It’s the busiest online shopping season of the year and solid eCommerce email marketing can make all the difference. With countless online retailers vying for your customers’ attention, you need to be strategic about your messaging to achieve optimal results. Pay close attention to these five factors in your messaging for an explosive fourth quarter.
eCommerce Email Marketing for the Holiday Season
Attention-grabbing subject lines
Converting the coveted click-through
Shift the focus to gifting
Discounts and Deals
Utilize the tools your platform provides
1. Attention-grabbing subject lines
Don’t think that your newsletter will be the only one in subscribers’ promotion inboxes. This time of year, online shopping is huge, and the eCommerce email marketing competition is fierce. Use your subject lines and preview text to get attention, entertain, and entice potential customers to click through. By using humor, urgency, and specifically pointing out the value of the email’s content, you’re more likely to achieve a higher open rate.
At the same time, make sure your messaging doesn’t come across as spammy. Email marketing software like Active Campaign offers spam checks as you build your emails, looking at your subject lines to see if they are likely to get targeted by spam filters. In general, avoid large block caps text in your subjects lines (HUGE SALE) and excessive use of exclamation points, i.e. Click to BUY NOW!!!
2. Converting the coveted click-through
Big brands and businesses will be serving up competitive discounts throughout the season, so your newsletter copy really matters here. While it’s great to highlight a product, pay extra close attention to how you frame your message. By highlighting what makes your products unique, you can remind customers of their inherent value, compared to other retailers.
Another great technique to use this time of year is writing blog posts and guides. Let’s say that you run an online home decor boutique. Blogging about modern holiday decorating allows you to show off your expertise while plugging your exclusive products. Gift guides allow you to highlight your own top sellers, as well as brands that you’ve partnered with. Speaking of gifts, the holidays are a great excuse to target your messaging to the specific time of year.
3. Shift the focus to gifting
It’s not uncommon for small businesses to talk about holiday cheer, and even offer seasonal sales, but drop the ball on a key messaging element when it comes to eCommerce email marketing. The focus of your email should shift to gifting, rather than simply buying. It’s a small tweak with major consequences.
Throughout most of the year, we’re primarily shopping for ourselves. We don’t necessarily think about what other people might want, because we’re responsible for fulfilling our own needs. But, at the holidays, this changes, and when a product transforms into a gift, the number of possible recipients rises exponentially.
Remember: there’s no need to throw the baby out with bathwater. Offering BOGO discounts allow customers to buy a gift and get a little something for themselves as well.
4. Discounts and Deals
We’ve talked about the ups and downs of offering deals and discounts in the past, and the holidays are a perfectly appropriate and effective time to use them. Use special offers to appeal to customers, and set time limits to create a sense of urgency and increase conversions.
If you’re worried that not enough customers will be able to act in time, don’t worry. You can always create another sale in the holiday season, or offer a different type of savings. Free shipping at the beginning of December, for example, can drive sales, while ensuring that packages will arrive well before the holiday.
5. Utilize the tools your platform provides
Most businesses increase their outreach this time of year, and it’s a good strategy to rake in extra holiday sales. However, if you take advantage of the tools your platform offers, you’ll have something equally valuable as you begin the new year: cold, hard data.
Make sure that all of your tracking and testing options are live, so you can reflect on this season, heading into 2019, and use it to have an even better holiday season next year.
This is a great time to build your email list a grow your repeat business in the new year. Make sure to capture emails at checkout, or consider offering a discount to customers that sign up for your email list, as in this example from Kirkland: