19 Email Marketing Mistakes To Avoid Making in 2019

[ad_1]

Email marketing is a powerful marketing tool but only if you are doing it right. Unfortunately, many brands these days make email marketing mistakes which cost them opens and conversions. It isn’t rare that for some brands things have been going well until at some point some they report a rise of the unsubscriptions.

Well, even if you thought you’ve figured out the email marketing game, circumstances are changing. At some point, you may not realize that you have started making email marketing mistakes, whether small or big. Today, we’ve prepared a list of 19 common email marketing mistakes that may negatively impact your opens and conversions. Let’s begin.

1. Not abiding by the GDPR regulation

As of May 2018, all companies operating in the EU as well as companies outside the EU which operate on the EU market, have to abide by a set of rules regarding collecting, storing and using data and personal information of users and clients. Find more information about GDPR.

2. Skipping the proper preparation

The proper preparation for what awaits you and your future email audience is the essential first step that you have to take. First things first, ask yourself a few vital questions before moving on.

  • Can you really benefit from email marketing?
  • How exactly will you engage your email list?
  • What type of content can you create?
  • How often?

Making a plan and deciding on the details of your email marketing strategy will help you clear up your vision, create focused content, and ultimately, reach your goals.

3. Not setting the right expectations

Then, you need to prepare your email recipients for what to expect from you. This means they need to know, when subscribing, how often you will they receive emails from you and what type of content it is going to be. Here is an example by Moz Blog.

Moz-subscribe-form

4. Not setting goals for each campaign

Sure, you must have one general goal that you want to achieve via email marketing. But! With each email newsletter or email campaign you create, you must set a specific goal for this email campaign. What would you want your recipients to learn? What do you want them to do afterwards? Setting a specific goal for each specific campaign will boost your success significantly.

5. Skipping the email list segmentation

Sending a general email campaign to your whole email list can sometimes be justified but doing it every time may lower your open and conversion rates. This is because people in your email list are different and they would love to have more personalized experience with your brand.

How to achieve that? Well, the first step is segmenting. Now, you can segment your email list by gender, interest, purchase patterns, stages of the sales cycle, etc. Learn more about Email List Segmentation Best Practices

6. Not sending relevant content

After you’ve segmented your email list, don’t keep sending one general email newsletter to all. Send relevant content to the different groups of people you’ve created. For example, if you are selling clothes, create one campaign for men’s clothes to send to the male subscribers, and one for the women’s clothes to send to the female subscribers. The examples are many but the idea is: You email becomes more relevant and personalized. As a result, the conversion rate will grow.

Here is an example for sending relevant content by Shinola, a brand for men’s and women’s accessories. In this campaign, they promoted men’s new accessories which they sent to their male subscribers.

shinola-our-first-automatic-timepiece

7. Annoying your recipients with too many emails

Even if the person is interested in receiving content from you, flooding them with emails is absolutely a no-go. From our experience, some brands send an email each day, and others send even more frequently. In such cases, you will most likely receive an unsubscribe rather than a click.

8. Writing poor subject lines

The subject line is a major factor when it comes to generating high open rates. Depending on how you’ve written the subject line, it will either catch the recipient’s attention or be completely ignored. Of course, you don’t want the latter to happen.

Unfortunately, there isn’t a recipe that works for every brand. But there are a few rules that you can and should follow.

  • Don’t mislead the viewer. This means all you say in the subject line should be true.
  • Don’t say it all. Just provoke the curiosity of the recipient, so they are motivated to click and see your message.
  • Put your keywords in the beginning. Since a lot of recipients will read their email on mobile devices, have in mind that the subject lines will be cropped.

9. Neglecting the preheader text

The preheader text is the text that is displayed right next to the subject line. Its purpose is to give more information about the email content and convince the user to click and see what’s inside.

preheader text preview

If you don’t fill out this field with valuable information, the email service provider will display the beginning of your email. And it won’t be very helpful sometimes, e.g. “View this email on the web”.

10. Sending a non-responsive email design

When it comes to reading emails on mobile devices, it’s an absolute must that your email design is responsive. Either this or a mobile version of the email design will ensure that all your mobile readers will see it in the best possible way.

