Congratulations. You’ve been landing sales for your business and now have the luxury of figuring out how to increase repeat customer purchases.
Not only is it more likely to get previous customers to purchase again than new customers, the strategies utilized are significantly more cost-effective. Upward of 80% of eCommerce marketing budgets are devoted to acquisition, putting retention on the backburner. However, 40% of eCommerce revenue comes from only 8% of its customers.
Since the heavy lifting of making your customers aware of your brand and clicking on your site, whether through SEO or alternative means, has been already done, email marketing provides a means of establishing a long-term relationship and driving repeat business.
Send Consistent Newsletters
Email marketing consistently beats out organic and social for repeat purchases, across the board, by anywhere between 1%-3.5%.
When you collect a customer’s email, you have the commitment of providing consistent and valuable information. Each lackluster email runs the risk of your customers hitting the unsubscribe button faster than they signed up, and they will do so to protect the limited space of their email inbox.
The primary focus of your newsletters shouldn’t be in pushing products immediately, it should be in providing your email list with engaging content that keeps them interested in your brand. It is no simple feat to create a high-quality newsletter that comes out at regular intervals, but with some forward thinking and creativity, it is very manageable.
Optimize Your Transactional Emails
Your transactional emails (system-triggered emails such as order and shipping confirmation) are often the first emails your customers see from you after their purchase. Put yourself in the shoes of your customer: They just purchased an item and want to see an order confirmation and shipping information, first and foremost.
It is easy to get excited and load your transactional emails with social links, related products, and links to on-site content, but always remember that recipients primarily want to see the hard information pertaining to their order. When in doubt, err on the side of clarity. By setting the tone of a clean, minimalist email list, customers will be more likely to willingly subscribe and stay subscribed to consistent email updates from you.
These emails should also be searchable, in the sense that users can find the information in their cluttered inbox with certain keywords. This improvement to the customer experience helps recipients find necessary information like an order number if it needs to be referenced at a point in the future.
Add Strategic Calls to Action
Since transactional emails are usually the only emails that customers generally are expecting for critical information, they have 8x as many opens and clicks than any other email type. From the sheer volume of open rates, they also have the ability to generate 6x more revenue than any other email type.
While it’s imperative the critical information is front and center in these emails, the opportunity to encourage a purchase in the future cannot be overlooked. A standard issue transactional email is usually something similar to an unbranded plain text email. Companies that put in the effort to ensure that the emails are branded prevent the buyer’s journey from becoming disjointed once they receive an email. By keeping emails on brand, customers will be more likely to respond to engaging CTAs, including offers, similar items, and referral programs.
Shopping Cart Abandonment
The internet can be a distracting place, and, as such, some visitors tend to shop around for products they like, only to shift over to another tab and leave an incomplete purchase. Inactivity emails sent to visitors that placed items from your shop in their cart are a great way to push a sale that almost was.
Cart abandonment emails are a great way to drive revenue from repeat customers. Since their information is already on the site, sending a kind reminder that the transaction can be completed in a few clicks simplifies the entire process. In order to optimize these emails, your email must be timely (within 24 hours), include a clear CTA, and include an incentive like 10% off their next purchase or free shipping.
Customer retention is a digital marketing aspect that really allows email marketing to shine. Since these visitors have already interacted with your brand and have willingly given you their information, you are able to keep a conversation going with them. This conversation can not only spur future purchases but also drive referrals to new customers and collect feedback.