It’s very easy to make a mistake of overlooking the importance of post-purchase customer emails and fall in the trap of using a default (what I call – “boring”) email sequence. Customers are most likely to engage with you post-purchase and offering a sloppy experience will only turn them away (and to your competitors… Eek!). Not to mention post-purchase emails statistically perform exceptionally well with open rates and CTRs well above the industry standard so, failing to recognize the opportunity here, is a big miss.
What to avoid
Yes, your marketing efforts have been rewarded with a new order placed and that’s great! But changing your attitude towards a customer after they press the “buy” button and stop engaging just works against your retention strategy (we hope you have one), and you see the problem here is taking an “easy-way-out”, by using whatever was already there and thinking that it’s “good enough” for your customers.
Well, it’s not, and honestly, if I were you I’d shun away from those boilerplate email templates that come with most e-commerce platforms these days, whether it will be Shopify or WooCommerce.
The reason is very simple, those emails normally:
- Lack brand personality
- Are visually dull and uninviting
- Marketing dead end ( no CTAs for further brand interaction)
Yes, it gets the message across but that’s all there is to it.
Much to those merchant’s chagrin and to ours (but mostly theirs), slapping their online shop logo doesn’t help much in that department.
What to do instead
Customers are excited after placing an order and the best way to return the favor is by making the experience transparent and stress-free. Post-purchase “experience gap” – the period from placing an order to getting the package – gets tricky for most retailers, because they fail to engage customers in a meaningful manner. Sending a relevant and engaging content along with the order information keeps customers informed about their shipment while your retention efforts are being amplified (remember those emails get the most engagement), killing two birds with one shot, huh? Yep! but remember to be customer centric, every email should be about your customer and just a little bit about you 🙂 Moving on…
These are the 5 most important emails you can send to a customer post-purchase. Now, you might ask why those emails are all built around the shipment status updates. Well, we want to send only relevant information which will convert & these emails are satisfying the customer pain-points at the right time, keep reading..
So, lets quickly dissect each of those emails to identify the components that makes them great.
Order Confirmation Email (GROUPON)
First off, thanking the customer and calling them “awesome” opens up the email with positive and upbeat tone. Secondly, before I even scroll down the CTA button is right there and if that’s what I’m looking for, then I’m done. The email continues to prioritize the information from what I will most likely find useful (Billing & order info) to relevant marketing placements towards the bottom. Notice the fine balance between the relevant content and marketing calls to action.
Your Item was dispatched (ASOS)
Simple and to the point, cuts the bullshit & gives the most important information in the title, followed by CTA button which redirects customer back on-site to browse detailed shipment history and estimated delivery date. I never like retailers who toss you a tracking code and make you do all the work. However, this is a great way to provide smooth customer experiences even post-purchase. Worth noting that the customer is only exposed to ASOS brand and therefore only to their CTAs while getting the most valuable information.
Your Package is In-Transit (Skullcandy)
Very similar scenario to ASOS email, minimal amount of content and most important information is present. Subtle touch at the bottom for rating the service or sharing the content on social media. Sometimes issues arise with shipments (they are delayed, or maybe courier brings it when you are not home and leaves it at your door ) and its great not having to call up the online shop or some third-party logistics companies.
Your package is out for delivery (Lululemon)
Those emails usually start with something like – “UPS local courier has grabbed your package and will be with you in few hours”. Few logistics companies will call you up in advance and make arrangements on when and where to hand you your package, but if that’s not the case, then “Out for delivery” emails are nonetheless effective.
Your package is successfully Delivered (ARDENE)
Could be a hard sell trying to get a new customer place a second order right after the first (especially if the shipment is still on its way) however smoothing out the post-purchase experience and having the customer leave your website with positive thoughts in mind, is a big step towards the second purchase. Offering coupon codes and special offers based on one’s purchase surely is a great transition to having a customer through the checkout cycle once again.
Having active and engaged customers is the best strategy for retailers if they want to enjoy sustainable long-term growth as an eCommerce business. First impressions are important and so is the moment new customer places an order. You can either nurture them to a repeat customer or alienate them by losing your focus.
Hopefully those emails jogged your memory on how important it is to invest time and effort in creating a seamless post-purchase experience aimed at keeping customers in the know every step of the way – engaged & shopping.