Tips for Ecommerce Newsletters: How to Make Them Shine Like a Star

You’ve spent all this time creating your brand, designing your store, curating the perfect product catalog and creating a user experience. If you’re using some of the proven methods we’ve offered to get more ecommerce newsletters subscribers, congratulations. Now it’s time to take the next step.

By culling data from recent studies on email marketing statistics, we’ve compiled a few tips for ecommerce newsletters that will make yours shine like a star.

Read on to learn more.   

Offer Valuable Information

The number one factor in getting your ecommerce newsletter opened is the value that it offers to readers. According to a report by Vertical Response, citing recent statistics from Neilsen, 40% of readers won’t even consider opening a newsletter that doesn’t offer unique, valuable content.

Certainly, you’ll want to use a newsletter to facilitate greater interest in your products, including flash sales, new arrivals, clearance sales, etc. But you also want to make sure you sell the reader on the value contained in the newsletter as well. Nobody wants to knowingly open an advertisement.

To gain more opens, consider these ecommerce newsletter tips:

Add a few features to your newsletter that encourages a strong open rate.

  • Excerpts and links to related blog posts
  • Infographics, charts and visuals
  • Factoids, polls, contests and videos
  • Webinar invites and information
  • Company news, updates and announcements
  • Flash sales, one-time offers and clearance sales
  • Discounts, special promotions and loyalty rewards
  • New arrivals, unique items and trendsetters

Ecommerce newsletters that deliver value to the reader have strong open rates. The chart below, courtesy of Smart Insights, shows that well written and visually appealing newsletters can gain an open rate of as much as 16.75% with a click-through rate as high as 2.32%.

Personalize Introductions

People are personal. In a world of social commerce personalization, you need to also take that next step with your email to gain traction.

To do so, you’ll want to be aware of these pertinent email personalization statistics for 2018:

  • 8% increased open rate when emails are personalized
  • 26% increase in traction and lift
  • 14% improvement in click-through ratios
  • 600% increase in sales uplift
  • 74% increase in customer engagement
  • 760% increase in revenue from segmented campaigns
  • 56% increase in customer satisfaction

Personalizing your email introductions isn’t hard. It’s easy, provided you have the proper tools. Campaign Monitor provides several helpful tips in a related guide, but it all comes down to the data that you have on file.

When people sign-up and subscribe to your ecommerce newsletter, you should make sure your forms are collecting data including: Email Address, First and Last Name, Birthday and optional Phone Number and Mailing Address.

You can then use this data by sorting it in a CSV that you later upload to your email marketing services provider. For example, you could sort all birthdays into date-segmented categories and use this data to push out highly personalized birthday greetings that are sent out every day to a targeted list, which can result in a massive sales uplift by simply telling them “happy birthday” and offering them a special deal for the day.

Simple personalization tactics like this will go a long way in giving you a means to advertise to your existing and new customer base year-round. You can take things a step further by automating personalized emails to go out daily to segmented lists like these—as well as to cart abandoners—namely because they have been shown to increase sales uplift by as much as 760%.

Make it Visually Creative

One of the most important elements of a strong ecommerce newsletter is its visual appeal. In some cases, you don’t need to reach that far to grab a visual appeal that will encourage open rates and sales uplift.

Take this beautifully designed newsletter by retailer J. Crew (below).  It features a multilayered ice cream cone (because who doesn’t like ice cream) and encourages scrolling to get the full visual flavor, with a convenient and top-located button for you to click-through and get to shopping.

Newsletters such as these prove that you don’t necessarily have to feature the products you’re offering in the initial newsletter, but that you can also rely on thought-provoking visual appeal to get engagement. If the reader is already familiar with your brand—and they should be because they opted-in—it’s a great way to increase your click-through ratio.

A report by Neil Patel—widely considered a preeminent expert in digital marketing—finds that emails with images get an increased click-through rate of almost 43%, helping us drive home this point: Use visually appealing, creative images in your email and enjoy better engagement across the board.

Create a Sense of Urgency

What good is sending an ecommerce newsletter if nobody is opening it? To counter this common dilemma, make sure you create a sense of urgency with your subject line.

Using verbiage such as “Act Fast” or “Only 3 Days Left to Get These Deals” are both great examples of urgency. As Mail Designer 365 suggests, you can also use examples of scarcity, such as “We’re Almost Sold Out!” or “Just 5 More Of These Amazing Handbags Are Left!”

Think about it. Without a sense of urgency, you’re just another email in the inbox. But with the proper wording, you can attract consumers who already have opted-in and are interested in your products and services. Doing so via segmented campaigns, as noted above, can result in an incredible click-through rate and sales uplift.

Ask for Social Shares

Social media powers personalization these days and is one of the most powerful marketing weapons ever created. More than 85% of consumers use social media to find buying recommendations, with 25% of them relying on social networks to gain advice on apparel shopping. If you’re not featuring social sharing buttons in your ecommerce newsletters, you’re missing out on click-throughs, engagement and sales uplift. Period.

But by how much?

Well, a report by Social Fresh finds that by simply adding prominent social sharing buttons to your newsletters, you can increase click-throughs by as much as 150%.

Can social sharing buttons look cool in your email newsletters?

Certainly. But you’ll want to design them to be pleasing to the eye and to fit into the template you’re using seamlessly.

As you can see from the example of online retailer Wool Gang (below), they’re following all the rules of engagement. Their email newsletter is visually appealing; it creates a sense of urgency; it offers a deal; it is attractive and seamless to their website design; and it effortlessly incorporates social sharing along the way.

For even more inspiration, check out this awesome newsletter that encourages social sharing from Navabi (below):

Offer Them a Deal

Everybody likes being offered a great deal. Our recent report on 2018 Promo Code Statistics finds that more than 20 billion digital coupons were redeemed by consumers last year alone. A related Technology Advice survey reveals that one of the leading reasons consumers open emails is because they want to be offered a discount or a special.

It’s a no-brainer! Offering a unique value proposition (aka. A great deal just for opening the newsletter) is the surest way to increase engagement, click-throughs and sales uplift. Getting people to sign-up to your newsletter is as simple as making them aware that there’s an immediate benefit to doing so. Just take the example from Logo (below), which promises a 20% savings on a new purchase for gaining the subscriber.

Follow up on that promise of a good deal when you send newsletters to customers who have opted-in. Use this simple logic: A customer opts-in to get a one-time deal or discount on a purchase; that same customer will also click-through to your marketing email if a similar discount is offered for that action. The Public Desire example (below) gives you a great visual reference for how you can work deals into every email marketing message you send out.

Time to Get to Work!

Now that you’re armed with some hard-hitting facts and proven methods you can use to improve engagement rates, it’s time to get to work on putting them into motion. Along the way, don’t forget to incorporate an ecommerce CRM solution (hint-hint: ReadyCloud CRM integrates with MailChimp and Constant Contact), so you can make the most of your segmented lists and marketing data.

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