How Email Marketing Automation Can Transform Your Customers' eCommerce Journey: Part Two

Perry Pearcey Headshot

Perry Pearcey

18th November 2020

In part one, we looked at how segmentation can help to change the customer journey by ensuring that your audience is getting relevant information and content delivered to them as they undertake their epic journey towards destiny - well, towards a purchase and beyond.

In this instalment, we’ll be looking at how automated triggers can be used to deliver the right marketing at just the right time, whether they're elves, hobbits, wizards or just plain old humans!

Trigger marketing based on customer behaviour

Behavioural trigger emails are emails which are sent when customers perform certain actions throughout their journey, which could be something like:

  • Cart abandonment
  • Product page visit
  • Email engagement
  • Product purchase

Each of these trigger points can be used to send timely, content-aware emails to customers to help you to convert to a sale. 

Cart abandonment

In March 2020, 88% of all online shopping orders were abandoned. That’s a lot of lost sales, but also a lot of opportunities to follow up abandoned carts with an automated email and to claw that sale back from the brink. 

“Not all those who wander are lost” - Bilbo Baggins

If you have the data to send to customers who have abandoned their cart then a simple “we see you abandoned your item, are you no longer interested?” email could be the thing to remind them to come back and purchase. However, you couldn’t possibly do this manually with 88% of your online sales, so automation is the only feasible way for you to be able to handle this. 

Product page visit

If customers are visiting your site then it’s useful to know the journey that they’re taking when they’re in there. If you know that they’ve been spending lots of time browsing specific products or even just visited your ‘Offers’ page, then you need to be able to send them automated emails based on this behaviour.  

If they’ve looked at several types of running shoe then it’s a safe bet that they’re in the market for some new running shoes. A product page trigger email would contain information such as other types of similar product, any offers on similar products, or maybe even reviews around that product. A survey by Accenture shows that 91% of consumers are more likely to shop with brands who recognise, remember, and provide them with relevant offers and recommendations, so you can be as granular as you can, limited only by the data and content that you hold, and the more personalised it is the better chance you have of converting.

It’s worth remembering that no one wants to feel like they’re being stalked when they’re online, so when automating trigger emails for product pages we advise you set your automation to send no sooner than a couple of hours after the trigger is hit.

Email engagement

Email engagement is a great sign (of course) for email marketing, as it shows that people are invested in what you’re sending to them. This is going to make your life as an eCommerce retailer all the easier as it will help you to further segment and automate content to these customers going forward. 

The simplest way to automate based on email engagement is to send further emails depending on how a person interacts with your email. If they’re continuously engaging with the emails that you’re sharing by opening and clicking content within it, then you can look at pushing them to purchase earlier or look at cross/up-selling products. If, however, they’re engaging lightly or not at all then you should look at the content that you’re sharing. Perhaps there’s not enough information in there, or you’re not showing them the right offers that they need to know it’s worth purchasing.  Below takes a look at a simple customer journey for our friendly, ring-bearing hobbit, and how different levels of engagement should influence the content that is delivered to them.

Depending on how sophisticated you want to go and the tools you have available with your automation, you could even look at things like if they’ve engaged with video links in your emails, which could mean it’s likely that these users will engage with video in future. Consider setting up content-medium segments in your CRM which looks at what content customers engage with. 

Product purchase

This is one of the simplest triggers that you can automate and can be one of the most useful. A thank you or welcome email can make someone feel like they’re part of your brand family, and these can also be used to send information on products which will complement those they’ve bought or point them to useful content on your site which can support them with their product.

If your website includes lots of information about after-care for suede shoes, then whenever a customer purchases a suede shoe ensure that your email automation is set to deliver links in emails to these relevant pages. This will in turn will ensure that these customers keep coming back to your site, therefore keeping you at the front of their mind for consideration on their next purchase. 

If they’re a customer who has purchased enough things that your CRM moves them from the new customer into long term customer segments, then you should consider having your automation platform email then with the offer to review you as a company, with links to your social media or review platforms. You know they’re invested in your products, and 88% of people trust online reviews as much as they do in person, so leveraging this loyalty is going to be a huge boost to your business. 

The board is set, the pieces are moving...

Automating your marketing doesn’t mean that it loses that personal touch - it’s actually quite the opposite. Because you know that you’re hitting the right customers with the right message, you should be assured that you are delivering a more optimised and useful customer journey than ever.

In the last piece of this series, we look at automating your customer lifecycle marketing, and helping to keep them loyal to your brand and coming back again and again.

“Despair is only for those who see the end beyond all doubt. We do not.” - Gandalf

It may seem like a daunting task to bring it all together, but we’re here to help. If you need any support with your marketing automation then we have expert strategists at SilverDisc who can help you to grow your business. 

Contact us for more information. 


Free eBook For Online Retailers

Download our Navigating the Biggest Challenges for Online Retailers eBook now for insights into AI and Machine Learning, Personalisation, Automation, Voice Search, Big Data and more.

Download eBook

Like What You've Read?

Subscribe to our monthly newsletter to receive our latest blog posts and our take on the latest online marketing news