Having doubts about the effectiveness of email marketing as a way to acquire and retain customers? Do you think that the email marketing tool has been replaced?
According to optiminister, 85% of adults and 78% of teenagers in the US use their emails on a regular basis – meaning that no matter who your target segment is, email marketing is a vital and practical tool when it comes to reaching out to customers.
However, it’s worth keeping in mind that most of these users check their emails on their mobiles – this is why you must make sure the mobile version of your email newsletter or email campaign is as well-structured as the desktop version.
Another potential issue you might have in mind is that people in your email database could complain about receiving too many irrelevant emails. Result: the receiver will either stop opening your emails or even unsubscribe. Well, if you avoid sending out random emails, refrain from using spam words and target the right segments, you won’t have to worry about your emails being considered as spam.
In this post, you will find a procedure you can follow in order to optimise your ecommerce email marketing campaigns. Keep in mind that once subscribers mark your unsolicited emails as spam, you will start to get a bad reputation with email filters.
Don’t panic – this doesn’t have to be the case! Find out how to make the best out of email marketing – one of the highest revenue generating channels.
Below, we’ll walk you through a detailed description of the following.
1. How to prepare the email marketing plan
2. What to include in the email
3. How to measure and optimise your email
Avoid Spamming and Sending Random Emails: Process to Design Weekly Ecommerce Email Campaigns
1. How to prepare the email marketing plan
Promotion Campaigns / Email Newsletters:
For starters, you should know that there are two types of emails – Promotion Campaigns and Email Newsletters.
Promotion campaigns are emails that contain a very specific message. They could consist of holiday campaigns (Christmas, Ramadan, Easter and Labor Day for example) or specific celebration campaigns (such as Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day and Teacher’s Day). As well as reflecting special occasions, these emails could highlight a particular offer for your ecommerce store – such as a 15% discount for first-time consumers or a 25% end of season sale.
As for email newsletters, they’re regular emails sent out to acquire new customers or retain existing ones. They could feature best-selling products, customer testimonials or even blog posts (if there are any) and will have a call to action (CTA) button at the end to encourage users to visit your ecommerce store.
It is very important for your email marketing plan to be well-organised. The best way to stay one step ahead is to prepare an email marketing calendar in advance. In that calendar, you should mark dates that are relevant to your online business and your target market before setting the promo campaigns accordingly. As well as this, you’ll need to select the best times to send newsletters to your subscribers.
Email Marketing Sheet:
It is preferable to start by sending out one email per week – then you can do so more regularly if you find it helpful. As mentioned before, it’s very important to be organized in order to keep track of your strategy. That is why you need to create an email marketing sheet. In this sheet, there should be details about the objective of your campaign, the campaign type (acquisition, awareness, retention), the campaign theme (the general message you want your subscribers to get), the campaign mechanism (number of emails and what each email entails), in addition to the campaign duration and most importantly – the targeted segment.
While we’ve stressed the importance of having a structured plan, we cannot deny the fact that the ecommerce world is an unsteady environment. That is why, one must keep an open mind to changes in the strategy if necessary.
According to Wordstream, email campaigns with a clear segmentation have an open rate that is 14.32% higher as well as click-through rates that are 100.95% higher than non-segmented campaigns.
Choosing the right segment for your email, as with any marketing tool, is a key step towards success. It’s even more important in email marketing because, as mentioned in our introduction above, a perfectly well-designed email sent to the wrong subscribers can get you into trouble.
Create an email template:
Create an email template sheet like the one featured below. This sheet allows you to organize your email campaigns, and keep track of them for future reference.
There must be a clear structure, including – but not restricted to – a subject line, a preheader text (the text that is not in bold shown after the subject line), the email banner (the picture just below the logo) with a link to your website, the title of the email, the content of the text, the featured products (with their respective links on your website) and finally the CTA button with its link.
Implementing the email:
The next step is simple: implement the email campaign using an email marketing tool such as MailChimp. Once you enter everything into its corresponding place on the latter tool, all you need to do is choose the segment and test the email.
When sending the test email, take note of how the mobile version looks and adjust as necessary. Also, make sure that all the links and the CTA buttons are working properly – this is easy to miss!
Once everything is set, all you need to do is schedule the email to your optimised delivery day and time. After a while, and after sending many emails and tracking the results, you will be able to optimise the date & time of the email as necessary.
Here’s a tip for you: According to many email marketing studies, Tuesday is the best day of the week to send an email.
It’s very important to avoid spam in your subject line. In order to do this, refrain from using questions, multiple types of punctuation, all-capital letters and words associated with spam. For more information on spam words, check out Hubspot’s list of spam trigger words. However, remember that passing the spam test is not enough! You have to make the subject line attractive enough for the subscriber to want to open the email in the first place. It should also be relevant to the content of the email.
Here’s a tip for you. According to a report by Experian, 56% of brands using emojis in their subject lines had a higher open rate.
The preheader text is a short text that follows the subject line. It consists of a summary of the email material.
It is preferable for the general theme of the email to be aligned with that of the website. That includes the layout, the colors and the tone of voice.
Don’t forget to include the logo of your eBusiness at the top!
An email banner is the first image you include.
It is highly recommended to create a different email banner for each email campaign. It should be something related to the content of the email, yet still conveying the general message of your company.
The title of the email should be something simple, yet appealing to the segment you’re targeting.
The length, the tone and the structure of your text should vary based on the product sold, the message you want to convey and the segment you’re conveying your message to.
Product images, customer testimonials, promo codes:
Depending on the structure of your campaign, you could include product images accompanied by prices and/or customer testimonials and/or promo codes and/or blog posts.
Don’t overcrowd your email with too much content – just focus on your objective.
For instance: if your objective is acquisition, then include product images and prices. If you want to focus on awareness and building trust, then opt for blog posts and customer testimonials.
In your email, include at least one CTA button that urges the subscriber to visit the desired page of the website.
Some examples include: Shop Now, Sign Up Now, Invite Friend and See More Products.
Include as many links as you can to increase the traffic to the website. Add links to the email banners, product images and CTA buttons.
Include links to your social media pages at the end of your email, and remember to put any other contact information you have there too.
It is no secret that the ecommerce market is growing exponentially – and by the minute. This makes it harder and harder to stand out in a highly competitive environment. This calls for constant evaluation of every single aspect in your marketing strategy – more specifically, email marketing – because there’s always room for improvement.
Keep this in mind: The more data you collect, the more accurate your assumptions and forecasts will be.
The KPIs you could use in order to evaluate your email’s performance are the following:
Open rate: The number of people who opened the email
Click rate: The number of clicks on a link inputted in the email
Number of people who are unsubscribed: The people who asked to be unsubscribed
Number of bounces: The people who didn’t get the email
Monitor & adjust:
Once you have these numbers, try to find the difference between the emails that are performing well and the ones that are not doing as well. It could be the timing, the content, the subject line or even a lack of images.
By trying different combinations over time, you will learn to optimise.
However, you should never stop monitoring your changes and adjusting accordingly!
Here’s a sample email report that you can find in EmailPulse:
In conclusion, the email marketing channel is an indispensable channel to convert customers. Even if the conversion is not happening directly through the email, the email marketing channel is supporting other channels and gaining the trust of the subscribers to convert them later.
Good things take time – building, implementing and optimising your email marketing strategy from the very beginning until the end is not straight forward, and also takes time, a specific skill set and expertise.
Well, what if we told you that we have a shortcut for you?
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