11. Not branding the email design

If you are using a pre-made email template, you should most definitely brand it with your logo. If possible, you should even change the template’s colors to be consistent with your overall brand identity. A simple way to brand your email is to place your logo in the upper part of the email design. Here is an example by Shopify.

welcome-to-shopify-we-have-special-features-for-wordpress-users

12. Too much going on in your email

Remember the goal we talked about? Without a goal, you might get you carried away in including all kind of information, relevant or irrelevant to your recipients. In result, they may prefer to close the email rather than click on anything inside.

So, keep your email newsletter focused. Remember your goal and leave out everything that would distract the viewer.

13. Not leading the viewer’s eyes

With every email design you send, you need to have a hierarchy that’s clear for the viewer. Headings, subheadings, and paragraphs help you establish a hierarchy. They also make your content scannable, so the recipient can sift out the information and read only the pieces that catch their interest.

Here is a great example by Nokia of how to make your content scannable and lead the viewers’ eyes.

mother-s-day-offer-free-luxury-wristband-with-any-watch-purchase

14. The email design lacking consistency with the landing page

When creating email marketing campaigns, marketers neglect the landing page very often. Well, this clearly is a mistake because after all, this is the destination you want the recipient to arrive to.

Make the design of the landing page consistent with the email design. The landing page should feel like a natural extension to the email.  This way, the person won’t feel like they’ve landed on the wrong page.

15. Forgetting about the alt text for images

For one reason or another, the email service provider may not display your images. Or the user might have turned them off. Either way, you should most certainly include alt tags for your images, especially if they are linked. Make the alt text meaningful, so a user can decide if they want to click, even if they are not seeing the image.

16. Not using anchor text for links

Avoid pasting plain URLs in your content. Use anchor texts that are meaningful and feel like a natural part of the text. So, instead of using “Click here”, say “Browse our new collection” or “Learn more”, or “Download this freebie”, etc. Here is an example by Brandless – the anchor text “unboxing videos”.

brandless-feeling-the-love

17. Unclear call-to-action copy

We are not only talking about the text you put on the buttons but the text right before that, as well. A call-to-action button copy is effective only if it’s harmonized with the copy of the headings and the paragraphs. Here are the steps:

  • Grab the attention with the headings’ copy.
  • Increase the interest with the paragraphs’ copy.
  • Inspire action with the buttons’ copy.

And here is a great example by Apple of how to implement these 3 steps into your email campaign.

apple-buy-an-eligible-mac

18. Not filling the email footer with the right information

Including unnecessary or unuseful information in the email footer is as bad as not including any information at all. Here is what you should put in the email footer:

  • An Unsubscribe option that doesn’t require logging in.
  • Social media buttons that make it easy for recipients to follow you on social media.
  • A link to your privacy policy which is in compliance with the GDPR regulation.
  • Other disclaimers if necessary, e.g. when you are promoting a contest.

19. Not doing A/B testing

Email marketing isn’t rocket science but it isn’t so easy to figure it out from the beginning, as well. It takes time to understand what kind of content appeals to your recipients the most. At what days of the week and what times of the day you generate the highest conversion and open rates. You will establish all of these factors by using A/B testing. Learn more about How A/B Testing Improves Your Email Marketing.

To wrap up,

Email marketing mistakes are common. Almost every brand has made at least a few of them in while learning and experimenting what works and what doesn’t. We hope we’ve been helpful with these 19 email marketing mistakes that you will most certainly want to avoid making in 2019. If you’ve encountered other email marketing mistakes throughout the years, we’ll be more than happy to hear about them in the comments below.

Interested in 80+ FREE MailChimp Templates to Kick-Start Your Email Marketing?

[ad_2]

7 Brands Using GIF Emails to Spice Up Their Email Marketing

[ad_1]

Using GIFs in email isn’t anything new in 2018 but still, not many brands are leveraging the power of motion in their email marketing campaigns. Creating GIF emails requires a little bit more time and effort than making a static email marketing template but the effort definitely pays off. Motion in email marketing templates not only catches the attention but it opens a whole new field of opportunities to provoke the curiosity of your audience in new, exciting ways.

Today we will show you a few brands which definitely know how to spice up their email marketing campaigns by using GIFs. Hopefully, we will inspire you to test out this strategy for your next email campaign. By using A/B testing, send an animated GIF email to half of your audience, and a static version of the same email to the other half. You may be completely blown away by the results!

Without wasting any more time, let’s jump to some of the most famous brands using GIFs in emails. Enjoy!

