Cover Story: From Soup to Nuts
3 Ways to Generate More Retail Sales Using Email in 2014
Retail e-commerce sales for 2013 were expected to reach $262.3 billion, an increase of 16.4 percent over 2012, according to eMarketer. So what's driving the traffic that generates these sales? Social media may be the darling of online marketing, but email is still the workhorse. Email provides over three-and-a-half times the website traffic of social media and nearly eight times the website traffic of display advertising for retailers, according to the Digital IQ Index: Specialty Retail report from think tank L2.
Here are three ways to teach your old email program new tricks. Before you discount these ideas, remember, the devil is in the details. You may be doing some or all of these things now, but are you testing your execution to optimize performance? If not, take a fresh look and start!
1. Turn new email subscribers into fans with your welcome program. Offer new subscribers more than just a hello. Provide a discount on their next purchase, use what you know about them via interests reported at sign-up and/or items bought if the opt-in was part of the checkout process to personalize the email with images or product offerings. Even better, invite them to share the discount with friends to extend your brand's reach.
2. Take cart abandonment one step further with browse retargeting. Cart abandonment campaigns are good, but consider moving upstream. Smart retailers are identifying serious browsers that don't put items in their cart, and then are using triggered emails to reach out to them as soon as they leave the site with product offerings related to what they were browsing. Automate this process and you have high conversion rates at a low ongoing cost.
3. Use order confirmations to drive future sales. Order confirmations are an underutilized marketing tool. You know what the email subscriber bought, so use this information to recommend other products they might like right in the order confirmation email. Once the rules are in place and the automation set up, it's an ongoing tool for driving additional sales and revenue.