Email is the most powerful marketing channel of the 21st century. In fact, email is so powerful that the Direct Marketing Association says that you can get a return on investment (ROI) of $38 for every $1 you invest in email marketing. Similarly, research shows that email is responsible for driving 25.1 percent of all Black Friday sales in 2015, compared to just 1.6 percent of sales from social media.
If you want to get results from email marketing, though, you need to change your approach. The following are some very little tweaks you can make to your email marketing that will give you a massive boost in revenue:
1. Create and execute an “abandoned cart” follow up strategy
One of the toughest realities you have to face as an online business is that a huge — and I mean HUGE — portion of people will go through your sales process, from their first visit to your website right to the checkout, and then drop off.
Data from Baymard, which is based on 34 different cart abandonment studies, found that a whopping 68.81 percent of people abandon carts. That's 68 sales out of 100 that disappear at the final step.
Of course, there are many reasons why people abandon carts, but you can use email to recoup some of these sales.
Radley London recovered 7.9 percent of lost sales simply by sending cart abandonment emails. Boot Barn generated a 12 percent lift in recaptured revenue by using email to remarket to cart abandoners.
Devise a means of conducting email follow up with cart abandoners and consider integrating one of these email marketing systems with your checkout system to make following up easy.
2. Email cross-selling and upselling
How much is cross-selling worth to your business? For e-commerce giant Amazon, cross-selling was worth $37.45 billion in 2015 — a whopping 35 percent of their revenue.
Amazon’s recommendation engine is one of the most effective cross-selling systems in the world, but very few people know that email is the most powerful ingredient of this recommendation engine.
Experts reveal that conversion to sales from Amazon’s on-site recommendation could be as high as 60 percent, but the conversion is much higher with email. Play it like Amazon and integrate email into your cross-selling and upselling efforts, both in introducing offers and in following up on those offers.
3. Segment your email list and avoid using the batch-and-blast approach
Here are two of the most common approaches to email marketing:
The batch-and-blast approach, in which everybody is lumped into one category and emailed.
The segmented approach, in which subscribers are segmented based on interest and other relevant information.
Which of the two approaches do you think is more effective? Well, let’s consult research again: According to a study conducted by Marketing Sherpa, segmenting emails can boost email conversion rates by up to 208 percent.
You can segment by gender, age bracket, interests, activity on your site, purchase behavior, interaction with your site or a host of other categories. The more personalized and segmented your emails are, though, the better.
4. Optimize the timing of your emails
Research shows that there is a best time and day to send emails depending on your goals. Here are some quick facts based on some reliable sources:
The best time to send an email is between 10 and 11 a.m.
The best weekday to send emails for high transactions is Monday, and the best weekend day is Sunday.
The best day to send emails ro high open rates and clickthrough rates is Tuesday.
It is essential to also consider the role the time of your audience plays; the timezone of California is different from that of Florida, and that of Florida is different from that of Berlin. So, it is essential to identify where your audience is mainly based, and then use that knowledge to optimize your emails.
5. Embrace full-on email automation
All things being equal, most of what I recommended above can be done with automation.
Most email services let you automate email timing, making it possible to send emails to different people at different times based on their time zone. They let you split test various elements of emails. They let you configure your emails in such a way that one event triggers another and the experience is different and personalized for each customer depending on what action they take. You want to familiarize yourself with, and make effective use of, these features.
In fact, some email services like SendPulse are already introducing artificial intelligence for email marketing in a way that does all the above and more. That said, it is important to realize that full-on automation is the future of email marketing. You should look into services like Infusionsoft, Active Campaign, Ontraport and a host of other relevant email service providers; I did a breakdown of the most popular ones here.