Rethink Your Thank You Emails

thank you

Transactional emails offer prime real estate for driving further customer engagement or action.

Your business probably invests a lot of time and effort creating marketing emails to send to your prospects and consumers. But have you thought much about the content of your confirmation and thank you emails?

New findings from IBM Marketing Cloud’s 2016 Email Marketing Metrics Benchmark Study suggest you should. The survey “examines messages sent by nearly 750 companies and 3,000 brands in 2015, using a wide variety of measurements to establish benchmarks on customer engagement (via multiple open, click, and device/email client metrics) and list churn (hard bounces, unsubscribes, and complaints).”

One important finding relates to how recipients engage with transactional emails, messages confirming a purchase or an action (such as signing up for a newsletter). In almost every respect, transactional emails outperform non-transactional emails. For example:

  • Transactional emails generate roughly 2x the open rates of non-transactional emails.
  • Transactional emails generate roughly 3x the click-through rates of non-transactional emails.

This should not be a surprise, since these emails are based directly on a person’s purchase or action. But what many companies don’t realize is that these messages represent an opportunity to drive further customer engagement or action. Adding a prominent call to action can encourage the recipient to join your email list, make an additional purchase, or otherwise move further down the purchase path.

Instead of a simple “Thanks for your purchase!” email, put a little thought into how you might keep that person interacting with your business. Here are a few ideas:

1) Ask them to review their purchases.

Include a link to the recipient’s account or orders page. This gets them back on your website, where you can add additional calls to action, advertise related products, or encourage them to join a loyalty program.

2) Offer an incentive for future purchases.

Encourage recipients to buy again soon by providing a discount code for their next transaction. This also helps build brand loyalty by showing customers you value their business and want them to come back.

3) Request they follow you on social media.

Provide links to your various social media accounts to build additional touch points with your customers and prospects. Suggest they post photos of themselves using the products they purchased, share their purchase (or link to the newsletter sign-up, etc.) with their followers, or enter your contest or giveaway happening on these platforms.

4) Show them how to use their purchase.

Link to content that can improve their experience with the product or service they just bought. Step-by-steps guides, how-to videos, images of other buyers using the product: give them valuable support to improve their user experience and to keep them engaged with your content.

5) Display similar or related products.

What else do customers buy when they make the same purchase? Do you have other products or services that go along with it? For example, someone buying a hammer might also be interested in nails, toolboxes, or screwdrivers.

6) Ask them to join your loyalty or rewards program.

This is another way to offer incentives for future purchases and exclusive access to deals while your business gains additional information about the person.

7) Request they sign up for your newsletter, join your email list, or subscribe to your blog.

Encourage them to stay in the loop by opting into your content. You’ll stay in the sights of potential buyers that aren’t ready to make a purchase, and be on their mind when the time comes to buy.

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