Since January of 2017, my ecommerce email campaigns have made me over $9000 in additional revenue for my store. I wanted to share all 5 campaigns I’m running, reveal why they’re working, and share a few templates for you to swipe.
First, I should talk about what I’m sending out and what tools I’m using. For all my ecommerce email campaigns, list building, and email automation for my store, I’m using MailChimp. It’s free for my first 2,000 subscribers, it works nicely with Shopify, and it’s easy to create and design email campaigns. For my abandoned carts, I’m using Abandonment Protector. MailChimp does handle abandon cart emails as well (more on how I use this later) but initially, I used Abandonment Protector and just stuck with it. If I was starting over again, I would use MailChimp for all my email drips and campaigns.
So here’s the ecommerce email campaigns I have setup in my store, as well as what they do and how much they’ve earned me this year. I’m going to dive deep into each of them and share what exactly I’m doing to make these emails work for me, and add additional revenue to my store.
Abandoned cart sequence
The classic abandoned cart email sequence. Every store should have one of these. This drip is sent out to visitors on your store that begin the checkout process but leave before they complete their purchase. Usually they’ll fill out their shipping information, include their email, reach the point where they’re asked for their payment information and leave for whatever reason. The abandoned cart email sequence is one of the best ways to recover these visitors and make them customers.
For my sequence, I send out 3 follow up emails. 1 that goes out almost immediately, 33 minutes after they abandon their cart. The second goes out 24 hours after the first email, and the last email is sent 94 hours after the second email.
This sequence has been my most profitable one, and it has earned me $5618 in revenue. This makes sense considering these emails go out to the warmest leads. These are people who are most likely to make a purchase.
So what are the emails I send out?
The first one, that is sent out 33 minutes after abandon, has the subject line: Your order is NOT on its way!
The full copy of this email is as follows:
Hi Corey, we have reserved your order for you... I can see that you didn't complete your purchase. This item will most likely sell out soon but we have it reserved just for you because you wanted it. We can only hold it under your name for maximum 24 hours. Click on the green button below to complete your purchase. Hurry while you still can 🙂 If there was a problem purchasing this order, just reply to this email and we'll help you out! (product image) Complete your order! (button) You can tell us if you had any problems purchasing. We'll be very happy to help!
The first email’s objective is to add some urgency into the customer’s decision. It’s also to ensure that if the customer had any issues checking out, they could reply to the email and let me know. You’d be surprised how many carts you can save simply be offering to answer any questions or assist customers that don’t know how to complete their purchase.
The next email goes out 24 hours later with the subject line: Corey, here’s 10% off our (product)
I don’t think it’s necessary to hit your customers with a discount in the second email, but for my store it doesn’t hurt. For yours, you might want to hold off on discounts for as long as possible, specifically for the last email. Since it’s been over 24 hours, I’m assuming the visitor didn’t have any problems checking out, they simply changed their mind. My hope here is that a small discount can get the sale.
Hi Corey, We noticed that the purchase you added to your cart is still available! Why not complete your purchase and we'll discount an extra 10% on this sale? Code: (coupon code) For your convenience, we have listed the items you had in your cart below. (product) Price: $(price) Go to your cart (button) If you had trouble checking out or found something confusing, please contact our customer service department by email at support@(email)
94 hours later, I send the last email. The reason I have such a wide gap from the second to third email is that I almost kind of want the customer to forget about me. Maybe they were in a bad mood that day or maybe they didn’t receive their paycheck that week. Whatever the reason, I want to give enough of a buffer to see if I can get the sale when the customer might be in a different mindset or mood. These are human beings we’re sending emails to afterall.
This email’s subject line is: 20% off to Finish Your Order!
This is where I hit them with the big guns and where I recommend you do the same. This is where I would recommend most store owners finally throw out the discount. It could even be as low as 5% off. The important thing here is that you want to close the sale.
Again, urgency is important. 1-day coupons will encourage action.
Hi Corey, Are you ready to complete your order? Enjoy 20% off your entire purchase. This coupon will last one day only! This is the last email you will receive from us! Code: (coupon code) For your convenience, we have listed the items you had in your cart below. (product) Price: $(price) Go to your cart (button) If you had trouble checking out or found something confusing, please contact our customer service department by email at support@(email)
Post-abandoned cart sequence
Imagine if you received 10 abandoned carts a week and every week, you were able to recover half of them. Pretty damn good, right?
But what about the other half? At that rate, we’re building a list of interested/warm customers of 5 a week. Do we just forget about the customers we can’t recover?
Those customers showed intent, but maybe the product they abandoned wasn’t for them. This is where, after the abandoned cart email sequence ends, if they don’t buy, they’re placed on a new ecommerce email campaign that shows them completely different products from the ones they abandoned.
For example, you own a store that sells dress shirts for men. A customer abandons a dress shirt, receives your entire abandoned cart drip and still doesn’t purchase. Instead of giving up, put that email on another list and send them offers for completely different products. Show them products they might not have seen in your store.
My post-abandoned cart sequence is currently 10 emails, each promoting a completely different product than the core offerings and best-selling products on my site. The emails go out every day for 10 days.
Sometimes the reason the customer abandoned the cart was because they changed their mind on the product, not that they changed their mind on buying something. I like this sequence a lot because it makes the most out of my abandoned carts.
First purchase followup drip
This ecommerce email campaign goes out to all customers after their first purchase. The drip is 10 emails that go out every day for 10 days. This sequence sends out a new product every day, from my best sellers list.
The first email asks the customer to buy more of what they already bought. It’s the low-hanging fruit of ecommerce that’s often neglected. Your customer just showed you what they want and instead, we’re tempted to show customers other products they might like. If your customer buys a certain flavor of tea, why not just ask them to buy more of that flavor than recommending others?
The rest of the emails are just recommending best-selling products. I try to tell a story around each product. I also don’t send out any discounts in this sequence.
VIP purchase followup drip
This sequence goes out to customers that are repeat buyers.
I like to award these customers with discounts. The drip for this is very similar to the post-purchase drip with the exception of including coupon codes and discounts. I really like the idea of generating coupons based on the customer’s name (for example: Exclusive 10% just for you Melanie! Use coupon code Melanie-10 at checkout!) or creating a coupon with the code VIP.
I also try to create the appearance of an exclusive club just for repeat buyers. Here’s the copy I send out after the first repeat purchase. The subject for this email is Welcome to the VIP Club.
As a (storename) customer, you’re automatically enrolled in our VIP Club. Using discount code: VIPCLUB you’ll get an additional 10% off all your future purchases just for being a member. We’ve added some great new products this week, here’s a sneak preview. If you have any questions, feel free to personally email us anytime.
Finally, anyone who subscribes to my store’s newsletter, blog, or exit-intent popup, and isn’t already a customer, gets another drip.
This drip is similar to my post-purchase drip in that I recommend the best-selling products, the ones I know that sell, to cold leads. I use discounts and coupon offers to this list since it is a cold audience that hasn’t shown interest in my store with a purchase.
It’s important to note that this is my smallest list. I don’t get many emails from my store’s blog and I have only recently been playing with an exit-intent popup on the cart page of my store.
Summary of key points for my ecommerce email campaigns
- The main tool I use for building my store’s ecommerce email campaigns is MailChimp
- In every drip, except abandoned carts, I send an email every day
- Use urgency: get customers off the fence with timed discounts and copy that highlights urgency
- Use coupons/discounts near the end of drips
- Recommend your best-selling, proven products first
- Follow up with abandoned carts with different products than the one they abandoned
- Create an exclusive experience/club for your best customers
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