ecommerce email marketing

Cha-Ching: 5 Ways to Leverage Email Marketing for E-Commerce

Want to increase online sales? Start by investing in an e-commerce email marketing strategy.

Email is praised by digital marketers for being a tried-and-true channel. Why? It has a high ROI ($36 for every $1 spent), a jaw-droppingly high user base (4.26 billion users and counting), and unlike social media or SEO, an algorithm change won’t collapse your well-crafted strategy.

Due to all of the above, email marketing is still the go-to channel for boosting e-commerce business. According to the 2022 Email Benchmark Report by Adweek, 76% of business leaders state that email made a positive impact on their business in 2021 (up from just 58% in 2020). Business owners continue to see email as a lucrative, worthwhile marketing channel — one that should hold a central role in their digital marketing strategy.

If you’re just getting started with e-commerce email marketing, keep reading. Below, we dive into several email marketing best practices to boost e-commerce sales. Plus, we dive into an affordable, easy-to-use email service provider to help you get your first campaign off the ground.

5 E-Commerce Email Marketing Tips to Help Hit Your Annual Sales Goal

Ecommerce email marketing: Gumbamail template

Email marketing automation can win back old customers, push first-time buyers across the finish line, and show gratitude toward your target audience. To help leverage email to boost sales on your e-commerce site, follow these tips:

1. Encourage Potential Customers to Make Their First Purchase

Do you have leads in your email list that have yet to purchase a product or service? Use email marketing to push them over the finish line.

According to SalesCycle, 59% of survey respondents state that marketing emails influenced a purchase decision. You can leverage email marketing campaigns to encourage prospects to make that first purchase through any number of ways, including:

  • Launching a nurture campaign: Let’s face facts — the majority of email subscribers won’t be ready to buy when they first opt in to your list. Instead, prove that you’re a trusted resource in your industry by placing new leads into a welcome email sequence, sending them helpful third-party research, testimonials, and (finally) products they might be interested in.
  • Send a first-time buyer’s promo code: Create a special coupon to encourage prospects to purchase an item from your e-commerce store. Pro tip — be sure to give your coupon an expiration date to create a sense of urgency with new customers.

2. Send Personalized Product Recommendations

One of the best ways to create a steady stream of revenue is by attracting repeat customers. Therefore, once a buyer makes their first purchase, you want to ensure they keep coming back.

Segment your list based on past order history, and develop an e-commerce email marketing campaign based on recommended products. For example, if you own a running store and a new customer buys a pair of shoes, send them recommended products such as shorts, tank tops, or compression socks. Or, if you own a hardware store and a person purchases seedlings in the spring, send them recommended pots, soil, or other must-have products later on in the summer.

Consider implementing the following tactics to increase repeat purchases, thereby scaling the customer lifetime value of your audience:

  • Send an upsell: As part of a buyer’s order confirmation email, send the customer a special promo code for an upsell product. For example, if you own a photography studio and a new subscriber just booked a photoshoot, send them a special offer for five additional prints.
  • Cross-sell with complementary products: A complementary product is one that increases in value based on the purchase of another product. For example, if you own a hair salon and someone books a cut and color, follow up with a promotional email with a CTA (call to action) linking to your top-recommended shampoos for color-treated hair.

3. Express Gratitude Toward Loyal Customers

Keeping your customers happy is imperative to the success of your business. In fact, research shows that the probability of selling to a current customer is 14X higher than selling to a new customer.

To express gratitude to current customers and strengthen retention rates, send out annual promo emails on a special date. These emails should come with a personal message from you, stating that you’ve loved having them as a customer. (Psst! This is a great opportunity to take advantage of merge tags, sending personalized emails addressed to the subscriber’s first name. That way, it reads as a thoughtful message from you.)

Two popular ways to thank your loyal clientele include:

  • Wish customers a happy birthday: On the first of the month, send out a special birthday blast to all customers who have a birthday that month. Give them a special promo code to “treat themselves” on their special day.
  • Celebrate a client’s anniversary: When did a client first make a purchase in your store? Send out a thank-you email one year after that date, thanking them for their business and giving them a special coupon to express your gratitude.

4. Reward Buyers for Leaving a Customer Review

People are more likely to purchase a product based on a recommendation from a friend. Therefore, as part of your customer journey, invite loyal clients to leave you a review on Google, Yelp, or a social media platform. In doing so, you’ll likely see a bump in referrals to your business.

To encourage customers to leave you a review, send them an email offering:

  • A discount toward your online store: Send a transactional email to your client base asking to leave you a review. In exchange, send them a special coupon for 20% off their next purchase.
  • Free products: One way to fuel a new product launch is to transform existing customers into influencers for your company. Offer to send new products to loyal customers if they review the items online or on their respective social media accounts.

5. Increase Conversions Through Abandoned Cart Emails

Want an easy way to increase your conversion rate? Send out cart abandonment emails each time a potential buyer “abandons” a purchase at checkout.

Abandoned cart notifications are triggered emails that fire when a lead adds an item to their shopping cart, but fails to make a purchase. These types of emails typically fire several hours (or 1-2 days) after the customer originally visited your online store. (Note: To use this feature, you’ll need an email marketing service that syncs seamlessly with your e-commerce platform.)

In addition to abandoned cart emails, here are a few ways to leverage email automation to encourage subscribers to make a purchase:

  • Ask questions: Sometimes, we get so caught up in selling that we forget to listen. If a customer abandons a purchase, send a follow-up email asking them if there are any questions you can answer or worries you can extinguish.
  • Offer a free trial: Some users might worry that a product or service won’t address their pain point. Therefore, allow them to try the product for free for a specified period (e.g. one week) to help alleviate any pre-purchase anxiety.

Increase Your E-Commerce Sales With Gumbamail

Gumbamail Gmail

Email marketing is a trusted channel to increase sales within your online store. With email, you can increase brand loyalty, celebrate your customers, and convert first-time buyers. But before you make a sale, you need the right marketing tools.

Gumbamail is the easy-to-use email marketing software that works in conjunction with your existing Gmail account. With Gumbamail, you get access to 800+ email templates, a drag-and-drop email builder to swap out text and visuals, and an advanced metrics dashboard. Plus, Gumbamail comes with a forever-free plan, fitting perfectly into your marketing budget.

Ready to see how Gumbamail can help drive sales on your website? Download the free plugin to get started.