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With the holiday season just around the corner, it’s time to start thinking about your email marketing campaigns. It’s the perfect time to start engaging with your current subscribers. You can also offer a valuable opt-in, like a discount or a free ebook, to invite new customers or readers to subscribe to your list. The more you engage with your subscribers in a meaningful way, the more likely they are to buy from you. Here are 11 tips to increase holiday sales with email marketing this year.

1) Abandoned cart? Invite buyers back to complete their sales. Sometimes buyers need a little push to complete their purchase with you. Many buyers may check the final cost of a product once shipping is added, then ditch out. Some buyers apply a discount code, fill out their information, then realize the price doesn’t fit their budget right now. Setting up an email for abandoned carts is a great way recover lost sales. With Selz, install the Abandoned Cart app to start inviting buyers back to complete the sale with custom emails. Each email is customizable to your brand, so you can connect with your buyers in a meaningful way.

2) Create appealing and engaging email designs. Your email subscribers are receiving tons of emails every day from businesses. Some businesses may even be just like yours. Stand out with professional designs and clear, engaging imagery. I just love this animated gif from A Beautiful Mess, who were advertising their monthly box subscription:

3) Tailor your order receipts for the holidays. Give your previous buyers a reason to buy from you again using our Custom Receipts app. Include recommended items in your the order receipt as it’s the perfect time to influence your buyers to purchase another item. Include a discount code to make it easy for them to say yes.

4) Send out a simple sales email. Let people know what you’ve got for sale for the holidays. Keep it short and to the point. Add a Call-To-Action (CTA) at the bottom of your email or include clickable images, sending your readers to your online store, sales page, or item listing. Dot & Bo use linked images, sending you to themed product pages:

5) Discounts, Discounts, Discounts! Make your current subscribers feel special with a subscriber-only discount code. Send out an email with the discount code or add an opt-in to your site that gives a percentage off once they join your list. This is a hugely effective way to increase your sales, especially by offering free shipping for any physical products you offer.

6) Give out a free gift. Buyers love getting more than what they paid for. There’s a reason you see bundled products at the store like lotion with a mini lotion for travel. A customer doesn’t need to pay extra for that: it’s your way of saying thank you. Customers are especially tuned into free gifts since it gives them a bigger bang for their buck during the holidays. Consider bundling your digital products into a holiday special package where a buyer gets your latest eBook and a preview of your coming eBook or guide.

7) Hold an 11th hour sale. Some buyers wait until the very last minute to purchase something. Send out an email campaign to your subscribers with a discount that ends that night.

8) Hold a contest. Encourage buyers to purchase from you by offering an awesome prize. If you sell eBooks, consider offering an impressive package to work from you 1-1, plus all your tutorials, and eBooks to anyone who purchases a specific item from your store within a certain time frame.

9) Set up a drip campaign. If you use Mailchimp or another newsletter service, you can set up a drip campaign, which sends out emails to your subscribers over a certain time period. Consider educating your subscribers about your product or how to use your product. Once the campaign nears the holidays, offer a time sensitive discount for your product to encourage sales right after the campaign ends.

10) Send a New Year’s sales email. Send out another email with a discount code or free gift on or near New Year’s day. Here’s a quick email template you can use:

“Thank you for choosing _______! As a small token of gratitude, we’d love to offer you a discount for __________, ___________, or ___________. Use the code _______ when buying _______ in the checkout. Wishing you Happy New Year!”

Feel free to show off your brand’s personality in your writing, too.

11) Don’t forget: Measure your growth. If you decide to offer discount codes, you can track how many customers used those discount codes. By using a different discount code for different segments of customers, you’ll be able to see what works best for your current customers, then rinse and repeat in the future. Do they respond better to % off, a flat $5 or $10 off, or giving your product away for free? You can also measure your growth using our analytics feature for sales made through Selz, giving you insights into where your buyers are coming from in the world. You can also measure your list growth over the holiday season in your email marketing account.

Tapping into the holiday season and increasing your sales is simple with email marketing. The best way to increase sales is to increase your engagement with your buyers, subscribers, and readers. Figure out what works best for your audience and perhaps do a bit of experimenting. Some of your subscribers might respond really well to a direct sales email, while others may want to be educated about your product first with a drip campaign. You can never go wrong with giving discounts because it’s easy to track their effectiveness. Last but not least, with almost 64% of customers abandoning their carts, setting up abandoned cart emails can automatically save you potentially lost sales this holiday season. Which of these tips are you going to implement? Leave us a comment below with any other ideas.

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About the author

Kristen Runvik

Content strategist and holistic herbalist with experience in collaborative content creation and strategy implementation, multidimensional and highly creative content development, ecommerce growth, and medicinal plant, flower, and herb expertise.

Kristen is also the Founder of Lagom Body Co., a multidimensional skincare and lifestyle brand.