Though it may get less attention these days, email marketing is still a very useful tool for ecommerce brands. In fact, 61 percent of people say they like receiving weekly promotional emails. The statistics on the effectiveness of email marketing is also enticing, with consumers who are marketed through email spending on average 138 percent more than those who aren’t, and conversion rates being 3 times higher than social media!
Before you rush off to start your next email campaign, there is more you need to know. While email marketing can be extremely effective, if not done correctly it can be an easy way to waste time and money. There are two general ways you can go about email marketing, and this involves whether you send out general messages, or if you segment your audience and marketing material.
Email segmentation is the act of sending out tailored messages to specific sets of people. Once you identify these groups, you can target them directly by sending emails tailored to what they see as relevant. These segmented emails on average have a 14.4 percent higher open rate than non-segmented messages.
Once you start practicing email segmentation you will see not only an increase in your email open rate, but also in your revenue and customer retention rates. If you still aren’t convinced, lets discuss all of the various benefits of email segmentation.
Boost customer loyalty
Loyal customers are a vital part of any business. These consumers not only purchase your products, but also encourage their friends and family to do so. They tend to spend more money on each purchase, on average 67 percent more than a new customer. Retaining your customers and turning them into loyal ones is a very important process.
Email segmentation is frequently used to target loyal customers, helping to further that bond. By personalizing your emails, you are guaranteed better results. Over 40 percent of consumers admit to buying more from brands that send personalized emails.
You may target loyal customers based on their purchasing history, as well as how frequently they engage with your brand. Another segmentation possibility based on loyalty is in conjunction with your rewards program. If you run a rewards program, be sure to target those individuals who sign up. Send them emails that you don’t send to anyone else. This helps make the customer feel special, another way to help boost loyalty. Send exclusive content updates and deals to your rewards members, reminding them that they are the only ones with access.
Ulta does a great job with their rewards program, and that includes their email segmentation. While they also have physical store locations, you can still learn a lot from them in terms of rewards programs. As an ecommerce brand, you can and should run a rewards program, making sure to email those members directly.
Understand your audience better
Understanding who your target audience is is important for a variety of reasons. While you gather important demographics information for other marketing purposes, there is more you should do for your email campaigns. Even though your brand is specific to one industry, there are still various reasons why people might find themselves purchasing within that industry. By segmenting your campaigns based on these reasons, your customers will find your emails much more relevant.
For example, say your brand is in the sports industry. You likely get customers who play on official sports teams, and customers who simply play for fun. This can be an important distinction when creating an email campaign. Serious athletes will be receptive to email messages targeted at staying fit and being competitive. For customers who are looking for something fun to do, a more playful campaign might be more effective.
The first step to understanding your audience is to understand your brand and your industry. Determine all of the reasons a person might shop at your store, and craft email campaigns based on those reasons. In order to determine who fits into which category, consider sending out a short survey once a customer makes a purchase. Between analyzing what a customer purchases in addition to the info from the survey, you can start smartly grouping your customers into the right categories.
Finally, no marketing strategy is effective if it doesn’t result in increased revenue. You’ve already seen the general email stats on increased conversion rates, the increased amount of money a customer targeted through email will spend, how much more money a loyal customer will spend than a new one, and the stats on how much more effective segmented campaigns are than general ones. That info alone should convince you that email is still well worth your time and resources, but there is more you can do to boost revenue with segmented campaigns by way of triggered emails.
Triggered emails are an important part of email segmentation. These emails are sent, or are “triggered,” as a result of a specific customer performing a certain action on your website. For example, they may put an item into their shopping cart and not check out. Or, they may open your emails but never visit your website or make a purchase. These customers are interacting with your brand in some way, but aren’t following through and making a purchase. With a targeted email, you can remind them of the items in their cart (we wrote an entire article on abandoned cart emails here), or offer a small incentive to try and encourage those users to stop looking at your products, and start buying.
What’s great about these emails is that they are highly personalized (they are sent to one person, not a group), but are also automated. The personalized email will make the consumer feel special, but doesn’t take a lot of time on your end.
Priceline, for example, sends emails to customers once they return from a trip they booked via the Priceline website. The email welcomes the customer home, and offers a discount code to use on their next trip. The email is highly personal, relevant, and useful. Emails of this nature are sure to boost customer loyalty, customer retention, and revenue.