Get Your Customers Coming Back

Posted by: kalen Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

WebShopApps is pleased to welcome Kalen Jordan (@kalenjordan) of MageMail for this guest article.

As a Magento merchant, you’re always on the hunt for new ways to bring in new customers and increase sales.  You’re probably putting a lot attention into ways to attract new customers, and may not realize that you have a massive opportunity right under your nose with your existing customer base.

Customer lifecycle email, put simply, is individualized email that’s sent to the right customer at the right time.  You may be doing email newsletter blasts on a monthly or weekly basis, and that’s great – you should continue to do that.

But you can complement that email strategy with targeted emails that will on average have much higher engagement rates, and more importantly, conversion rates.  Triggered lifecycle email tends to have open rates over 60% and a revenue per email rate anywhere from $1.50 to $5 easily.

There’s nothing that surprising about this really – individualized emails that make sense for me, as a customer, are going to be more interesting for me, and I’m going to be more likely to buy.

So what types of emails are we talking about exactly?

Well, abandoned cart emails are a great example that you’re probably already familiar with.  Customers come to your store and begin to checkout, getting far enough that they’ve already given you their email address, but they leave the checkout at some point – why knows why!  Maybe they were comparison shopping, maybe they just got distracted by their daughter wearing a Mailchimp hat – there’s no telling.

But that’s a great moment in that customer’s lifecycle to reach out to them and try to close the deal.  They’ve already come to your site, been interested enough in a product to add it to their cart, and they’ve even given you their email address.

Abandoned cart emails give you an opportunity to overcome some of the objections that they may have to purchasing – maybe they’re worried about price, so a discount could easily close the deal.  Maybe they aren’t sure how good your customer support will be, so reassuring them about your quality support will be very helpful.  Maybe they just needed a simple reminder.

Another example of a great lifecycle email is a product recommendation.  Let’s be honest – all of us in the eCommerce game are trying to do the types of things that Amazon is already doing – and here’s a great example.  You’ve probably received an email recommending cross-sells to you if you’ve ever made a purchase at Amazon.  And they’re based off of the “people who bought X also bought Y” logic.

Having a customer who already made a purchase with you and hasn’t returned it is a fantastic opportunity to sell them on other related products.  Now again, your email newsletters may be doing something similar – introducing new products or highlighted products – but those are being blasted out to all your customers, regardless of their specific interests.

A recommendation email is particularly powerful because you’re recommending products that are closely related to the one they already bought!

One of the concerns that you may have here, particularly if you have a decent-sized catalog, is that you may not want to go through the hassle of manually assigning related products and cross-sells in Magento for your entire catalog.

This is something that I tried to solve with MageMail by automatically generating those related products based simply off of past customer behavior.  So there are lots of options here – but the key is that you want to find a way to recommend highly relevant products to your existing customers.

Well, I hope your appetite is whetted and you’re starting to get the value of targeted lifecycle email.  If you’re interested to learn more about lifecycle email, there’s an email course on seven lifecycle emails that can help to drive revenue which you may be interested in checking out.

Please feel free to post questions in the comments!


About Kalen Jordan

Kalen is a passionate Magento developer living in Pasadena, California with his wife and daughter. As the lead developer for a Magento Enterprise merchant, having previously worked for a Platinum Industry Partner, and as the founder of Magento extension company – he knows (and loves!) the Magento platform deeply.  He was recently listed among the top 12 Magento experts on Twitter, and his responsive email template work was featured by eBay.

Kalen is building MageMail – a customer lifecycle email extension for Magento. Interested in learning more about customer lifecycle email? Get the free email course on 7 lifecycle emails that are guaranteed to increase sales.

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