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These days, marketers put a lot of emphasis on chatbots, Instagram influencers, and other new opportunities to reach their customers. However, some of these more trendy communication methods shouldn’t distract you from one of the most traditional (and effective!) messaging channels: email. 

More than half of marketers say that email is their biggest source of ROI. In fact, email marketing drives $44 for every $1 spent, which is an astounding 4,400% ROI, making it one of the most effective options available for today’s marketing teams.

But with consumers receiving close to a hundred emails in their inboxes every day, how can marketing teams cut through the noise? Modern marketing emails must be able to provide customer value, offer responsive design, and above all else, inspire action.

Need a bit of inspiration for your next marketing campaign? Here are three of today’s e-commerce brands that are crushing their email campaigns.

The Skimm 

If anyone knows anything about email, it’s The Skimm. In fact, they crafted their entire business around it. The Skimm’s daily newsletter, which offers a digest of news stories, features a clean design and short, witty paragraphs.

But newsletters aren’t The Skimm’s only strength when it comes to email. Check out the email below. 

E-commerce email marketing campaign example by theSkimm celebrating a user's subscriber anniversary


Emails triggered by special occasions, like birthdays and anniversaries, are obviously fun for the subscriber to receive. Who doesn’t love a celebration? In particular, anniversary emails don’t require the subscriber to provide any additional personal information. However, this email works well for a few purposes. 

Notice the middle of the email where the folks at The Skimm asks if the subscriber would like to become a “Skimm’bassador,” the brand’s take on an ambassador. Naturally, Skimm’bassador status requires her to encourage 10 friends to sign up for daily newsletters. 

Recognizing subscriber milestones is a great opportunity to boost email engagement, as this is when your audience feels most loyal to your brand and its initiatives. In this scenario, engagement not only increases brand loyalty for a single customer, but it also increases total users. Be sure to tailor your email engagement to your unique goals, whether it be product sales, video views, or even article shares. 

Warby Parker 

Let’s set the scene on this one: 

E-commerce email from Warby Parker


The email’s subject line reads, “Uh-oh, your prescription is expiring.” This reminds the reader that it’s about time to schedule an appointment with the optometrist.

And what goes better with a new prescription than a new pair of glasses? When it’s time to pick out a new pair, you’ll likely remember your dear friends at Warby Parker who were so helpful in reminding you to stay on top of your proper eye care. 

Suffice it to say we’re not all the greatest at remembering to schedule doctors’ appointments — and Warby Parker recognizes this in theiremail marketing strategy.

They provide value to their customers by offering insight into key events that might otherwise have been forgotten. Appointment reminders aren’t in Warby Parker’s job description, but selling glasses is. 

Going above and beyond to demonstrate that they’re looking out for their customers translates to more sales in the long run. How can you provide additional services to your customers? Be sure to integrate this value in your next email marketing initiative.

Abercrombie + Fitch 

Let’s face it: email subject lines are tricky. People judge an email by its subject line. They make quick decisions whether or not toopen, read, and clickan email based on a fleeting glance at the subject line. 

In order to capture a reader’s attention, subject lines today must be short, informative and unique — talk about a creative writing trifecta.

Many e-commerce brands have attempted to craft a perfect email subject line that quickly piques a reader’s interest, but one company who does this really well is Abercrombie + Fitch. 

Abercrombie + Fitch uses a number of crafty subject lines that lead the reader to think it’s regarding a personal matter. They use the type of subject lines you might see from a friend or personal contact. This strategy sparks curiosity and encourages the reader to open the email.

Check out the examples below:

E-commerce email subject lines from Abercrombie & Fitch


Upon opening the email, you’ll see that you hadn’t actually forgotten to confirm anything. But, with a big sale at your fingertips, you’re more likely to shop than if you never opened the email at all.

These are just a few of our favorite email techniques from e-commerce brands. However, if you learn anything from these specific cases, remember that it often pays off tobe creative in your email marketing strategy. Try thinking outside the box on email best practices — it will likely pay off!

Marie Johnson is a contributor to Enlightened Digital, UX Designer and technology writer from New York City. If she’s not writing her latest blog post in her kitchen, you’ll likely find her strolling through Central Park, cappuccino in hand.

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