Darren Baldwin is an eCommerce marketer that knows how to build a successful business with very little. When he joined Dungarees.net, they were still managing products and inventory with Excel spreadsheets. Today, they are an Internet Retailer Top 1000 company.
Abandoned Cart / Abandoned Checkout Email
I first met Darren a few years ago at a Bronto Summit where he was giving a presentation on shopping cart abandonment. One of the things we discuss in his interview is how shoppers are starting to expect an email when they abandon an eCommerce checkout process — so much so that many are abandoning on purpose because they expect a coupon in that follow-up email.
What happens when you train your customers to wait for a coupon? Should you give a discount right away or wait until a later email in the abandoned cart series? Should you offer a discount at all?
If you train your customers to always expect a coupon, you had better have good margins built-in, because they will likely hold off purchases until they receive a discount or go elsewhere to buy.
A typical abandoned cart / abandoned checkout email series looks something like this:
- Email within an hour after abandoning
- Email 24 hours after abandoning – There’s a good chance your customer will be online at the same time the next day
- Email 1 week after abandoning
You should experiment to see what timing works best for you. Darren mentioned that his team is experimenting with how soon to send the email after abandoning. Try waiting until the third email in the series before offering a discount.
Use the first message to emphasize value and urgency. This would include things like Free Shipping, Hassle-free Returns and Limited Quantity.
Use the second message to make them comfortable with your company. Talk about the quality of your customer service and your reputation as a business. This would also be a good place for a few testimonials.
The idea is to get your customer to see the value they get from buying from your company. Make it so they don’t want to go anywhere else to make their purchase.
And don’t just regurgitate the shopping basket by giving them a little product thumbnail picture, description and pricing information. Yes, you want to include a picture of the product and name, but it’s more about the value of purchasing from you than it is about the price of the product.
Email List Hygiene
Darren also gave a presentation about keeping your email list clean at another Bronto Summit. When I was managing large email lists, I found that 45-60% of list members were what I consider active. They had opened at least 1 email in the last X number of messages I sent to them. The ‘X’ will depend on how frequently you send messages.
- Cost – you are paying to send email marketing messages to people who don’t want to see them. Identifying and removing inactive users could cut your email marketing costs in half
- Deliverability – I’ve mentioned this in previous episodes, but Gmail, Yahoo!mail, Hotmail, AOL … all the big email companies know when their users aren’t opening messages you send to them. When they see a high number of unopened messages, they start delivering your email to the users’ spam folders … even the ones who DO open your messages regularly. Eventually they stop delivering altogether.
What can you do about it?
- Re-engagement – A re-engagement campaign typically consists of a series of emails with subject lines like, “We Miss You!” The idea is to get the customer to take an action that lets you know they are still interested in receiving your email. People like to feel like part of the “club” and you’d be surprised how quickly they respond when you threaten to “kick them out”. They’ll often start paying attention to your messages again to be a part of that club and avoid the threat of getting kicked out again. Just make sure you’re giving them good content. For those who don’t respond to your re-engagement campaign …
- Clean your email list – I like to create lists or segments to separate the inactive users from the active ones. Call it separation anxiety if you want, I just don’t like removing anyone from my lists unless they request it. The truth is, most of the people that make it to my inactive lists never come off.
If you have a question about digital marketing for me or a future guest, let us know at https://bjsmith.co/ask.
Digital Marketing News Stories
Twitter Announces Objective-Based Ad Campaigns
According to Twitter Senior Product Manager Christine Lee, “This will make it easier for advertisers to create and optimize successful marketing campaigns — and pay only for the actions that are aligned with their marketing objectives.”
There’s a new workflow based on your campaign objectives. It starts you off with the statement, “I want more…” Followed by five options:
- Website clicks or conversions
- Tweet engagements
- App installs or app engagements
- Leads on Twitter
You pay based on objective. They have also added tools to make it easier to create ads, including an image cropper with drag-and-drop capability so you can easily customize photos.
Use HTTPS to Improve Organic Rankings in Google
According to eCommerce Times, if you don’t have a secure site license, you might want to get on that. On Wednesday, Google announced that it has begun factoring websites’ use of HTTPS into its search rankings, resulting in more favorable results for those that use it. Google wants a safer internet and it will push it by rewarding those with secure sites and punishing those that do not.
In their own words, “we’d like to encourage all website owners to switch from HTTP to HTTPS to keep everyone safe on the Web.”
It’s a small boost today, but you could be looking at falling in the SEO rankings significantly in the future without it.
Connect with Darren
- Twitter: @ECommDarren
- LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/darren-baldwin/9/411/82b
- Book: One Click: Jeff Bezos and the Rise of Amazon.com by Richard L. Brandt
- Time-Saving Tool: Workflow Designer
- Video Tools: Wistia
- Project Management: Wrike
- Live Chat System: Boldchat
- Conference: Internet Retailer Convention & Exchange
- Conference: Bronto Summit
- Ken Magill – The Magill Report
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