using a click-worthy subject line. Some retailers do so by offering an incentive, like a discount. Others simply tell their subscribers they want them back, like Netflix:
Regarding the email content, you want to remind the subscriber about your products and value proposition. You can even share any news they may have missed, like a new product launch.
A win-back email campaign often consists of three to five emails spaced a few days. After the campaign is over, you will need to delete the subscribers that didn’t get or open your emails.
3. Welcome emails
What it is: A welcome email introduces a customer or subscriber to your brand.
By welcoming a customer to your brand, your company can develop a connection with your audience, making you stand out from the generic competition that focuses solely on promotions and sales.
Most importantly, they work. A report by Hive.co found that welcome emails see an average 91.43% open rate and 26.9% click-through rate, which sit higher than the industry benchmarks according to Mailchimp’s public data.
Welcome emails can be sent as a one-time message or a sequence of messages, much like a post-purchase campaign (but without focusing on loyalty and purchase frequency).
In the first welcome email, you start by greeting the customer or subscriber. You can share some of your company's background, its people, and its value proposition. You also want to set expectations for what they can expect to get from your company.
Source: Email Design
In the following emails, you continue to send relevant information about your products (such as tutorials) and your company. Discounts can also work, but they must be connected with your brand — if low prices aren’t an essential aspect of it, don’t use them.
4. Seasonal emails
What it is: A seasonal email promotes a marketing campaign around a specific season or holiday. Some examples include:
- Father’s day
- Mother’s day
- National holidays
- Black Friday
Source: In Design Skills
Companies also use seasonal changes to send this type of email. One case is when they change their products from one season to another (e.g., Autumn-Winter to Spring-Summer). Although this practice is common in the fashion industry, it also applies to other industries.
Ultimately, a “season” varies by industry. You need to identify those critical moments and create marketing campaigns — not just email ones — around them.
Both the subject line and content should relate to the seasonal change — why you are messaging them — and include the promoted products. You can also give a special discount on these products, either to liquidate your stock or celebrate the date.
What’s more, an email marketing campaign of this nature should include several emails that lead to the date, depending on the event. In the beginning, you want to send around one email per week. As you get closer to the date, send two or three emails per week, and on the final date, send one or two more emails. Such is the case for online retailers during Black Friday and Christmas, two of the largest shopping days in the Western world.
As you execute this type of marketing campaign, you will learn the ideal number of emails to send and how many you want to send in advance.
5. Promotional emails
What it is: A promotional email advertises a specific product (or set thereof). In a sense, this email type is similar to a seasonal email, except that the former relates to a specific date. In contrast, a promotional one celebrates a date the retailer deems important.
For example, you may want to celebrate your foundation date with a unique, aggressive sale. Such a case wouldn’t be a seasonal campaign, but a promotional one.
Promotional emails are the most common type of marketing email used by companies. They are also popular among recipients, as a survey found that 86% of recipients would like to receive promotional emails at least monthly, 61% weekly, and 15% daily.
You can also use a promotional email campaign to get rid of unsold stock, boost your cash flow, and hit your KPIs (especially when it's closer to a quarter-end).
Promotional emails usually give purpose to the campaign by including purchase incentives, such as discounts and free shipping. Companies also use scarcity signals like countdown timers and limited quantities to further boost their promotions.
Source: Mail Bakery
6. Loyalty emails
What it is: A loyalty email fosters the recipient’s preference for their brand over the competition — in other words, loyalty.
Often overlooked, loyalty emails allow a company to retain its customers long-term. In turn, companies can expect to see higher lifetime customer values (i.e., the amount of money a customer spends over their lifetime) and lower marketing spending.
A loyalty email usually includes promoting a loyalty program (a loyalty program isn't the only way to elicit customer loyalty). In it, customers get rewards for different actions, such as:
- Purchasing over a certain threshold
- Purchasing certain products
- Following the brand on social media
- Giving feedback
- Creating user-based content
- Filling their account profiles
- Referring friends
Loyalty programs benefit both the retailer and the consumer. A study by InMoment found that 60% of consumers will purchase more frequently from their preferred companies; 50% will also buy more.
7. Post-purchase emails
What it is: A post-purchase email shows the appreciation a company has towards its new customer.
Post-purchase emails matter because they improve the customer experience, which relates to their propensity to become loyal over time (and without the need for a loyalty program to do so). Some examples of post-purchase emails include:
- Sending surveys to gather customer feedback about the purchase experience
- Asking for a product review
- Sending a discount for a future purchase
- Informing the customer about the return policy and customer support
In one way or another, all of these ideas focus on making sure the customer is happy with the purchase. We know you don’t want any returns, but unfortunately, some people will need one; helping them do so will create goodwill, making the customer more likely to purchase.
A study found that post-purchase emails generate:
- An average 40.5% open rate, a 6.4% click rate, and a 0.7% conversion rate across all follow-up emails.
- An average 65% open rate, a 10.4% click rate, and a 1.4% conversion rate across all digital receipts.
As the name implies, companies send post-purchase emails after a customer finishes a purchase. Therefore, it's crucial you segment your campaigns accordingly.
A post-purchase campaign can include one to five emails distributed over one to two weeks. Every email in this sequence introduces the customer to the company and its products.
Part of the reason why these seven types of marketing emails work is because they have a purpose, making them relevant to the subscribers. Whether your email is promotional, informational, or educational, they provide value.
When crafting an email (or sequence), you must put yourself on your subscribers' feet. Remember, they receive dozens of emails per day. Your email has to stand out and give them something they want.
When you are planning your next email marketing campaign, make sure that it follows the following crucial principles:
- Segment your email list so that only those that truly need the email will get it
- Personalize your content based on the consented data you have acquired, such as demographic and behavioral
- Test your subject lines a few times until you find one that balances performance and open rates
- Analyze your results by the time of the day and optimize your campaigns so that your recipients get the emails in the best time possible
- Focus your emails (or campaigns) on one goal
Ivan Kreimer is a freelance content writer for hire who creates educational content for SaaS businesses like Leadfeeder and Campaign Monitor. In his pastime, he likes to help people become freelance writers. Besides writing for smart people who read sites like Getsitecontrol, Ivan has also written in sites like Entrepreneur, MarketingProfs, TheNextWeb, and many other influential websites.
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