8 Tips to Master Your Email Marketing Strategy in 2019

email marketing strategy

Everybody talks about how to improve their email marketing strategy, and to be honest, many have focused on this for some time.

Even for the most senior digital marketers out there working in ecommerce, you’ve probably read dozens of articles about email marketing–so, why read another one?

The scene of email marketing is constantly changing.

This shouldn’t surprise digital marketers, but instead, always make you hungry to learn more. Consumers are so used to email marketing strategies that they ignore branded emails in their inbox much more quickly.

In fact, Mail Chimp found the average email open rate for ecommerce businesses in March 2018 averaged around 15.66% in the U.S. Further, all industries owned a collective 20.81% open rate.

email open rates graph

But Epsilon data found the total industry average to be much higher just a few years ago in Q3 2016 with a 34.1% open rate.

What was once marketing channel powerhouse is now something many businesses struggle with in 2019.

Still, some brands are absolutely killing it with email marketing.

And to that point, we know email marketing still works. However, you have to put in the effort to stand out from your competition, which is why we’re here to help.

Here’s eight tips for ecommerce brands to improve their email marketing strategy in 2019:

1. Use Dynamic Content to Personalize Emails

In years past, personalizing an email with someone’s name was a big deal. Now, that’s the very least you could do with personalization marketing efforts.

Today, each of your emails should include personalization in more than one of the following places:

  • Subject line
  • Email copy
  • Images
  • Product offerings

Take Campaign Monitor as an example. In one of their promotional emails, they decided to test whether changing the images in their email to match the location of the recipient would make a difference. They created images for recipients in the U.S., U.K. and Australia and then tested these emails against a location-agnostic visual

campaign monitor location email example

As a result, their click-through rate increased by 29% with that simple of a personalization fix. You can also use dynamic content to personalize emails based on customer behavior and interests.

For example, a clothing brand could tailor their emails to the gender of the recipient or their past browsing history. If a subscriber browses your site for women’s clothing, don’t send them promotional emails highlighting men’s shoes.

This kind of dynamic personalization levels up your email marketing strategy and captures the attention of your audience.

2. Get Email Addresses Before the Checkout

In the past, the main place to get new subscriber email addresses was after a purchase.

Numerous ecommerce stores have opt-in email features right at checkout to get you add your email to their newsletter or promotional lists.

While this is still a viable email marketing strategy, what if you could get a potential customer’s email before the checkout process This would allow you to capture even more leads and to increase your potential for sales through email marketing. Here’s a few tips to try:

  • Offer Content: Provide content that’s relevant to your audience to easily collect email addresses for future promotions. For example, a company selling kayaks could offer a free guide to the best places to kayak. Your customers give up the email for the guide and you can now send promotional content.
  • Offer Discounts: Everybody loves a discount and many will give up their email to save. You’ve seen this strategy before in the sometimes comical: No, I don’t want to save money on my next order, pop up. This tactic has become very popular for ecommerce brands by offering a quick 20% off just for signing up through an email–mostly because it works.h&m email sign up
  • Interactive Pop Ups: Another way to offer incentives and spark engagement is through interactive sign ups. This pop up allows you to win over new customers (and get their email address) with the chance to spin the wheel and win some discounts.

interactive modal for a discount example

  • Product Availability Notifications: Get shoppers’ emails by allowing them to submit it when a product is out of stock or even running low on availability and want to be notified. This helps get more emails before checkout so potential shoppers turned away from unavailable items still can be involved.

casual product availability email

3. Use Transactional Emails to Win More Conversions

We all know that transactional emails (order confirmation, shipping confirmation, etc.) get opened more than your average marketing email.

Are you using these transactional emails to the full? Check out what Nordstrom does at the bottom of their order confirmation emails:

nordstrom be the first to know email

This upsell attempt is based on products that the user looked at but didn’t buy, and is a fantastic example of how to get more out of your transactional emails.

How can you do the same?

First, include more than just the transactional information in your email. Add some personality, and give the customer a chance to see your brand’s fun side.

Next, go for the upsell. Use dynamic content as discussed above to personalize recommendations for this particular customer. You know what they bought already, so you have a good head start in knowing what they might like to buy in the future.

Lastly, you could try for a referral. Skillshare does this with their transactional emails.

skillshare referral email example

By including some of these elements, you can win more conversions from your transactional emails.

