Most people think transactional emails tell the recipient about some financial transaction – an online purchase, for instance. Actually, they include a lot more. An ecommerce store’s transactional emails cover order confirmation, account creation, post order feedback, daily deals, forgot password links, email newsletter sign up etc.
As a marketer, you’ll likely value the importance of transactional emails a lot more if you understand what all things transactional emails do. Here’s a brief list:
- Transactional emails make the task of your support team a great deal easy.
- They offer a subtle but powerful opportunity to upsell.
- They present a unique occasion to reinforce your brand.
- They reduce the post-purchase anxiety of your buyers.
- They send out notifications like password-changes and help reassure users their accounts are secure.
- Transactional emails are opened a lot more, are opened more repeatedly, and generate more revenue per email than promotional emails.
Now that we have established the correct context, let’s look at 5 really actionable ways to super-charge your transactional emails for your eCommerce store.
Welcome emails are made to convince your customers to shop for your products or services. This type of emails requires being impressive for your customers. You can brief them about how it is beneficial for them to create an account and what benefits they will get with this. Let’s see the importance of welcome emails in a better way.
Here is an example of the Birchbox’s welcome email which has started it with a brief thank you message. With vibrant colors, they have evidently made the email attractive and impressive. They have also given a short list of benefits that the customer can enjoy by having an account. This is a perfect example of welcome emails that are sure to catch your customer’s attention. You should make optimum utilization of the opportunity to directly interact with your customer with this email. With Magento, it is easy to edit the transaction email content according to your wish.
Bonus tip: Ensure your emails goes into recipient’s inbox
Unless your emails are delivered to the recipient’s inbox, optimization has no meaning.
To ensure your emails reach the inbox and not the spam folder, you’ll want to first carry out the DKIM SPF authentication. Think of DKIM SPF as digital stamps that validate your outgoing emails. With these stamps, the recipient’s email server is convinced your email is not a part of phishing or spoofing scam.
You may use separate IPs for transactional emails and marketing emails. That way, the changes in a reputation of one IP doesn’t negatively influence the reputation of the other. Many organizations also use a different domain altogether (using firstname.lastname@example.org in place of email@example.com, for instance).
2.Email For New Order
This is a crucial point in the list of transactional email. The confirmation email gives your customers the assurance that his order is confirmed and the transaction work is in progress. Here you can add your personal touch to convince your customer of purchasing more from your store. It brings interest in your customer’s mind to shop again from you. Here is an example of the confirmation email of Amazon which shows their framework on such emails.
Lamer.com marketing strategy is a remarkable one in this regard. They provide a coupon code to their first customers for their next purchase. This persuades the customer to opt for their service again. Well, this strategy is an amazing one but we should also keep few things in mind before planning something like this. This sort of coupon code might not work well in case of first-time buyers. This is because most of the time first-time buyers are skeptical about their next purchase. So instead of offering the discount on their next shopping, it will be a better option to ask them to join you on a social media platform. In this way, you can also stay in touch with your new customers and keep them updated about new developments in your shop.
Also, it is important to alleviate post-purchase anxiety; after making the payment, your customers may suddenly feel unsure as to whether they made the right choice. Potential customers are known to frequently abandon shopping carts when they grow unsure.
It is the right time to show all the benefits and features of the product they have already purchased or is considering to purchase.
At such times, transactional emails can not only explain the features but also show why the product was the right purchase. You can also add the contact details of the team if the prospect is unsure of the product.
All this goes a long way in improving the buyer’s confidence in your product.
Firebox’s order email is a perfect case study on how e-commerce stores can give more trust and confidence to their customers with every transaction
Bonus Tip: Focus on the “email’s objective”
The chief objective of transactional emails is to report a transaction. Don’t lose focus and turn the email into a sales email.
Keep your subject lines self-explanatory. A subject line like, “Your product delivery schedule” is less accurate than “Your smartwatch will reach you within 2 working days”.
Next, let the customers know if they need to do something.
If you’re writing regarding an abandoned shopping cart, don’t bury the idea under numerous offers. If you’re writing regarding a handbag your buyer is trying to return, tell them what exactly they need to do. Making things simple is your first priority; don’t mess with it. Sales content can wait.
3.Abandoned Cart Email
Not all customers proceed to checkout after keeping products in the cart. This tendency gives birth to abandoned carts. A survey shows that more than 60% of shopping carts remain abandoned in an eCommerce store.
A huge amount of revenue gets stuck because of this. So you have to make efforts to convince these customers to complete their shopping. In this case, communicating with your registered customers is easy with friendly emails and reminders about their chosen products which are kept abandoned in a cart. For a better explanation of this point, the example of ralphLauren.com abandoned cart email is found to be very convincing.
What Ralph Lauren does here is that it sends friendly reminder emails to the customers with the special offer on those particular products which are kept in the abandoned cart to make it affordable for the customers. With this, they make sure that their shopping should not be kept incomplete because of any budget issue.
Another example which has explained the same in a different manner is the following.
Warby Parker’s trick to convince their customers to complete their shopping is smarter. As you can see they did not offer any discount here instead they reminded them of free shipping and return which can be a driving force for the customers to proceed to the final step of purchasing. Customers are often worried about the shipping and returning charges on their online shopping. As a result, if they have even the smallest amount of doubt in a particular product they do not make the purchase because of shipping and returning charges. Here Warby Parker has found the perfect solution to the problem for its customers.
