So, you got their email.

Maybe you stopped customers in their tracks with a clever exit popup.

Managed to grab the address before they abandoned the shopping cart.

Or perhaps you’ve had it for long, possibly since their last purchase from your store.

Yet you don’t do anything with it, right?

From time to time you send a blast email to your list announcing an offer or a sale. For the rest of the time, you’re just too busy.

But did you know that you could automate email marketing to ensure you move customers from signup to conversion, all on autopilot?

That’s what I’m going to discuss in this post. I’ll show you 3 Ecommerce drip campaigns you should set up for your store.

Intrigued? Let’s get cracking then.

A Quick Recap – What Are Drip Campaigns

Fact:

Drip campaigns and marketing automation have become the most popular and effective marketing strategies today.

And rightly so.

But before we discuss how you could use them in Ecommerce, let me go over some terminology first, in case if this stuff is new to you. Knowing these definitions will help you get the most of this guide.

Drip campaign (alternatively called drip marketing) – a sequence of pre-defined emails, sent to everyone on your mailing list on a specific schedule. The sequence never changes, meaning that anyone added to the list will receive the same emails as anybody else, in the same order.

Marketing automation – an automated email campaign that’s triggered by a subscriber’s actions. Unlike a drip campaign, marketing automation doesn’t follow the same sequence but changes depending on what a person does with the messages you sent them.

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(a diagram showing a sample animation. By ActiveCampaign)

Both strategies deliver incredible results. And although many people associate drip campaigns with B2B marketing, they deliver equally powerful benefits in ecommerce.

A properly set drip campaign will help you nurture new customers, keep them informed about your brand, educate potential customers about your product, and keep your company visible to them until they’re ready to buy.

And here are three strategies you should implement to achieve that for your store.

#1. Upsell Drip Campaigns

You know:

There’s a lot more in the ecommerce customer’s buying process than just seeking lower price or a better deal.

Many customers indeed shop on price. But equally as many focus on other factors, like product features. And you can convince them to purchase a higher priced item by making the case for buying it.

How? Yup, you guessed it. By sending them an automated drip campaign that will get them thinking about a more advanced product model.

Upsell drip campaign targets specific customer behavior, like reviewing particular products or even adding them to the cart and tries to entice them to change their mind for a bigger item.

Just consider this scenario.

A person considers which home cinema system to buy. They review different models you offer through the store but still can’t make up their mind.

Eventually, they add one to the cart… and leave, most likely to think about it later.

Their behavior should act as a trigger to your email system, which would them initiate an email sequence to convince them to a higher model.

It would send the person emails with case studies, customer stories, technical facts or anything else that would convince a person to upgrade.

Amazon often uses this strategy by monitoring your search behavior on the site.

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Naturally, this sequence wouldn’t work on an accidental customer. But anyone already engaged with your store, and who has purchased before would make a great target for this campaign.

#2. Cross-Sell Drip Campaigns

A typical cross-selling strategy targets people who have purchased a specific item offering products that complement their purchase.

I’m sure you already use cross-selling in your store, for example, by featuring related items on product pages.

crosssell

However, unlike your ecommerce system, which I’m sure automatically picks products to highlight based on their relevance to the main item, a cross-selling drip campaign will require some manual work from you.

First, you’ll need to analyze your customers’ past purchases to identify patterns in purchases. Did customers who bought one item, also went back to buy another?

Then, set a drip campaign based on these patterns, which will automatically send a sequence with related items once a customer purchases the core product.

How would such a campaign look like?

For example, you could start it off with a recommendation. Then follow it with customer testimonial, case study how using both products together help achieve a greater benefit, and offer social proof (i.e. a case study) to convince a person to purchase it too.

#3. Shopping Cart Abandonment Recovery

You see it over and over again in your store’s data:

Customers add products to the cart, only to abandon it before completing the purchase.

The fact that for the last four years, shopping cart abandonment remained at a constant 68% serves as little consolation. After all, according to eMarketer, in 2015 customers bought goods worth $1.5 trillion online (estimated) and left nearly $5 trillion in abandoned shopping carts!

But here’s the catch…not all abandoned shopping carts are lost forever.

In fact, a clever email drip campaign could help you recover up to 29% of abandoned transactions.

And here’s a quick overview of how such drip campaign should look like.

The first email should go to the customer within 30 minutes after leaving the site.

As Marketingsherpa points:

“Waiting for more than an hour to send an email in response to an abandoned shopping cart can harm your results. “

Why? Because by then the customer has either already forgotten about their purchase or has purchased those items elsewhere.

That first email could include two things:

  • Information about what a person has abandoned. Since you don’t know why they left the site, you could assume that they might still be interested in buying.
  • A more customer-service centered message trying to find out why they abandoned the purchase and offering to help. The email should also include a way for them to get back to the site to complete the purchase.

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(image source)

If a customer still doesn’t complete their purchase, send them a discount within the first 24 hours of the abandonment.

Let’s face it:

Price is the key differentiator in ecommerce today.

Many shoppers become price-conscious, resulting in unwillingness to buy unless they receive a discount or other offer.

Heck, many deliberately wait, expecting a store to offer them one. And will only buy from those that comply with this expectation.

To target those abandoners, issue a small discount and send it to them within a day of the abandoned purchase.

This way you stand a chance to get them before they receive a similar offer from another store they left before buying.

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The third email should offer a slightly larger discount

However, this should be the very last email you send.

You’ve already offered a discount; you’re topping it up with another one, but being honest, your chances of recovering that cart have dropped significantly.

First, many of abandoners who haven’t come back to buy have already bought somewhere else.

Others keep waiting for higher and higher discounts.

So make your final offer but if a person doesn’t take you up on it, move on.

What do you think?

Have you set up any drip campaigns for your store? Or are you thinking of launching any specific campaign? Let us know in the comments.

  • Pawel Grabowski