1. Moo

Moo is a print and design company, one of the brands that spice up their email marketing campaigns with GIF emails. Here are a couple of examples that are fun and engaging.

While watermelons are not directly related to print and design, the following email template is very fun and provoking curiosity. The email comes with a subject line “Something sweet for you” and is definitely targeted to an audience who is familiar with the brand very well.

moo email gif example

Here is an example of an email GIF which doesn’t take much time to be created but still manages to impress the recipient. Moo used a mockup of a few printed cards and simply switched a few different sets of looks.

2. Loft

Honestly, the fashion brand Loft has so many wonderful GIF email examples that we definitely had a hard time choosing which ones to include Their signature style is sending short email templates with one clearly focused message.

Look at this sweet email template of a melting ice-cream on a stick. It perfectly supports the message of “the hottest sale”!

Loft GIF email example

Blinking has always been drawing the attention. For this reason, marketers use it in their email campaigns. This one by Loft doesn’t represent blinking exactly but it creates a similar effect by “pressing” each of the letters quickly.

Loft GIF email example

Underlining is often used to highlight important parts of the text. Underlined words naturally draw the eye and Loft knows it. This email template bet on this technique to prompt recipients to click through.

Loft GIF email example

3. Ann Taylor

Ann Taylor is another brand from the fashion industry which uses GIF emails to spice up their email marketing campaigns. The following GIF email example is a quite cute snowflake made into a ticking clock. The brand has acquired the same “short email” strategy as Loft to make subscribers convert. Using GIF, in this case, increases the urgency which the clock creates.

Ann Taylor GIF email example

An animated hourglass or a sand clock in your email template is another idea to boost the urgency factor in your GIF email. Here is how Ann Taylor leveraged this tactic.

Ann Taylor GIF email example

GIFs in email are quite useful in creating a path for the eyes to follow. Here is a great example for this trick. Ann Taylor sent an email template for September, whose letter disappear one by one leading the eye towards the call-to-action button.

Ann Taylor GIF email example

4. J.Crew

J.Crew is a retail brand which sends brilliant GIF emails impressing all of their subscribers. A cute unfolding origami flower reveals a special offer which J.Crew has for their recipients – 30% off which is also written in their animated email template copy but hey, the GIF definitely nails the attention, doesn’t it?

JCrew GIF email example

Gifts on a moving carousel convey the feeling of packages which are on their way to you, thus making the recipient feel they already own the products. With such a strategy, the user becomes way more inclined to order, indeed.

JCrew GIF email example

Here is an example of a GIF email which we’ve seen many brands use – a product finishing. Such an animated image in an email template conveys the feeling that the offer will also finish soon.

JCrew GIF email example

5. Artifact Uprising

Birthdays are the perfect occasion to remind all of your subscribers about your brand and make them a part of the birthday participation. If you doing by using a GIF in email, you will catch their attention even more successfully! Here are two awesome birthday email examples by Artifact Uprising who not only sent emails to celebrate their birthday but to promote their brand with a special sale offer.

artifact uprising GIF email birthday

artifact uprising GIF email birthday

6. Banana Republic

Banana Republic is among the fashion brands which love sending GIF emails to their subscribers. The brand’s marketers certainly know how to leverage the power of motion. Not all animated email templates of Banana Republic show clothing but all of them manage to provoke curiosity.

Here is one that we completely love. Maybe because it shows the word “love” switching the “o” with a heart and a few clothing products, thus showing diversity in a very clever way.

banana republic GIF email example

Fashion brands should always stay on the cutting edge of design trends. Just when holographic designs were in their peak, Banana Republic sent this simple GIF email template with a very attractive animated holographic background.

banana republic GIF email example

Fashion brands who offer clothing for men and women should certainly have a strategy of how to target their audience of subscribers. One way is to segment your audience by gender. Another way is… well, switching a girl model with a guy model in a smart GIF email.

banana republic GIF email example

Wordplay always grasps the attention and impresses with cleverness. Here is a cool example of such an email which says “Pine over this offer” and depicts pine branches and pine needles falling in the background.

banana republic GIF email example

7. Nasty Gal

Nasty Gal is one of the brands using GIF in email very successfully. Here is an email campaign which almost mesmerizes with its animated background showing a “30%” sale.

nasty gal GIF email example

A GIF inside an email doesn’t have to be very obvious and intrusive in order to make an impact. In the following animated email template by Nasty Gal, just the middle block is animated with the model changing positions.

nasty gal GIF email example

We all know that visuals in email templates draw the eye. But even if your email is based on plain text, you can spice it up by using a GIF animation, just like in the following example.

nasty gal GIF email example

In conclusion,

We must all agree that GIF emails look great in the recipient’s inbox and can certainly motivate them to convert if done right. If you still haven’t tried this technique for your own email marketing templates, now might be the perfect time to do it.

