Essential Email Marketing Campaigns For Ecommerce

Email Marketing

If you run an ecommerce store you probably face these problems everyday:

  • How to drive traffic to your store
  • How to boost your ecommerce site’s revenue

With a variety of hosting services and ecommerce platforms to choose from, opening up an ecommerce store does not look too difficult these days. However, unless your product is extremely unique, you need to take into account the tough competition you will encounter on the global internet scene. Using digital ads, social media and other promotions to stand out can come with a huge cost and there’s still no guarantee that customers will respond and engage with your message.

The time of traditional marketing is long gone. One of the keys to online success lies in marketing activities that bring visitors in, rather than getting the attention of prospects by disrupting their internet searches. Crafting such a customer-centric approach is made easier by making email marketing part of your marketing strategy.



Graphic: Email is a part of inbound marketing strategy which attracts user and drives conversion

In this post, I’m going to explain why email marketing is an effective channel of acquiring new customers in ecommerce. Then I will take a look at the types of campaigns that you can implement in your strategy to significantly boost your ecommerce results.

Why email is number one in ecommerce

According to Custora, email marketing accounts for approximately 7% of all ecommerce sales, far ahead of social media and banner advertising.


Graphic: Customers acquisitions via different channels

Awareness of just about anything can spread quickly through email, because it provides many opportunities for unique ways to promote products and brands. A modern approach to traditional email can drive the growth of your e-store by reaching customers in a place they visit every day, their inboxes.

When it comes to conversions and sales, email is still the most effective tactic and should not be overlooked:

  • Email delivers an ROI of around 39:1 (Direct Marketing Association)
  • Consumers who get newsletters spend 138% more than those who don’t (Convince&Convert)
  • Email marketing is 40 times more effective in customer acquisition than social media (McKinsey)

Emails focused on useful, relevant content can build trust with your site’s visitors and help them become more prepared to buy. In order not to miss out on the opportunities email marketing presents, take a look at some examples of campaigns that every ecommerce business can benefit from.

Essential email marketing campaigns for ecommerce

Welcome me and I will stay

New additions to your mailing list are potential customers and your growth depends on them. The “Tell me & I’ll forget, remind me & I’ll remember, welcome me & I’ll stay” rule applies here. Use a welcoming message to make a good first impression and show subscribers that you appreciate their interest.

Take a look at Zalando email design. The email includes a strong CTA with a discount offer, which is a great way to say thank you for joining an email list and prompt purchase.


Show off your expertise

Email helps you build and maintain a good relationship with your clients and prospects. In order to do so you cannot just overload your subscribers with sales pitches. Make the most of the fact that they signed up to your mailing list and gave you permission to stay in touch. Impress them and earn their trust with your knowledge and expertise.

Always think about how you can offer your customers insights about your brand, creative solutions, ideas and inspiration. Make sure that your voice really shines through in all of your email communication. A great example of such content is an email from Net-a-Porter..



Make it all about them

Email personalization can keep customers hooked around your brand. It’s always a nice touch when you walk into your local shop an the owner greets you by name and recommends things you might like. Why not expect the same on the internet? Let your subscribers know that you care about them and you know their needs.

Click To Tweet: 75% of consumers prefer it when brands personalize messaging and offers

Source: Aberdeen Group

With email you can deliver personalized shopping experiences. Take a look at Uncommon Goods email design. In this case a customer visited their ecommerce website but didn’t purchase anything. The company used this information to send out a list of interesting items to choose from in a newsletter.


Win them back

70% of companies say it’s cheaper to retain a customer than to acquire a new one (Econsultancy Cross-Channel Marketing Report 2014). You can find inactive segments from your mailing list by using a method called RFM analysis. This way you will create groups according to when subscribers made their last purchase, how frequently they make purchases and how much they spend. After recognizing the inactive customers prepare a one-time juicy deal to encourage them to start buying again.


Another thing you can do is write a plain text email, which helps to humanize your message. Sometimes offering help and your service is enough to remind customers about your brand. Remember that the number one thing consumers want from brands is honesty.


People who celebrate together, stay together!

What’s the one thing people love the most? Their birthdays! Remember this special moment and engage personally with your customers on their big day. Most of them might be in a mood to treat themselves on their birthday with a present.

Craft an automated email triggered by a certain date. You can split your birthday suprise into two messages. One sent few days in advance with an incentive to craft a birthday wish list. Second one on the actual day of birth, with a special offer and a reason to celebrate.


Abandoned cart rescue email

How often do you have customers who have added products to their cart but failed to check out? The online shopping cart abandonment rate worldwide from 2006 to 2015 was 68.53 percent! That’s a lot! Use email and send a friendly reminder with compelling copy so your recipient can easily get back to the cart and complete the purchase.

With abandoned cart emails you have to be quick and hit the subscriber’s inbox as soon as possible. You should automate a series of triggered emails for abandoned carts, a few reminders spread over several days helps to increase conversion rates.

abandoned cart

A pro tip here is to create a level of urgency. Try encouraging your customers to purchase by guaranteeing that you’ll hold their items for a definite but limited time.


Hello again! Back in stock!

Don’t lose customers who go shopping elsewhere if products in your store are out of stock. You can encourage them to wait and get back to you when the item they were looking for is back. Just place a visible link next to your product allowing customers to be notified via email when an item is back in stock.  

Birkenstock Central was able to achieve a 22.45% average conversion rate using back-in-stock emails.


Upselling email and related products

Upselling occurs when you persuade a customer to buy a more expensive item or upgrade a product or service to make the sale more profitable. Up-selling is all about increasing revenue. Shopping sprees and holiday seasons are a great time to focus on it. Shoppers on the whole spend then more than they intended to.

Another good idea is to send an offer with related products soon after the purchase, when a customer is still in a buying frame of mind.


Thank you for your order

As Marketing Metrics found, “businesses have a 60 to 70% chance of selling to an existing customer while the probability of selling to a new prospect is only 5% to 20%.” Use your order confirmation email to upsell and leverage sales.

Customers are engaging with transactional emails. Such messages have higher OR’s and CTR’s than regular messages. You have to think of them as another opportunity to show the personality of your brand and make it a good experience for customers.

According to anti-spam laws, transactional emails should remain transactional. However if you follow the 80/20 rule where 80% of the email’s content is transactional, and 20% promotional – you will benefit from the high performance of email.


Final thoughts

The use of email marketing in ecommerce is a great way to stay in touch with your customers and build your brand image. The personalised nature of email makes it possible to maintain a profitable long term relationship with customers.

Don’t be afraid to surprise your subscribers! Be relevant and you’ll have a strategy that can beat the competition every time!

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