If last year was any indication of what the upcoming holiday season will be like for e-commerce companies, it’s going to be record-breaking! In fact, in a recent Forbes survey more consumers (82%) said that they plan to buy online this holiday season rather than in stores (77%). Check out these 8 tips to get your email-marketing campaigns ready to capture consumers’ attention and send your holiday sales soaring.
Email Is the Most Effective Channel for Holiday Marketing Success
Campaigner recently surveyed retailers about holiday marketing, and this is what they found:
- Email was reported as the most effective marketing channel by 66% of respondents, followed by social media (41%) and search engine optimization (20%)
- Of the 66% of respondents who consider email the most effective channel, 59% are anticipating an even better 2017 holiday season than in previous years.
Online-Shopping Insights From the 2016 Holiday Season
As you develop an email-marketing strategy for the upcoming holiday season, consider the following 2016 holiday online-shopping behaviors reported by comScore e-Commerce:
- Cyber Monday was the biggest online shopping day ever, with $1 billion spent on mobile devices alone.
- Total digital sales reached almost $3.7 billion on Cyber Monday, which was up for the seventh year in a row, achieving an annual growth rate of 20%.
- Both mobile and desktop devices demonstrated strong growth rates in 2016, up by 17% and 29%, respectively, compared to the previous year.
- Thanksgiving and Black Friday also had robust sales, up 23% from the previous year, with about $4.7 billion in combined sales.
Important Promotional Dates for the Upcoming Holiday Season
What types of sales and promotions will you offer in your holiday email campaigns? Here are the primary dates to keep in mind as you plan your email campaign calendar for the holidays:
- Nov. 23: Thanksgiving
- Nov. 24: Black Friday
- Nov. 25: Small Business Saturday
- Nov. 27: Cyber Monday
- Nov. 28: Giving Tuesday
- Dec. 11: Green Monday
- Dec. 12: Start of Hanukkah
- Dec. 15: Free Shipping Day
- Dec. 24: Christmas Eve
- Dec. 25: Christmas Day
- Dec. 26: Start of Kwanzaa
- Dec. 31: New Year’s Eve
- Jan. 1: New Year’s Day
8 Holiday Email-Marketing Tips to Send Your E-Commerce Sales Soaring
Looking to drive more sales and revenue from your holiday email campaigns this year? Check out these 8 great holiday email optimization tips:
- Start early and send holiday teaser emails. For many consumers, the holiday shopping season begins well before Black Friday and Cyber Monday. And holiday teaser emails are an effective way to get the word out about your special holiday promotions, as well as ensure that your email message arrives ahead of the high email send volume that occurs during the holidays. Teaser emails also can help build excitement and anticipation for your holiday promotions, “priming” your subscribers and making them more likely to convert.
To give you an idea of just how effective this technique can be, last year, FulcrumTech implemented a Cyber Monday teaser campaign for one of our consumer-products e-commerce clients. And as a result, the Cyber Monday email campaign achieved a 238% improvement in revenue over the previous year’s already-high-performing campaign. Click here for more details about holiday teaser emails and tips on how to create your own successful campaigns.
- Use pop-ups on your website to help grow your email list and acquire new customers. Did you realize that pop-ups can help achieve an average email list growth of 20%? That’s what a recent Listrak study found. In addition, Listrak reported that the revenue of welcome email series is 23% higher for new subscribers that join through a pop-up.
Check out the 2 following articles for more information about how to use pop-ups to help grow your email list with high-quality customers in anticipation for a successful holiday season:
- Use predictive analytics to personalize your holiday email campaigns with product recommendations. Engage your customers with smart product recommendations that are based on such information as products that they’ve already purchased and products at which they’ve recently browsed on your website. In addition, leverage other demographic variables (e.g., age and gender) to target your holiday email content and offers, and to make your email messages more relevant to individual customers. Click here for information about how to effectively use predictive analytics in your email marketing.
- Send post-purchase emails to encourage additional sales. Another way to help boost your sales during the holidays is to design and implement triggered emails to be sent to customers soon after they make a purchase. Include discounts on future purchases, as well as product recommendations based on their previous purchases.
- Create gift guides and design email campaigns around them. Give your customers a hand in finding the perfect holiday gift for their family and friends by creating gift guides. Be sure to send the gift guides early enough in the holiday season to help keep your brand top of mind during the holidays and drive more sales.
- Use responsive design for your holiday email campaigns. Likely more than half of your subscribers are opening your emails on mobile devices. That’s why it’s so important that your holiday email campaigns are optimized for mobile viewing. For more information on this topic, be sure to check out our article, “How to Use Responsive Email Design to Optimize Your ROI.”
- Send during low-volume times to help your emails stand out in the inbox. What is the best time of day to send your holiday emails? That’s something you should test and optimize for your target audience. After all, you need every advantage you can get for your holiday emails to stand out in the inbox. For example, you may find that sending your holiday emails during low-volume times is effective. In a recent study, Venngage found that the number of emails sent is lowest just before lunch (11 a.m. to noon) and right after lunch (1 p.m. to 3 p.m.). So, test to see if your performance metrics, including open and click rates, increase by sending during these typically low-volume times.
- Leverage product reviews in your holiday emails to help drive sales. Many online shoppers turn to customer reviews of products before they make a purchase online. So, encourage product feedback from satisfied customers in your email-marketing and social media channels. And then use those positive customer reviews in holiday email campaigns to help convince prospects and customers that purchasing from your company is their best bet this holiday season.
The holidays are right around the corner. Is your email-marketing strategy ready? Contact the email-marketing experts at FulcrumTech, [link to https://fulcrumtech.net/contact/ and we’ll show you how to design and implement holiday email campaigns that not only stand out in your subscribers’ mailboxes, but also get the click and the sale.