In the words of David Newman, “Email has an ability many channels don’t: creating valuable, personal touches – at scale.” It is one reason why email marketing remains the favorite tool of eCommerce business owners. It is the most widely used tactic for sales, lead generation, customer retention, and lead nurturing.

While email marketing is great at reaching out to your customers, you still need the right formula. You may just be wasting effort, time, and resources if you’re not reaching out to your client base with the right emails that align with where they are in their buying journey.

To ensure that your business keeps being profitable, we have put together this list of emails that you should be sending to your subscribers as an eCommerce business owner. 

The Stages of the Buying Journey for eCommerce Customers 

Before deciding on the types of emails to send, it is crucial to segment your eCommerce customers based on where they are in the buyer’s journey. In eCommerce email marketing, your customers could fall into three stages:

  • Interested Stage

The interested stage lumps subscribers and potential customers who interact with your brand primarily through gated content (for example, signing up for a coupon, or downloading a guide, amongst other things) but who have not purchased anything from your eCommerce store yet.

Also in this category are first-time buyers who did not end up making a purchase but only put products in their carts. 

Emails sent to buyers in this stage should aim to make prospects fall in love with your brand and encourage the first purchase.

  • Engaged Stage

The engaged stage comprises buyers who have made purchases from your store. However, depending on what your business focuses on, the subscribers in this stage can be further sub-segmented based on the product categories they purchased from and other categories of products they’ve interacted with while shopping on your eCommerce site.

The goal of emails sent to subscribers in this stage is to keep them engaged and to encourage repeat purchases.

  • Lapsed Stage

In the lapsed stage are subscribers who haven’t purchased your products or services over an extended period and may have also stopped reading your emails entirely. The goal is to re-activate the relationship and get them to make a purchase eventually. Sometimes this is successful, and sometimes it isn’t.

The subscribers that do not engage with the emails sent in the lapsed stage will eventually need to be unsubscribed to keep your email list fresh and updated.

6 Emails that You Should Be Sending as an eCommerce Business Owner

Now that you have identified the stages of your email subscribers let’s look at the type of emails you should send out to your subscribers.

1. Welcome Email

Has a new prospect created an account on your website? Signed up for one of your coupons? Signed up for your newsletter/email list? Then follow up with a welcome email.

Welcome emails are great opportunities for you to connect with new prospects. To make your welcome email successful, consider the following:

  • Including the word “welcome” in its subject line.
  • Sharing a few things that set your brand apart from its competitors.
  • Setting clear expectations on what they can expect from the emails you’ll be sending to them.
  • Making them an irresistible offer – this differs from what you promised before the sign-up. It should be a welcome offer that they can’t resist. A discount of limited-time free shipping is a good one to consider
  • Include links to your business’s social media pages to encourage social media engagement.

2. Lead Nurturing Sequence

Lead nurturing is primarily regarded as a B2B marketing tool, meaning many eCommerce business owners are not using it to their advantage. If you do, you would be part of the very few harnessing the benefits of lead nurturing for your eCommerce business.

You can make the subject of your nurture email sequence about your brand story, an educational series regarding specific products/services, stories of happenings in your business, entertainment-based content on trending issues (that align with your brand), or weekly roundups of significant industry events.

The key thing to remember? You’re building a deep relationship with your audience that’s not focused on selling (but will get you more sales eventually) but simply focusing on helping your audience and just connecting with them.

3. Cart Abandonment Emails

Over 69% of eCommerce shopping carts get abandoned before reaching checkout. Many factors contribute to cart abandonment – the need for buyers to create new accounts, complicated checkout, limited payment options, high shipping costs, and distractions at shopping time, amongst others.

Sending a cart abandonment email can recover around 20% of abandoned carts for your eCommerce business. For increased conversions, include a free-shipping limited-time offer or a discount if it doesn’t affect your profit too negatively. If you can’t, a reminder works just fine.

4. Order Confirmation Emails

Order confirmation emails are transactional emails that are great opportunities for you to upsell or cross-sell your products after a successful sale. It’s a subtle way to get your customers to buy more after purchasing from your store. Order confirmation emails, on average, have a 54% open rate with the possibility of getting up to 3.8 more sales from your customer.

These emails usually contain order and shipping details, amongst other things. In the emails, recommend products that are complementary to the customer’s purchase or recommend higher-priced upgrades to the current purchase.

5. Birthday Emails

Many customers become frustrated with generic email marketing. Customers expect personalization from companies and brands, which goes beyond addressing them by their first names.

One example that you could use to provide your customers with personalized experiences is the birthday email. This milestone email makes them feel appreciated and special. It’s a great way to build brand trust and loyalty.

For the best result, include a birthday ‘gift’, such as a discount code or coupon for the next purchase.

6. Win-Back Emails

Like the lead nurture sequence, win-back emails involve sending a series of emails to win back subscribers who haven’t opened your emails for some time. Depending on your business, the time frame is up to you, but 60 days is a good period to try this for.

These emails could be brand stories to remind subscribers about your business’s unique proposition, surveys to find out why they’re not engaging with your emails, special promotions to trigger a purchase, incentives for website visits, and many more.

Some of your subscribers will reconnect, while others won’t. In the case of inactive subscribers, you will need to let them go from your list after the win-back email sequence to ensure your emails get to those who are interested in engaging with your brand and, ultimately, making a purchase.

Email marketing is an inexpensive sales tool for eCommerce business owners, and it offers a high return on investment. Whether you’re preparing to send welcome emails, birthday emails, order confirmation emails, or another type of email campaign, Benchmark Email is here to help keep communication lines open with your customers. Sign up for free today!