We hope we’ve been helpful with this collection of GIF emails. If you have more favorite examples by these brands or others, feel free to share them with all of us in the comments below.

Wanna have a look at 35 Creative Welcome Email Examples?

[ad_2]

Email Newsletter Ideas for December: 15 Festive Examples

[ad_1]

Wanna get inspired with amazing email newsletter ideas for December? Read on!

Ahh… December. The favorite month of many. The smell of freshly baked gingerbread cookies is filling the air. Festive lights and decorations are making the atmosphere joyful and merry. Laughter and the feeling of home are filling the hearts. All this magic of the last month of the year got us dreaming about enchanting email newsletter ideas for December.

In today’s post, we’ve gathered awesome email newsletter ideas for December to help you maximize the success of your campaigns. Without wasting any more time, let’s explore the examples.

Welcome, Winter!

December is the first month of the winter in the Northern hemisphere. In regards to your email newsletter templates, this means one thing: snow!

Some people relate snow to a breath-taking beauty, others – to fun activities. Either way, making your newsletter snow-themed will impress your subscribers. Here are a few examples to get your creativity flowing.

J.Crew is one of the brands that rock with their email marketing. In this email campaign, they used the winter as a theme to promote their sale.

J Crew Winter sale

Using GIF in email always spices up the inbox. Follow this example by J. Jill to engage your subscribers with an awesome animated campaign and make them click through.

J. Jill’s Winter Sale

Ann Taylor also surprises with ingenious email marketing campaigns. For this one, they used a snowflake as a clock to create urgency and provoke recipients to click through.

Ann Taylor Going Going winter email

Gift Guide

In the season of giving, what a better idea for a newsletter than a gift guide? We’ve seen many brands take this direction. The tactic certainly works in favor of engaging your recipients and boosting your sales. Check out a few examples.

Here is a fun way to arrange your product suggestions shown by Michael’s: in the shape of a gift. You can experiment with different shapes associated with the winter and the holiday season, such as a snowflake, a Christmas tree, etc.

Michaels Gift Guide email

Here is another great idea for your gift guide. J.Crew sent a friendly email gift guide labeling each suggestion with “for him”, “for her”, and “for kids”.

J Crew gift guide

An another example of showing both women’s and men’s suggestions is Boden’s gift guide email campaign.

Firstly, thet divided their email into two parts: women’s and men’s. Then, they numbered their suggestions and included a list of the items’ names.

Announce new features

Because… why not? December is the month during which people are naturally in a good mood. This means they are more inclined to accept new ideas.

Here is an example by American Eagle Outfitters. They announced a new app – a virtual closet. In the month of gift shopping, announcing an app that will help you shop more easily? For sure, this sounds like a great idea!

American Eagle Outfitters December email

Pre-holiday sales

As soon as December kicks in, people start looking for shopping deals. And you should be ready for the rising demand. Here are a couple of examples of pre-holiday email campaigns in December.

Brooks Brothers announced 6 days of giving at the beginning of December. Such a campaign not only creates a buzz but it also strengthens the brand-customer relationship as it provokes users to check the brand’s daily offer each day for 6 days.

brooks brothers december email

TOMS went even further by making a similar campaign for almost two weeks. Such a campaign gives you an opportunity to send a new email each day. And with people waiting for your next offer, you will certainly increase your email marketing metrics.

TOMS email December

Last-minute sales

Of course, there will always be people who leave their shopping for the last minute. And that’s where you step in.

Here is an example for such campaign by J.Crew. We love how they made it red-themed and added a hand-drawn clock icon at the top, just to create a little bit of urgency.

J Crew Holiday sale

Another good example of promoting holiday sales is this one by Levi’s. They made it festive, sparkling and certainly stressing on the discount you will receive.

