Inboxes are becoming outrageously crowded, and even more difficult to stay in. With Google’s app Inbox that automatically groups promotions and deals into separated sections, and new updates from Apple’s iOS that allows users to unsubscribe at the top of every email, people are leaving lists quicker than Kevin Durant left the Thunder.
Creating emails that are targeted, buzz-worthy, and data and sales driven must be at the top of any eCommerce company’s priority list, alongside SEO, ads and other tactics. The following five eCommerce email tips are tested, proven and sure to increase not only your click-through rates, but more importantly your weekly sales numbers.
1. Getting the Right Emails
This is the first step because if you screw this up, none of the other tips will be relevant. Having the wrong type of people in your email list is like having toothpaste but no toothbrush, brushing your teeth with your finger is just embarrassing. Every contact should be as close to your ideal buyer persona as possible. Growing your list should be methodical and premeditated, with each newsletter opt-in form being placed for the conversion of the right consumer. We recommend on blog pages, exit intent pop-ups, and most importantly during the checkout process (they already bought once, why wouldn’t they in the future?).
Also, please don’t buy lists. Buying lists is what will turn email marketing into just another dying mass media advertising medium. People can’t stand commercials because they aren’t relevant to them! The same goes for email. If you spam out your new baby carriers to a 19-year-old college dude, what have you accomplished? Many email platforms will blacklist you if you use purchased lists. Like that gas station hot dog, is it worth it?
2. Simple and Clear Subject Lines
Another important point, putting your subject line in ALL CAPS is not the way to get your email read. Most people immediately delete any email with an all caps subject line or more than two exclamation points. Secondly, make sure your subject line is simple and relevant. If the email is about a new promotion for 25% off, include that. Same goes for new products, store openings, etc. Subject lines should literally lead the consumer to digest the larger message within the email. Clickbait tactics may get you opens, but then what?
Invoking emotion in subject lines is extremely crucial to getting one more open. Jack Threads does a great job of knowing their target market and tailoring their subject lines accordingly. In their case, saying my mom wants me to open this email is relevant and humorous. Regardless of your buyer persona, find their pain points and incorporate that wording into your subject lines.
3. A Picture is Worth 1,000 Words
If you don’t have high-quality images of your product, stop. Just stop reading this post and take whatever measures are necessary to obtain high-quality product images. That investment will double itself in the long run. Once you have high-quality images, use them in your emails. If you get an email open, it is vital you keep that user engaged with eye-catching imagery. Only 10% of information can be recalled after 3 days in people’s brains, but if you couple that info with imagery the retention rate skyrockets to 65%.
Images that show your product in use have higher potential for resonating with your audience. Selling dresses? It better be on a model. Baby monitors? Show a mom using it. Hunting gear? That camo jacket must be on someone ready for the deer hunt. If someone can envision themselves using your product, they will have a higher chance of making a purchase. Portraying your product being used makes that purchase one step closer. Think infomercials but without the cheesy taglines and distressed actors.
4. One Purpose To Rule Them All
Have you seen an email like the following? The sender wants you to: sign up for a VIP club and read a new blog and refer a friend and watch their new YouTube video and tell you about a new store opening and… well… if you have time (or got that far) to actually make a purchase. It’s comical. Each email should have a specific purpose, idea and call to action. When your wife asks you to do nine different things, how many do you accomplish? Compare that with being asked to just fix the leaky faucet. You get the idea.
A general best practice is to have one, yes, just one call to action or purpose per email. If you want an email to drive more sales of men’s red swim trunks, why would you include information about mesh trucker hats as well? Each image, call to action and the supporting text (subject line included) should focus on selling men’s red swim trunks. Specific messaging gets specific results.
5. Don’t Go Overkill
You should only send emails as often as they fulfill your purpose. That can look vastly different from one store to another. A mom and pop shop selling homemade aprons with a list of only 500 people wouldn’t have the same email cadence as Nordstrom with a list larger than the state of Texas. Be sure that, as mentioned above, each email has a measurable purpose so you can analyze which emails work best and when.
Another practice that works amazingly is to explicitly mention how often someone will receive emails when they opt-in. Tell them it will be once a week, and then stick to it. A top-noted factor in retaining clients in the eCommerce world is building trust with each consumer. So don’t overuse the permission they have granted you as a business, their email address.