Email Marketing & Cart Abandonment Results

emailResultsA few months ago, I shared our plan to implement email marketing with promises to share how things went … and the results are in! I’m happy to report with the help of Klaviyo and Rejoiner we were able to generate 10.5% of our overall sales from email marketing in June.

Email Marketing with Klaviyo

In terms of ramp-up over the last three months, here’s how email marketing as a percent of sales broke down:

% of Revenue Generated via Email

Email-by-Month

Simply kickstarting our email marketing program instantly gave us an 8% boost to revenue.  Not bad!

As discussed in the previous post, we segmented our email marketing efforts into different trackable email campaigns. These included everything from “newsletter” emails, which are broad product sales sent to our entire list, to “enhancement” messages, which are up-sells for a specific item a customer had purchased.

Here’s which message types did best:

Email-Chart-2

Far and away, our traditional sale/newsletter emails (the “newsletter” segment) brought in the most revenue.  Why?  Because we didn’t segment customers for these messages, they reached everyone on our mailing list.  They also went out the most frequently (once every week or two), and so ended up in front of customers more often.

The effectiveness of these emails backs up what Ed Hallen said in our discussion on email marketing: Just getting started is the most important thing.  Yes, segmentation is incredibly powerful, and Klaviyo (the service we’re using) has some amazing features along those lines.  But for the quickest bang for the buck, it’s hard to beat simply sending out regular marketing messages to your list.

Our “newsletter” style emails generally took a similar format.  We’d chat with our suppliers and see what products they’d be willing to offer for sale that week.  If we were able to get something at a great price, we’d feature that as a special.  Other times, we’d simply pick a popular product to offer as the weekly deal and take a smaller margin.  An example of our weekly email newsletter can be seen below:

Sample Newsletter

 

We’re also using Klaviyo’s powerful segmentation function to create customized follow-up marketing messages.  For example, VIP customers who have placed numerous orders will automatically get sent a discount coupon.  And some customers are automatically sent up-sell emails with accessories related to the products they’ve purchased.

But we still have a lot of work ahead of us to move the needle from the 10% of revenue range up to the 15% or even 20%.  The first 10% was the easiest, as it largely consisted of just getting a basic program in place.

To earn that additional revenue, we’ll need to get smart and targeted with our segmentation follow-up campaigns.  This will require building out lots of highly specialized campaigns that may not be triggered as often as our newsletters but will convert at a (hopefully) much higher rate.

Retargeting with Rejoiner

The majority of our email revenues were generated by emailing existing customers, but we also generated a portion of that 10.5% of revenue by emailing customers who had abandoned their shopping carts.  Using cart abandonment service Rejoiner, customers who abandoned their carts automatically received three messages:

1.  An email reminding them about the cart

2. A second email asking them to finish their purchase

3.  A final email offering a discount to complete their purchase

 

Cart-Abandonment-Email

 

Retargeting Results

We implemented our cart abandonment follow-ups before we kickstarted our email campaign in April, but it’s so closely related that I decided to bundle the two together in this post.  So how did the abandonment campaign perform?

 

Rejoiner-Chart-2

 

Overall, we were able to recover between 3% and 11% of the abandoned carts each month.  Not too bad, but not nearly as high as the 15% average that Rejoiner co-founder Mike Arsenault sees on average.

In an attempt to increase open rates, we changed the sender’s name from “Right Channel Radios” to the name of our sales manager, Pat.  The timing of this change can be seen with the “*” next to April in the chart.  You’ll notice that it made a big difference, at least in the short term; open rates increased more than 50% and recoveries doubled!  It appears the old saying, “People like getting emails from other people, not companies,” has merit.

But over the next few months, both open rates and recoveries fell, and I’m not sure why this is.  One idea is that as we scaled up our newsletter marketing in April to a large volume of people, inevitably more people hit the “delete” and “spam” buttons.  I think it’s possible that this may have hurt our deliverability with all our messages and brought down our cart abandonment levels as well.  I’m still looking into the issue, and it could be something else entirely.

Overall, our cart abandonment emails made up just under 2% of our total revenues generated from email marketing for the quarter.  Not bad at all for a set-it-and-forget-it system.

Next Steps & Questions

In the next three months, we’ll be working to really build out our segmented email marketing campaigns and optimize our abandonment recovery emails to get those close to the 10% to 15% average.  I’ll be excited to share our results with you come October!

Until then, I’m happy to answer any questions you may have – just leave them in the comments section below.