4. Segment by Interests & Buyer Type

Segmenting by interests is a must nowadays. Almost every other ecommerce brand already does this, so you need to be on board.

But, what about segmenting by buyer type? Each customer is unique in the way they make purchase decisions. Here are some ideas of how to segment by type of shopper:

  • High Average Order Value: Do you have some customers whose average order value tends to be higher than others? Tempt them with product bundles and packaged discounts.
  • Discount Shopper: Some shoppers go weak in the knees for a good discount. If you see a pattern with some shoppers who only make purchases when your products are on sale, make sure you send them special offers or clearance sale updates.
  • Exclusivity: A sense of exclusivity is a powerful purchase motivator. If you have a limited-time product or a special V.I.P. offer, make sure you let these customers know first. Get them to sign up for a special mailing list that sends them exclusive offers before anyone else.

ann taylor exclusive email offer

5. Create Triggered Email Campaigns

Triggered emails win at the end of the day. In fact, a WebFX infographic stated they get 70% higher open rates than normal email marketing efforts.

webfx email infogaphic example

Here are two types of triggered emails that you can add to your email marketing strategy:

  • Loyalty Emails: Your customers love to be appreciated. So, why not remind them of a special milestone, such as the anniversary of their first purchase from you? Celebrate brand milestones with your customers like the sock brand Bombas.

bombas email offer

  • Promotions for Returning Shoppers: Imagine that a customer who made a purchase a while back has come back to browse on your site, but doesn’t buy anything. That could be an excellent trigger to send an email their way. You can remind them of the great products you’re offering, update them on new or featured products or give them a special discount.

6. Improve Your Abandoned Cart Emails With Visuals

Abandoned cart emails have been around since the beginning of time, which means it’s high time to spice yours up! One of the best ways to make your abandoned cart emails stand out is by including visuals.

After all, a customer may not remember exactly which product they had in their cart or why they wanted it in the first place. Tailor your abandoned cart email with pictures of the product they were planning to buy.

Fab abandoned cart email

Homeware brand Fab does this with their abandoned cart emails to get you interested again with a simple, but fun message.

Of course, the visuals in your abandoned cart emails can also be a way to show off your brand personality. For example, Black Milk Clothing does a fantastic job at sending abandoned emails to its customers to tug on their heart strings.

black milk email example

Where can you go wrong with cute puppies to win back customers?

7. Introduce Replenishment Emails

For some ecommerce brands, you know exactly when your customers are going to run out of the products they’ve purchased. This is the perfect time to send them an email to remind them it’s time to fill up on whatever they’re about to run out of.

For example, see how dog food brand Just Right by Purina created the perfect replenishment email:

email replenish example from purina

Besides being extremely precise as to how long you have left to replenish, this email is also personalized by using the name of the dog (because, let’s face it, they’re more important). Even the CTA button is personalized!

Creating replenishment emails is a great way to win back previous purchasers with your email marketing strategy.

8. Use Emails to Get Reviews & User-Generated Content

Another essential part of your email marketing strategy should include review collection. Using the right methods, these kinds of emails can get excellent results.

To add a little incentive, you could even offer a discount on their next purchase. Look at the way Tower Housewares does this with their review collection emails.

Tower Email Example

Another way to use post-purchase emails is by getting customers to post user-generated content on their social channels. This is exactly what cosmetics brand Lush did with their post-purchase emails.

lush email ugc

Again, adding a little incentive also helps motivate users to post those pictures for a chance to win.

At PowerReviews, we believe in making it as simple as possible for brands and retailers to collect as many reviews through a straightforward and easy post-purchase email. Our review collection abilities help businesses increase more authentic and valuable content by making processes short and sweet.

Ulta Post Purchase Email

Want to see how PowerReviews can help your business collect more reviews and help you with your email marketing strategy? Talk to our awesome team today!

Take Your Email Marketing Strategy to the Next Level This Year

It’s true, email marketing isn’t something new for ecommerce brands. However, times are changing. If you want to keep engaging your customers and winning their hearts with your emails, you’ll need to keep up with current trends.

Using these innovative email marketing strategies, you’ll stand out from the competition and earn the kind of ROI your brand deserves.

Amy Copadis

Amy Copadis is a writer and blogger covering various topics including digital marketing, travel, natural health and ecommerce.