With so much focus on social media marketing, email marketing can often be overlooked by retail and ecommerce businesses. But email marketing is often the most effective channel, with carefully segmented behavioural emails taking engagement and customer response to the next level. We’ll take a look at how retail businesses can use customer data to create behavioural emails that both increase sales, as well as developing lasting customer loyalty.
Behavioural email marketing for retailers: a quick overview
Behavioural email marketing is a marketing strategy that uses precise and personally relevant triggered emails to engage with customers and drive their future behaviour. Data such as purchase history, significant customer dates, past interactions with a business and past search history all work together to segment and target customers as individuals. It works because it’s hyper-relevant to each customer, increasing relevance and personalisation to keep them engaged with a retailer.
Behavioural emails work for many reasons. Compared to social media which is often just ‘consumed’, emails are sent directly to the customer. They keep customers engaged with relevant content, make them feel valued as an individual and the ability to segment by their past behaviour can push future purchases. Automated behavioural emails make segmented marketing much easier for a business.
Collect useful and relevant customer data
The key to creating an effective behavioural email strategy is to use every interaction with a customer to collect valuable data. Capturing email addresses, important dates such as birthdays and anniversaries as well as their personal interests and motivations for visiting your retail store or website are all vital to segment data successfully. Offering wi-fi marketing in a brick-and-mortar store is a great way to capture customer data through log-ins, whereas online retailers can track and use every step of a customer’s journey easily. Customers are often more than happy to provide this data,expecting a more personalised and relevant experience.
Customers love to be engaged with a business, and targeted emails really help with this. For example, customers can opt-in to be sent reminders to purchase a gift for an upcoming birthday, they can be emailed about an upselling opportunity, or they can be asked for their opinions on a recent purchase. Valuable data used well creates engagement and interaction with a retailer, ultimately contributing to more sales.
5 ways to use behavioural emails to increase retail sales
Here are five ways retailers can use behavioural emails to specifically increase sales.
- Send a welcome email to new customers
Everyone likes to feel valued, so or new customers, a welcome email makes sense. Retailers can use this to show they value a customer’s custom (and data) simply by saying hello and thanking them for their recent purchase or interaction. This starts interaction and engagement with the customer immediately, and retailers can also send a coupon or discount code to encourage a sale.
- Emails can reward valued customers
Loyal customers are profitable, so it’s vital for a retailer to reward existing customers. Reward emails help to increase the lifetime value of a customer. Sending a discount code for 15% off their next purchase, for example not only rewards their recent purchase, but it encourages them to make another one too; constantly driving them through the sales funnel for a retailer. Segmenting emails by value of purchase history lets retailers easily offer different discounts and incentives, to their biggest spending (and often most loyal) customers.
- Generate an effective retention strategy with emails
Most customers need some prompting to make repeat purchases, so using data such as most recent purchase or reminding customers of important dates is a great way for businesses to retain customers. Retailers can offer ‘we missed you’ coupons or time-limited special offers to prompt purchase behaviour from an existing, but lapsed customer base. Engaging with previous customers is an important way to maximise a retailer’s current database.
- Send an email to ask customers to leave product reviews
Product reviews are really important for any retailer, so emailing a customer to ask for a review on a recent purchase is essential. This not only increases engagement with products offered by a retailer, it keeps brand awareness and future interaction high to encourage loyalty from the customer. Offering a reward in the email, for example a discount after they’ve submitted the review is also useful for increasing future sales.
- Suggest relevant future purchases
Targeted emails can be used as key sales drivers. After any purchase either in store or online, a customer can be emailed with a link to ‘we think you might also like’ products. Not only can these emails be automated for easy marketing, sending relevant suggestions to customers will make them feel valued and understood; increasing that all important engagement again.
Behavioural email works for retailers
Collecting and using customer data to segment effectively allows retailers to market to customers in a tailored, individual way. Automated behavioral emails make this much easier for a retailer, giving them the tools to create engaged and valued customers who make repeat purchases. It’s really this simple- retailers who want more sales need to use behavioural email marketing.
Hannah Hambleton is the Content Manager for Beambox. Beambox works with thousands of small businesses to provide the perfect wi-fi experience. Hannah writes about marketing trends for retailers and hospitality businesses, giving them the insights to increase sales and customer engagement.
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