Photo by purplemattfish

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Comments

  1. Steve says:

    Hi there,

    Interesting stuff – would you mind sharing basic email stats for your standard campaigns? Similar to those you illustrate for retargetting.

    I’m just thinking of Open Rate, CTR etc. Conversion rate if you’re able to share.

    Cheers,

    Steve

    • Andrew says:

      Absolutely! Probably should have included these in the original post. :-) The metrics vary as the content differs from message to message, but here are averages for our “newsletter” campaigns – our most popular mailing – over the last month or so:

      Conversion Rate: Don’t disclose the actual rate, but it is 150% higher than our “average” conversion rate for general traffic

      Open Rate: Approximately 18%

      Click-Through-Rate: Approximately 2.5%

      CTR is fairly low as these message are going out to thousands of un-segmented people, so it’s not as focussed as the abandoned emails. But we make up for the lower CTR in volume on these mailings.

  2. Scott McKirahan says:

    I guess it would be helpful to see profit increase numbers in conjunction with gross revenue numbers. For instance, if you average a 6% recovery rate on abandoned carts but ended up having to give away an average of a 7% discount (between those who responded immediately and those who waited for the discount in Email #3), you actually really gained nothing (and may have actually lost profits versus if you had done nothing).

    Similarly, if your Email campaigns gave away 10%-off coupons and resulted in 10% gross revenue gains, isn’t that really breaking even? Maybe I’m not looking at this the right way.

    I don’t mind breaking even on a campaign if I am in a market that caters to repeat business customers but so many niches are one shot and gone forever ones because of the types of products they are. In the case of the guy selling pool tables, for instance, it is very unlikely that customers will be returning again and again to buy another table and less than likely that his accessories can be priced well enough to compete with the local stores. In a case like that, the work involved does not justify breaking even.

    • Andrew says:

      Great question, Scott! I haven’t calculated the average margin on our emails orders yet, but if I had to ballpark it I’d say that they are probably about 60% of our regular margins – so we’re still making money on the mailings. Not quite as much as we do offer discounts / specials, but still a good portion.

      Also, when we do offer specials we often get special pricing from the manufacturer which helps. And we also get a fair number of people picking up add-on items at full price which help increase the margin.

  3. Andrew,

    Looks great! Considering my site is fresh off the press with only 3 weeks running I havent took the dive into “add-ons” with shopify but have researched some. It doesnt appear Rejoiner is compatible with Shopify do you know of a equivalent? Also, I have done some email marketing and cart abandonment of my own. All manually at this point as I said above just dont have the funds or even need at this point. Did some email marketing first with information collected from my launchrock.co page pre-launch and then now with cart abandonment. Nothing to show yet but like I said only three weeks. At this point nothing exciting like yours! 10% thats great!

    Thanks,
    -Blake Anderson

    • Ed Hallen says:

      Hi Blake –
      First off, good luck with the new site launch!

      Per your question about abandoned cart solutions for Shopify, Klaviyo actually does newsletters, abandoned carts, post-purchase follow-ups, etc all in one place. We have pre-built templates we can help you get setup with so you’re up and running in no time.

      Feel free to drop me an email at ed.hallen@klaviyo.com if you have any questions or if there’s anything I can do for you.
      Best,
      Ed

  4. Patrick B says:

    Awesome post – I really subscribe to your disciplined marketing approach. I think it’s important for business owners not to get the “shiny object” syndrome when it comes to marketing. Having a regular, consistent, and highly quantified approach to marketing is the best way to improve your long-term success rate, and really figure out what works & what doesn’t.

    I think you’ll prove this out in the next results post & future posts! Can’t wait to see how the rest is going!

    • Andrew says:

      Thanks Patrick! “Shiny Object” syndrome is really dangerous, and I’ve almost been taken with it a number of times as well. :-) Hope to have some promising results to share next quarter!

  5. Amy Singe says:

    Andrew can you share a bit about why you chose Klaviyo for you email marketing. How does this compare to say aweber or even ontraport? I am looking to switch from mailchimp and are interested in the reasons for your decision?

    Thanks Amy

    • Andrew says:

      The biggest reason I was attracted to Klaviyo was their automation rules based on customer purchasing activity in Magento. So, if a customer buys Product X we can follow-up automatically with specific accessories and upsells for that product. To my knowledge, aWeber and MailChimp don’t have that kind of power. Ontraport, (which I’ll actually be moving the eCommerceFuel list to soon!) is very powerful, but is geared more toward information marketers. I don’t believe they offer the kind of product-integration with Magento that Klaviyo does.