Levi's December email

Post-holiday sales

Just to boost the mood of your subscribers, send a post-holiday campaign offering even bigger discounts. Here is what Avon did for their subscribers after the holidays were over.

AVON - FREE Shipping and Post-Holiday Sale email

Warm wishes

Just because people are in a shopping mood, doesn’t mean that all your December emails should be all about sales and promotions.

December is about family. And since you really want to keep your subscribers close, it’s a really good idea to send them warm wishes during the holidays. Just to show them that you care. Because you really do, right?

Here is an example by Anthropologie – a lovely illustrated email template personalized with the names of the real people who stand behind the brand.

Anthropologie December Email

Another lovely example. This one is by J.Jill that sent a very elegant greeting email with a red ribbon shaped like a Christmas tree.

J Jill email December

A stylish greeting email by Barneys New York. Besides sending warm wishes, they also included a small, unobtrusive call to action below.

barney's holiday email

Feelin’ the inspiration rash?

We truly hope this collection of email newsletter ideas for December got you inspired to create amazing email campaigns. If you want to share your own ideas, feel free to do so in the comments below. May all your December campaigns be merry and successful!

[ad_2]

8 Tips to Write Better Order Confirmation Emails

[ad_1]

Be honest: are you treating your order confirmation emails as an afterthought?

If so, you aren’t alone. Because there are more pressing messages for marketers to focus on, right?

Think again. Order confirmation emails are arguably one of the most important messages in the world of ecommerce. 

How so? Keep in mind that confirmation emails receive 8x the opens of a traditional marketing message.

And so while your customers might be sleeping on some of your emails right now, your confirmation messages a prime time to catch your customers’ attention. Such messages are also a key aspect of customer retention.

Considering that it costs at least five times as much to acquire a new customer than it does to retain an old one, anything you can do to keep your current buyers in your funnel is a major plus.

With all of this in mind, it’s clear why confirmation messages deserve your undivided attention.

 

8 Ways to Instantly Improve Your Order Confirmation Emails

Confirmation emails are all about capitalizing on your customers’ momentum. They’ve made that ever-so-important purchase.

Now what?

Thankfully, brands have no shortage of options when it comes to those precious next steps. Want to hype something else in your catalog? Grow your social following? Totally up to you.

No matter what you might be selling, here are eight strategies that can instantly boost engagement and potential revenue from your order confirmation emails.

 

1. Get Personal

Although confirmation emails are indeed autoresponders, they certainly shouldn’t feel robotic.

Unfortunately, that’s exactly how many brands treat them.

We live in a world where consumers crave personal and emotional connections with the brands they support. A bland, one-size-fits-all autoresponder doesn’t exactly scream “personal touch,” does it?

At the same time, it’s not as if you can tailor each and every confirmation email beyond populated fields (name, order number and so on).

So how do you find a happy medium?

For confirmation emails, brands should look for ways to let their personality shine through imagery and copy.

More specifically, a distinct brand voice.

This example from Boden does a brilliant job of showing off their personality from top to bottom.

order confirmation emails Boden

The playful tone of the “New clothes incoming” tagline starts things off on a positive note. The notion of “holding onto” the email is also clever, treating the transaction as something that happened in-person.

Other subtle touches such as consistently using “we” and “you” makes the message seem more conversational. This continues throughout the rest of the message including some creative calls-to-actions (“This Way” and “Spill the Beans”) which are in line with Boden’s brand voice.

order confirmation emails Boden

This confirmation email from Polaroid is a straightforward autoresponder but likewise includes some small personal touches that make it effective.

order confirmation emails Polaroid

The “We’re on it” tagline signals that the company is paying attention. Coupled with conversational, reassuring copy, the message manages to address all of the buyer’s potential concerns.

And of course, the featured image is distinctly Polaroid.

Again, getting personal doesn’t have to mean reinventing the wheel.

The tone of this confirmation message from Fitbit puts the power of copy on display, starting with its subject line (“Today is the day! Your order has shipped.”)

order confirmation emails FitBit

Followed up by more light-hearted, humorous copy (“Are you smiling? You’re totally smiling”), the message keeps the personal notes above the fold before getting down to business with confirmation details.

These small personal elements may not seem “make-or-break,” but they can certainly add to a confirmation series that’s otherwise lacking a voice.

