Every year I attend Litmus Live to learn what other email marketers are doing and to apply those learnings to Blueport’s email marketing programs for our retailers. I always leave surprised by how much I learn in such a short amount of time – the content, speakers, and takeaways get better and better each year.
The past couple of years, I’ve walked away from the event knowing this: email is a challenging channel for digital marketers with shopping behaviors and trends changing rapidly. Here at Blueport, we produce a lot of emails per day for a number of different furniture retail clients. To keep up, we continuously strive to improve upon our email marketing tactics with frequent reevaluations of our email process and strategy.
To help furniture retailers avoid falling into a rut of sending ineffective or irrelevant emails, I’ve brought back three tips on how to take your emails to the next level:
Treat Email as Its Own Identity
As an omnichannel furniture retailer, there are many parts of your business to think about on a daily basis. With the variety of channels available to reach shoppers, it’s easy for email to become an afterthought.
But in today’s omnichannel era, in which both ecommerce and stores play an integral role in converting shoppers, retailers need to engage shoppers throughout each touch-point of the entire shopping journey. Email, a critical channel of the shopping journey, deserves its own cohesive strategy to engage shoppers no matter the stage of the funnel they are in. To do this, you need a team of email marketers and designers working off an email strategy separate, but supportive of your website and other marketing channels.
Create Email Designs That Engage Your Shoppers
Another way to treat email as its own identity is to produce email designs specifically for your emails. The designs should not only be specific to the overall email messaging, but they should also interest your shoppers so that they open, click and land on your site.
While it’s easy to take creative from other channels and re-purpose it for emails, it’s best to take the time to create unique, targeted designs for each of your email segments. Showing the same promotion creative in emails as online is redundant for shoppers moving cross channels. Additionally, individual channels have different conversion goals depending on what stage in the furniture shopping funnel the channels are touching upon, which is why your emails should have specific designs and messaging differing from your other channels.
And with email design trends evolving, there are so many unique email designs to choose from to further engage shoppers, like mobile-first design, design with interactive elements, and much more.
Interactive emails or CSS animation are great ways to boost your email design capabilities, engage shoppers and encourage them to open and click. And don’t worry, your interactive emails don’t have to be too complex. They can be as simple as adding less commonly used features into emails, such as hover effects or image carousels. Games and quizzes are also fun interactive ways to get your shoppers to engage with your emails and lead them to your site.
This email uses a carousel to allow shoppers to view the product in different colors while never having to leave their email inbox
J. Crew is a great example of a brand that experiments with unique, engaging designs to inspire and drive shoppers to their website and stores.
Keep Shoppers Subscribed With a Healthy Email List
Email subscribers will unsubscribe from your emails for all sorts of reasons: receiving too many emails, irrelevant content that looks like spam, and more. But, maintaining list health is an effective way to help reduce the drop-off in subscribers.
A healthy email list means you have a better chance of your emails being delivered and out of the spam folder. To maintain list health, ensure your lists are free from typos and duplicate email addresses. You should also make sure to keep your bounce rate as low as possible and remove non-engaged email addresses. All this maintenance is worth the effort to stay out of the spam folder and ensure that your active subscribers receive your emails.
Alternative ways to help keep your subscribers and improve the health of your lists are below:
- Segment your email subscribers
- Stop mailing unengaged email subscribers
- Consider the double or confirmed opt-in
- Make sure your emails are sent from a domain that you can reply to
- Don’t use random content – craft relevant content and graphics
One important note is if your subscribers place your emails in spam folders, you should stop emailing them together. This is critical to avoid a higher propensity to bounce, a higher likelihood to mark your emails as spam, and a negative impact on your Gmail subscribers (Gmail has stricter deliverability criteria than other email providers).
At Blueport, we understand that a strong email team and clear email strategy ensure that we’re managing our day-to-day email tasks and producing high-quality and effective email campaigns that convert shoppers. If you’d like to discuss your email processes and/or strategy today, check out our Ecommerce Help services and contact us today.