How email activation can work for you
You work hard to build a customer list. This allows you to reach customers with sales information, news, and promotions that will draw them back to your business. Although you add new people to your email list each day, the truth is that over time, some of your customers may lose interest or change their email addresses. What can you do to re-engage these shoppers and get them back in your store?
One solution is to use email reactivation, a marketing tool. If you use an email service such as Constant Contact(r), or Mailchimp (r), you may already have automation features working for you. An automated email is sent to the person who first signs up to join your email list. It serves two purposes: to confirm their entry and to welcome them to your company. This message can be controlled just like you can create additional automated messages based upon shopper activity or inactivity.
Although it may seem counterintuitive at first, part of activating your email list is removing people who are not worth your time and energy. The net result could be that your total email list becomes smaller than you started. Although it sounds absurd, this is the reality. If your email list is 8,000 but only 5,000 people are opening and clicking on your messages regularly, you will need to identify those 3,000 “inactives” and get them to reengage. You can expect them to respond if they do, but it’s time to get rid of them. It’s better for you to send your message out to 6,500 people engaged than to 8,000 people 1,500 of whom aren’t really reading it or interfacing with you in any way. Your email metrics will rise and your fees could decrease based on how you use your email service.
Identifying Inactive Mails
First, isolate people who aren’t responding to your emails in any meaningful way. This isn’t a one-size-fits all approach. Your jewelry store may be different than the shoe shop across the street. Consider the purchasing habits of your customers. Is your average customer coming into your store once a month? Are they coming in every few months? Are they buying a large ticket item only once a year? The answer to your question will help you decide if someone hasn’t received an email in 2 months is a sign they aren’t shopping regularly or if they haven’t opened an e-mail in 6 months. This is normal since your average customer comes in once a year.
Once you’ve established your timeframe, go to your email history reports. Segment out those who haven’t opened an email for X months. (Ask from above). This is your target audience.
What are you saying?
Once you have identified these people, it is time to reach out to them in order to try to get their attention again. A simple email message with the subject “We Want You back!” and a 20% discount coupon in its body can make a huge impact on people returning to your store or your website. You don’t have to use coupons or a promotion to get people to return to your store. Instead, send an email with a direct message saying: “If you don’t respond by X date (clickable hyperlink), we will remove you!” You can also create a survey to ask general questions. There are many websites that offer simple survey services. You might find some useful feedback to help improve your product or customer service.
What am I doing?
After you have completed this process once, you will be able to see the impact it can have on your email campaigns and your bottom line. It doesn’t necessarily mean that you can do it every time. It is a good business practice to go through your email list at least twice per year. You can also automate this process on large scale. After you have created your reactivation campaign, you can program your email provider to generate the reactivation email based on an email subscriber’s inactivity. You will find that you are constantly removing people who aren’t the best prospects. However, it is possible to engage with your ideal customers and get strong feedback.
Study Reveals Smartphones’ Impact on Retail Shopping
Today’s consumers are not without their phones at all times, even when they are in-store. Retailers of all sizes need an omnichannel strategy to reach consumers and build relationships, as mobile is increasing in sales.
SessionMRecently, we conducted a survey of over 5,000 retail customers to get a better understanding of how shoppers shop for retail products, how smartphones influence and influence their decision-making, and what future plans they have for smartphones.Three key findings
1. Retail shoppers often use their smartphones to enhance their in-store shopping experience.
Although there are concerns that people are moving away from brick-and mortar for online shopping, SessionM’s survey revealed a slight rise in brick-and–mortar purchases in the last three month, at 74.1%, compared to 72.7% in 2015. However, 49.4% of respondents to SessionM’s 2016 survey believe that shopping in-store is a better experience than online. This compares with 52.6% in 2015.
This could explain why a growing number of people shop with smartphones. Retail shoppers reported that 93.2% used their smartphones to shop. Comparing prices (53.7%), searching for product information (49.3%), and looking online for reviews (42.6%) were the most common uses.
Retailers have the good news that online shopping is creating massive amounts of data about their customers. This data can be combined with artificial intelligence technology to tailor content for a brand to what appeals to the customer and ultimately to a sale.
2. Brands who deliver highly-personalized content will be rewarded with loyalty.
Shoppers are increasingly looking for a more interactive, real-time shopping experience. This can be achieved by receiving relevant offers through triggered messaging. According to 63.3%, they are more likely than others to shop with a retailer if they get relevant incentives and personalized engagements, such as push notifications or messages, while they’re shopping.
Personalization is more than content marketing. Consumers are looking for rewarding loyalty programs that reward them with engaging and meaningful experiences. A staggering 78.3% of respondents (compared to 76.6% in 2015), said that they would shop more at retailers where they could earn points for future purchases. This is a clear indication of the importance of loyalty programs. But not all loyalty programs are created equal. Loyalty programs should be tailored to customers’ needs based on their preferences, frequency, and spend.
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3. Mobile shopping is on the rise.
Smartphones are becoming more popular than just being used for in-store shopping. Mobile is also becoming a popular channel to make retail purchases. Respondents reported that mobile shopping frequency has increased by 46.4% over the previous year, and 17.3% said they make retail purchases more frequently than last year. Retailers need to provide better-optimized, simpler and more consistent mobile shopping experiences that allow them to capitalize on this shift.
Smartphones are having a greater impact on how people shop online and offline for products. Mobile is used by people to make informed purchases and expect consistent communications and shopping experiences on all channels. Retailers have a great opportunity to use the data from smartphones to connect offline and online channels and engage customers. If you deliver on this experience, customers will convert to loyal customers.