Email Marketing is well-known within the Ecommerce sphere, but its ability to contribute to brand revenue and maintain strong engagement with customers is often significantly underestimated.
By failing to implement a solid Email Marketing strategy, businesses risk losing a lot of potential revenue. Email is powerful in the way it influences all stages of a consumer’s purchasing journey – moving them through Awareness, Consideration and Conversion.
As a method to reach engaged customers, Email achieves conversion rates 1.5 – 3 times higher than other channels. By nurturing customers, Email consistently elicits higher average order values than other channels. Email also has an unparalleled ability to reach past customers and deliver highly personalised and contextual messages. As such, the return on investment for Email Marketing is often limitless since the returns from Email are substantial while the cost is almost zero.
For Ecommerce brands, outside of their website, Email Marketing has a unique ability to nurture and retain customers, and as a truly owned medium, it grants you exceptional reach and understanding of your customers and subscribers.
Email goes hand in hand with acquisition channels including Social and Search advertising, and SEO. Customers are often not ready to buy right away – some may simply be browsing on their first session, and others may want to do more research. It is a positive step when a customer subscribes and provides their consent to receive communication via email – it’s an invitation for businesses to nurture the new subscriber through personalised content and stories that assist them in becoming familiar with the brand.
With Email, brands can proactively resolve any doubts and build trust with customers during the pre-purchase stage. Trust can be built by providing helpful information about the brand by presenting product information, shipping information, care tips, FAQs, reviews, and user stories. Email can also be used to send friendly reminders – for example, when a customer views a product multiple times but doesn’t buy, sending recommended matching products and reviews for that product can help get them across the line. Follow-up emails such as these make a significant contribution to customer acquisition and can help businesses gain potential customers through a simple nudge or gesture.
Retaining customers through digital channels such as social media is difficult as it requires customers to actively follow a page to see relevant updates. Constant changes to social media algorithms make it increasingly difficult and expensive to use these channels for retention. Furthermore, unlike Email, brands are limited in their ability to personalise posts and direct particular messages to specific customers. With emails being direct and personal by nature, messages sent via email will reach subscribers on a consistent basis.
Emails can target past customers with a very high level of specificity. Since all transactions are made using an email address, businesses are able to build customer profiles and analyse purchase trends and history to better identify what kinds of messages and information a customer will enjoy receiving. This is a powerful way of forming and providing specifically targeted offers to win-back customers who may be at high risk of churning.
Many brands rely on social media to grow their business; however, with recent changes made to feeds, social media no longer allows for the powerful reach that it used to. Facebook, Instagram, and even Twitter have introduced algorithms that alter the arrangement of feeds, almost always making it harder and more expensive for businesses to reach customers organically, lessening their control over who is able to see their activities. Brands find they’re required to pay higher promotion fees just to reach their existing fans.
For Email, there are far fewer obstacles. As long as you have good deliverability practices (a post for another day), your emails will land in practically every subscribers inbox, and the messages can and should be specific to each user.
Email Marketing is vital for brands who want to reach their customers personally and build a customer list that they own. It is absolutely complementary to Social media and other channels, and solidify the customer’s relationship with the brand, in a way that’s unique among other digital channels. When assessing your Acquisition, Retention, Reach and Segmentation, make sure you take full advantage of the unique advantages Email affords you.
By Nhu Nguyen