 

2. Recommend Products and Best Sellers

Order confirmation emails can be a potential goldmine of additional transactions, granted you don’t push too hard for that follow-up sale.

Perhaps one of the best ways to encourage repeat business is by offering up recommendations.

Consider that recommendations account for 31% of e-commerce revenue, not to mention significant upticks in return customers, conversions and order value.

Ecommerce giants like Amazon have proven time and time again the power of recommendations. Of course, technical know-how and having a platform for offering recommendations is what holds many smaller brands back.

The good news? You don’t necessarily need a full-blown recommendation engine to propose another purchase.

Instead, simply link to best sellers or featured products and link to them in your order confirmation autoresponders.

That’s exactly what West Elm does to sweeten their order messages. This not only makes the email feel more tailored and personalized but also encourages another transaction right then and there.

order confirmation emails West Elm

Highlighting best sellers serves as a proof that you already have satisfied customers and your products are in demand. If you aren’t already digging into your data to identify best sellers, maybe now’s the time.

 

3. Encourage Referrals

Order confirmations might feel like they’re “for-your-eyes-only” messages, but they can also bring new shoppers into the fold.

Providing a referral code or discount does double duty of enticing repeat business and introducing your products to a totally new audience.

For example, Brooklinen drops a brief referral promo in their emails to encourage sharing among friends.

order confirmation emails Brooklinen

Based on the best practices, you can tack on a referral pretty much anywhere throughout a confirmation email without interrupting your readers.

And if you’re on the fence about including a referral or feel that it’s too spammy, think again. A digital word of mouth is as powerful as ever, with referral customers boasting a 16% higher lifetime value than non-referrals.

In short, referral offers are win-wins as you create brand advocates and squeeze more out of your order confirmations at the same time.

 

4. Tack on a Discount

Not unlike referrals, offers and discounts in order confirmations can feel like a sort of reward to shoppers when presented tactfully.

This discount from Forever21 is fairly straightforward by offering up 10% off a future purchase. This sort of discount obviously isn’t going to break the bank, but may very well be the incentive someone needs to check out your store again.

order confirmation emails Forvere21

Of course, deals come in many shapes and sizes. This order confirmation from Ruelala offers a future discount in the form of free shipping. A smart move given that free shipping is more or less an expectation of many shoppers (thanks a lot, Amazon), note also how their offer is front-and-center.

order confirmation emails Ruelala

Here’s another free shipping discount, this time from Gilt. This time-sensitive offer is rather bold, especially since it only lasts for one hour.  That said, creating a sense of urgency obviously encourages shoppers to act sooner rather than later.

order confirmation emails Gilt

These examples speak again of the diversity of deals and the fact that brands have plenty of creative freedom when inserting them into their confirmation messages. Generally speaking, the most effective types of discounts include:

  • Sitewide discounts (30% off your entire purchase)
  • Dollar-off amounts ($5 off)
  • Minimum order value ($15 off an order of $60)
  • Buy-one, get-one offers

Offering such deals is also a prime option for those who are wary of offering discounts to new customers. Rather than worry about devaluing your product, these offers reward your current customers only.

 

5. Encourage Customers Follow You on Social

Sure, email subscribers are awesome. But email subscribers and social followers?

That’s even better.

Because encouraging both means that you have multiple touch-points to get your marketing message across to customers.

You don’t need much real estate in your emails to boost your social presence via email, either.

This confirmation from Sephora points to all of their social icons in a way that’s can’t-miss thanks to the contrasting colors. You can likewise tailor your social buttons based on whichever networks are your top priority.

order confirmation emails Sephora

Dollar Shave Club takes their social game to the next level by offering a place for buyers to share their latest purchase. Coupled with a referral code, shoppers have even more incentive to smash the share button.

order confirmation emails Dollar Shave Club

Dollar Shave Club and their email marketing at large focus heavily on the concept of community. Similarly, brands promoting their social channels should consider promoting their social following similarly.

Think about it. You’re trying to build a community of customers via social, right?

Beyond listening handles and hashtags, you can also take the time to mention why people should follow your accounts. Whether it’s exclusive content or social discounts, providing a concrete reason can score you more followers.

 

6. Set Crystal Clear Expectations

There’s no doubt that the public at large is more comfortable than ever with the concept of online shopping.

That said, they have every right to be skeptical about shipping or the specifics of their order. This is especially true if they’re first-time buyers who aren’t 100% familiar with your brand.