4.Email For Shipping Confirmation
Every customer eagerly waits for the shipping confirmation email. In this email, you can advertise about relevant products that will be useful for your customers. In other words, shipment emails are happy emails for your customers and they are always enthusiastic about it. You can use this opportunity and suggest them other relevant products to buy in future in the email. You can also add a product tracking number and expected delivery schedule with this email.
In the below-mentioned example, Huckberry has made a direct shipment update email that contains detailed information on the shipment and tracking. Also, they have mentioned about the products that are trending which can work as an upsell to the customers.
Bonus Tip: Look for additional areas to help your customers
You’re sending out this message because the recipient did something, or tried to do something. Now you need to explore how you can help further.
The recipient would appreciate when you make a genuine effort to add value. If the recipient has, for instance, bought a reading device, see if they’d care considering a power-bank. If the recipient has bought a computer, maybe they’ll need a glare-control screen as well. This can be fulfilled with dynamically populated lists, wherever feasible.
Harry’s Razor sends some kick-ass email with some solid advice on how to maintain and manage stubble. This transaction email not only gives a notification that the order is in place but also gives them some value on what they can do with the product that he has purchased. Sounds cool right?
This is another example of shipment email where the company has given advertisements of other products which are available in their store. Though the product advertising in the email is a good idea here it would have been better if suggestions of relevant products were given. For example, if a customer buys a pair of jeans you can suggest them to buy shirts and t-shirts to pair with it.
Keeping all these factors in mind a shipment email should be constructed in such a way that the customer can easily track and gets updates on his or her product delivery. You should never forget the real motive of this type of transaction email. Along with the required information, you can input something which will be useful for your sales.
Bonus Tip: Fully exploit Analytics
Sending out emails without exploiting analytics is pretty much like undertaking a journey without a map; you don’t know where you’ll end up.
To begin with, do you’re A/B testing (also called Split testing). See which kind designs and content produce the results you’re looking for.
Next, you’ll want to better use responsive layouts. With more and more emails being read on mobile screens, it is imperative your designs suit all sorts of devices.
Finally, keep the email neat and clutter-free. The average attention span of people today is reported to be no more than 8 seconds. If your message is cramped, verbose or otherwise heavy, you lose.
Keep going back to your analytics to understand the recipients better.
Here is a transactional email for order confirmation from Amazon. Along with the order number and details for the purchased item, the email features a Popular Shopping Features.
Amazon keeps experimenting with their email transaction designs.
5.Email For Customer Feedback
Customer feedback emails are very important for your business. Unlike other transactional emails, this email is delivered to the customer after the product is delivered, so that the customer can share their shopping experience with you. Usually, product marketing is not initiated here but offering discounts on sharing their feedback is definitely a good strategy.
In this email, it is clearly seen that the company is offering a gift on customer review on the mentioned time. This is a smart way to motivate customers to make further purchases from their store. For a successful feedback transaction email, more emphasis should be given to customer satisfaction than sales. It is always better to post feedback survey forms directly on websites where offers can be merged with that easily.
Now, what about the customers who are not so satisfied with your service? Well, in that case, you need to make efforts to please them. You should ensure that you take proper measures to help these customers get their satisfied result. Always remember that dealing with existing customers is easier than the dealing with the new ones.
Bonus tip: Treat them especially so they come again
Yes, you need to really care. If the recipient is already your customer, remember this it costs five times as much to attract a new customer than to keep an existing one.
Value every existing customer and show you really care. Make every experience as smooth and as glitch-free possible. For instance, how can you make the signing in process easier and faster? With a neatly worded message, you can hand-hold the customer to do small things.
Avoid sending from no-reply addresses. When you send from no-reply addresses, you’re effectively telling the recipient you don’t want to hear from them! That doesn’t sound very friendly, does it?
Tory Burch is a classic example where they are sending out information in the transaction email to add their email to the user’s email book. A lot of times email’s do get into the spam box or in the promotion tab in Gmail which creates a lot of anxiety for customers. With this information, users can add the emails in their address book and safely expect the email coming up in their inbox.
In certain transactions, the recipient finds it excruciatingly difficult to wait. One classic example is password-change requests.
Your recipient is almost on tenterhooks; every second of delay increases the risk your customer will move away and never return. Such transactional emails must be delivered promptly.
There’s something called the ‘What Next’ question in marketing. When the recipient receives your email, what is the recipient expected to do? What Next?
Answer the question as early as possible in the email; that tells the recipient you can be trusted when it comes to attending to matters. Do it well, and your recipients will open every email you send out because they know your emails are useful and clear.
Lingo’s cool password email is an interesting case study how they have redesigned their Forgot password page. Not only the page looks clean and quirky but also in the footer they are having a messaging of their uniqueness and what they stand for – this reiterates the value they offer to their user base.
Bonus Tip: Sweat the small stuff
Take care of the smallest of details.
Here are some of the many small things you’ll want to take care of. Keep your emails scannable, readable; don’t forget a huge proportion of emails are now read and re-read on mobile devices.
As an eCommerce development company, we always suggest using best practices that would help you to get the maximum out of your efforts. Hence, we suggest to Use simple HTML designs to be sure your emails are read perfectly across devices. You can test whether your promotional message should go in the footer or whether the sidebar makes it more presentable.
Finally, toe the line. Countries like Germany and Canada require your subject-line cannot mention a sales-offer (otherwise it will be construed as a marketing message, not a transactional message).
Transaction emails provide you the opportunity to directly communicate with your customers. In other words, it gives your company the voice to speak. Modifying these transactional emails in your ecommerce store according to your business need is highly advantageous for the sales of your company.
The above were some of the things we thought were important to optimize transaction emails for your eCommerce store What are some of your favorite tips to optimize transactional emails?