      Hopes this helps!

  6. James says:

    Whenever I open emails, I create an association with the sender that determines if I’m going to open them again, If I repeatably find I’m not getting something useful I’ll quit looking (if the sender is ‘lucky’ enough to have me open them at all), maybe this is why the rates dropped? Perhaps some checked them out, but then found that they weren’t finding something they wanted?

    My question is what are people looking for in opening a marketing email anyway? When I open your Ecommerce Fuel letters, I’m looking for useful information and I usually get it, so I keep opening and reading, but I never bother opening marketing emails, so who does and what are they looking for? If they’re enthusiasts, maybe it’s more than just a deal?

    • Andrew says:

      Good point, James! Open rates can definitely decrease over time if you’re not offering value.

      However, I don’t think that’s the case with out abandon cart series. The higher initial open rates were for the exact same series of three emails that were sent to customers, so a baseline was established. And the data collected in future months was to new customers, so each customer received those three emails and no more. So it wasn’t a gradual decreasing of the open rate over time to the same customers. Rather, the open rate fell to new customers when the previous sequence had been working well.

      Still looking into why, and hope to be able to find some answers. Thanks for the comment!

  7. David says:

    Hi Andrew,

    Great post. Another email marketing opportunity that is often overlooked is actually aimed at existing customers right after a purchase. These emails utilize tracking data and shipping updates to take advantage of customers actually wanting to hear about the status of their order.

    In reference to James’ comment above, these types of emails would also set a positive tone and higher engagement for further marketing campaigns as the customer expects value from your emails.

    Off course these targeted shipping updates help with ensuring orders are delivered timely and help catch long overdue deliveries.

    If your interested in including these kinds of emails into your campaigns get in contact and check out http://www.parcelpup.com, I would love to get you setup as a beta tester for a case study.

    • Andrew says:

      Thanks David! Haven’t considered implementing step-by-step tracking updates, but can obviously see the value the customer. People are always anxious to get their stuff!

      Does your service, Parcel Pup, work with USPS as well?

  8. David says:

    Hi Andrew, yes Parcel Pup works with USPS. Basically if the carrier has online tracking, then we can support it. We already have full support for most major US and Global Carriers like USPS, UPS, FedEx, DHL, and TOLL aswell as full support for most Australian carriers. and we have plans to support over 100 carriers worldwide. Our magento integration module should be ready within a couple of weeks, keen to try it out?

  9. Thomas OConnor says:

    Hi Andrew,
    Awesome article as usual. Looks like you have a work in progress that’s headed in the right direction. Maybe you can tell us if you had any conflicts between Minn Kota and MotorGuide when you were setting up your business. Meaning, did you have to tell each company that you were going to also sell the competitions motors. And how did that play out? Keep up the good work.
    Thomas

    • Andrew says:

      Thanks Thomas! No problems at all between the two manufacturers – people sell the two brands side-by-side all the time without issue, and it’s fairly common.

  10. Eugene says:

    Hi Andrew,

    For your email marketing, are you allowed to message every customer that has placed an order with you initially, or only those who subscribed to the newsletter on the site?

    Thank you

    • Andrew says:

      Great question, Eugene. We send to anyone who has done either – signed up for our newsletter or placed an order.

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Trackbacks

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  2. […] first attempt at email marketing (in Q2 of this year) showed some encouraging results.  In just three months, we […]

  3. […] emprendedor Andrew Youderian mostró hace poco los resultados de su campaña de emailing para afrontar el abandono del carrito. Su estrategia se componía de 3 […]

  4. […] youdarin shared his recovery rates which ranged between […]

  5. […] segmented email list, or the ability to separate your list by best sellers and purchase history. Klaviyo is a pretty powerful tool with high […]

  6. […] emprendedor Andrew Youderian mostró hace meses los resultados de su campaña de emailing para afrontar el abandono del carrito. Su estrategia se componía de 3 fases: una […]

  7. […] Throw in a special offer to sweeten the deal and ensure that the user actually ends up buying. Ecommercefuel uses retargeted emails to recover up to 11% of abandoned shopping carts per […]

  8. […] Throw in a special offer to sweeten the deal and ensure that the user actually ends up buying. Ecommercefuel uses retargeted emails to recover up to 11% of abandoned shopping carts per […]

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