Besides, they’ve probably been burned in the past by another brand. This is your opportunity to prove that you’re not going to do the same.

That’s why it pays to be crystal clear about shipping and how buyers can keep track of their orders. You should also highlight customer support channels including email, social media, and a good old-fashioned phone number.

Rocksbox does a great job of conveying expectations for new buyers. Mapping out exactly what happens next and providing a tracking code, buyers don’t have to second-guess the status of their order.

order confirmation emails RocksBox

This sort of transparency and communication puts you in a positive light with your buyers. Rather than try to compete with the likes of Amazon with next-day shipping, simply provide realistic expectations and frame that your order will come as soon as it can.

 

7. Promote Your Loyalty Program

Looking to give your customers the VIP treatment? Your confirmation emails are one of the best places to make it happen.

As is the common thread with shoppers taking next steps, providing a concrete reason is going to encourage clicks versus being vague. Here Sperry outlines a laundry list of benefits for joining their loyalty program including freebies and exclusives.

order confirmation emails Sperry

If you haven’t revved up your loyalty program, look at your order confirmation emails as a starting point. They’re a great opportunity to segment your email list and reward your most eager buyers through exclusive deals.

Oh, and don’t forget that consumers spend 37% more with brands they’re a member of a loyalty program with.

Loyalty programs are another important aspect of customer retention. The offers and discounts you hype now will ultimately result in squeezing more out of your subscribers in the long run.

 

8. Incorporate User-Generated Content

Last but not least, let’s talk about the power of user-generated content (UGC).

Customer photos. Testimonials. Social snapshots.

All of these elements are proven trust-builders that create a strong sense of authenticity. They’re also a double whammy for promoting your social channels or hashtags, much like Man Repeller features their Instagram feed in their emails.

order confirmation emails Man Repeller

You could use UGC to promote hashtag contests and featured customers on your Facebook or Instagram. This encourages social sharing, more UGC and, most importantly, more sales.

In other words, an ecosystem of shopping and sharing.

With that, we wrap up our list!

 

Are You Making the Most of Your Confirmation Messages?

At a glance, order confirmation messages might not seem like much. But they can pack some serious marketing firepower when you think about them in terms of your big-picture goals.

The final takeaway here is that you should offer some sort of call-to-action following your purchase. Because if someone buys something from you once, they already trust you.

It’s about encouraging them to do it again.

And again.

Setting the initial tone with an order confirmation is the perfect way to do it. And so any combination of these tips is fair game as long as you’re driving shoppers to take action.

 

About the Author

Emil Kristensen is the CMO and co-founder of Sleeknote: a company that helps e-commerce brands engage their site visitors—without hurting the user experience.

[ad_2]

How to Choose an ESP? 15 Questions to Ask Before You Sign Up

[ad_1]

Torn between a couple of email service providers or even more? Relax, you are not alone. Making up your mind can be tough when there are hundreds of ESPs who all claim to offer “the best fit” for your business needs. In today’s post, we’ll go through several questions to ask the potential providers that will help you choose an ESP that will really be a match for your brand necessities. But before that, let’s answer a few questions you might be asking yourself right now.

What is an ESP for email marketing?

What is an ESP

ESP stands for email service provider. Email service providers are platforms which allow users to send mass marketing emails, mass transactional emails and other types of emails to specific lists of recipients (subscribers).

 

Why choose an ESP?

Email service providers let you send hundreds and thousands of emails to potential leads and customers with just a click. Moreover, most ESPs offer automations which means you can send mass emails even while you are sleeping. Such an opportunity is definitely alluring for most email marketers and business owners.

Undoubtedly, in order to be functional and competitive, email service providers need to:

  • allow users create and maintain lists of email subscribers;
  • allow users send emails to many subscribers at a time, by automation and/or manually;
  • offer a user-friendly email builder or maintain a library of pre-made email templates, since not everybody is familiar with HTML for email;
  • provide reports which help users measure the success of their campaigns.

 

Why choosing a particular ESP is so important?

Don’t they all offer the same? No, not really, and that’s definitely good news to you! Besides having different interfaces, email marketing platforms have several basic functionalities and a lot of different advanced features such as integration opportunities with third parties, email builders, error detection capabilities, security tools, etc. When it comes to choosing the right ESP, you need to find the one whose services and features correspond to your exact needs.

