7 retail email marketing strategies

You can engage your customers with various email marketing strategies. You may find that one strategy works best for you, or you might decide to use all of them—that’s for you and your data to decide. Here are a few of our favorite retail email marketing strategies:

  1. Welcome emails: Make a good first impression. When a brand-new recipient subscribes to your email list, set expectations and start the relationship on the right foot with a top-notch welcome email.
  2. Newsletters: Email newsletters give you an excuse to communicate with prospects and customers on a consistent basis. Use a newsletter to provide updates on new products, discounts, seasonal promotions, store hours, and more.
  3. Discounts/promotions: Offers and discounts are the most click-influencing and memorable elements of an email. Discount by at least 40% to be perceived as more legitimate.
  4. Product announcements: Let your customers know when you release a new product—it’s an easy opportunity to find your first buyers without spending money on advertising.
  5. Abandoned cart emails: Customers abandon over 77% of digital carts. Follow up with those shoppers and convert them into buyers with abandoned cart email campaigns.
  6. Seasonal campaigns: Retail products and offers often shift with the season—let your customers know what’s going on and what to expect during specific seasons and holidays.
  7. Cross-sells and up-sells: Introduce your customers to other items they might be interested in buying based on their purchase history.

Retail email marketing tips & best practices

Design with intent

Well-designed emails help users engage with the content and find what they’re looking for. They ultimately drive your subscribers to read and take action.

Collect consent

According to GDPR, your subscribers must be informed of how you’ll be using their email address. Your customers submitting an email address for shipping notifications or creating an account on your website doesn’t give you automatic rights to send them marketing emails.

Automate where possible

Create targeted automations to send your subscribers the right email at exactly the right time. 

Personalize with data

Send content that’s hyper-relevant to your recipient. Bulk email sends may be appropriate for some campaigns, but you should be collecting and using data to send personalized content to your subscribers—and that goes beyond just using their first name in the subject line.

Set up a preference center

Give your customers a chance to opt-in and out of what they want to receive from the get-go. They may want to hear about product announcements, but they don’t care much for your weekly newsletter. They might prefer quarterly emails instead of monthly emails. Implement a preference center to let them decide.

Track your email metrics

Your email program isn’t a set-it-and-forget-it strategy. Regularly check your data so you can make adjustments to your campaigns. For example, if your data suggests unsubscribes are on the rise, you may want to adjust your content or decrease your frequency.

Take a multichannel approach

Your communication channels shouldn’t operate in silos. Make email a single part of a holistic multichannel communications program. This could include social media and SMS campaigns, as well as voice and video.

Clean your list

Regularly scrub your list to remove unengaged recipients and better segment your engaged audience. This will help you maintain your deliverability.

Place your unsubscribe button in plain sight

Don’t hide your unsubscribe button. If recipients want to unsubscribe from your emails, help them do it—it’s often for the best. If you don’t, they’ll likely just hit the “spam” button instead, and that’ll damage your sender reputation.