Once you’ve found the perfect match, you’ll know it because your deliverability rate and ROI will increase. Migrating to the new ESP will happen seamlessly, along with integrating your systems with it. You’ll receive collaboration and timely technical support. These and many more factors will clearly speak that you’ve chosen the right ESP but before you do, here are the questions you need to ask several email service provider candidates.

 

Questions to ask before you choose an ESP

Questions to ask before choosing an ESP

1. What email types do you support?

Some ESPs are exclusively focused on a transactional email service which means they are great if you need to send automated responses, operational messages, and other transactional mailings. However, if your purpose is to conduct whole email marketing campaigns, you need to find an appropriate vendor.

2. What are the costs?

Planning your budget is a must-have step before you decide on an ESP. Ask for a consultation on the plans according to the volume of your email database and sending patterns. Have in mind that some ESP offer free plans with basic features which might or might not be good for you. Ask for such and then upgrade to paid plans.

3. What about additional costs, fees, payment methods, and termination terms?

These are all factors you need to clear up when considering different ESPs. It’s important not to make rash decisions. At first, a vendor may seem more affordable but there may be additional costs that will impact your budget. In result, the scales may turn in favor of the other. Everything related to costs and payment needs to be cleared up in advance.

4. Is the interface user-friendly?

As a user, you would love to set up new campaigns and monitor results as quickly as possible. Your ESP should provide an easy-to-understand, intuitive and functional interface that will help you do your job seamlessly.

5. Do you have an email builder or an email template library?

Not everyone wants to integrate custom HTML emails and even if you do, for some campaign you would just want to use the ESP’s email builder. How easy is it to work with? Is there a diversity of pre-made templates that can be edited?

6. Is API integration available?

If you want to connect your own platform and CRM tools to the ESP in order to sync data and manage your systems from a single interface, then you need to ask in advance if this option is provided.

7. Will you have a dedicated IP?

A dedicated IP allows you to control and maintain your reputation as an email sender, as well as have a better control on your deliverability. If you are going to share ID with other senders, you need to ask the provider how they are going to manage the shared ID reputation, e.g. will they suspend accounts which harm the IP? Moreover, if you send emails to huge databases, ask if you can use several dedicated IPs and how much would that cost.

8. What are your deliverability rate and is deliverability monitored?

Email deliverability is a major factor which determines your success. Before you decide on a vendor, ask them about their deliverability rate for the entire customer base. Ask if they monitor deliverability constantly. Do they allow third-party deliverability audit or do they offer one?

9. How about segmentation options and A/B testings?

When asking about segmentation options and A/B testings, we recommend that you ask if the ESP supports exactly the segmentation options you need and how easy would that be to handle? Would you have to create separate versions of the same template and separate email lists even if you want to change only the subject line? Or would the template update automatically? What are the possibilities for segmentation?

10. What is your uptime and how do you handle the downtime?

Uptime is also a major factor you need to ask about. Choose an ESP which can provide 99.9% uptime and also ask how they handle the downtime. Do they recover data? Ask about their records of past crises and how they handled the situation.

11. How will the migration to the ESP go?

You are looking for a smooth migration process without impacting your revenue or other essential metrics.

12. How will you track your success?

Ask about what kind of analysis and reports the vendor provides. The basic metrics you need to follow are sent emails, delivered emails, bounces, opens, clicks.

13. How about customer support?

Customer support is as essential as many other factors when choosing an ESP. Would you require 24/7 support? What are the channels they use for customer support – is a live chat or a phone call available? The answers to these questions determine the timely reaction of the vendor when you need assistance. Also, if you need training with the email design or coding, ask if they offer such.

14. Security and compliance with regulations?

For you, it’s very important to know that the email service provider uses reliable security tools and if their policy is compliant with the regulations. Sending emails to different audiences may require different levels of regulation. Also, ask about how they collect emails and how they manage the unsubscribe process.

15. Is there a free trial?

Even you think you’ve found the perfect match for your business needs, you can never be completely sure unless you’ve tested out the platform for some time.

 

To sum up,

Make sure you know the answers to these questions before you finally choose an ESP that corresponds to your needs best. If you believe even more questions are important in order to help you choose an ESP that’s right for your business, feel free to share with us in the comments below.

[ad_2]