7 Welcome Email Tips for eCommerce Stores [+Examples]

They say you can make the first impression only once.

The same rule applies to eCommerce. Makes a great first impression and customers will be more likely to buy and keep you in mind for future purchases.

Welcome emails are how you make that impression.

The initial email interaction sets the tone of the relationship with customers and lets you show your e-store in a flattering light. A good way to think of welcome emails as business calls that are actually interesting.

Keep reading to know how to make welcome email series that convert like crazy. But first, let’s see what makes them a great way to sell.

Why Are Welcome Emails Important? 

The first reason to add welcome emails into your eCommerce email marketing strategy is better client engagement. Marketing automation is intended to be clickable, and what’s a better way to do it than through a greeting message?

Your audience’s expectations are an opportunity that’s not to be disregarded. A welcome email is both a short but convincing introduction and a promise (and sometimes already a delivery) of what the future holds.

Here is some proof (source: Investp):

  • Welcome emails have a conversion rate of 0.94% in contrast to 0.10% for general marketing emails 
  • Click rate of welcome emails is five times better compared to other email types 
  • Offer in a welcome email can boost revenue up to 30% per email
  • After receiving a welcoming email, customers engage 33% more times

7 Tips for Effective eCommerce Welcome Emails

Here are seven proven tips to get the most out of your welcome emails, plus some welcome email examples for inspiration. Let’s get started.

1. Get the Timing Right 

That’s why consider sending your welcome emails within an hour after the sign-up or email confirmation, while the memory of subscribing is still fresh. 

The person’s interest has just peaked, and we don’t want to lose it. When a person subscribes to your newsletter, they expect confirmation right away; otherwise, they might think their email address is being collected for some shady purposes.

2. Give Thanks for Subscribing 

Thank customers for signing up to receive your emails. Saying “thank you” is more than just politeness and proper manners—we’re trying to make that amazing first impression, remember?

If your sign-up form requires a person’s name, be sure to use it or any other personalized greeting. A simple kind of personalization shows your thoughtfulness.

To show you an idea, take a look at this welcome email from the home decor and furniture store Brooklinen. The first two lines in their welcoming letter are words of gratitude and them calling you a friend. Even without the name, that email feels very warm and personal. 

3. Share Information about Upcoming Content 

Will you be sending emails with info about upcoming sales, discounts, or blog posts? Your customers don’t know, and they should. 

It’s always helpful to set expectations right away by sharing information about what goodies they will receive from you. Perhaps tease an exclusive deal coming or a launch of a new product?

By providing information about upcoming content in your welcome emails, you might reduce the unsubscription levels. Sure, some people may unsubscribe but most will be glad to know what you have for them.

Check out this email from the wine shop and blog Wine Enthusiast. Right off the bat, the brand explains what to expect from them, starting with exclusive offers and first access to new items, followed by wine news and recipes.

4. Introduce Your Brand

Consider writing a short intro to your brand’s history, mission, principles, and goals. People love to buy from brands they share some values with, so it could be a good idea to establish trust.

So, consider sharing some interesting facts about your company or transform its history into a fascinating tale of effort and success.

Need inspiration? Take a look at this email from Jeni’s – an online ice cream shop. They crafted a mini-story and an explanation of what makes their ice creams unique and legit.

5. Give a Gift

Welcome emails are a wonderful place to share discounts or coupon codes and encourage buying, especially if you promised that in the sign-up form. That’s why so many welcome email examples contain discounts and perks like free shipping.

Even if you didn’t promise any gift beforehand, give it regardless – perhaps an exclusive offer or a free download. This sort of unexpected but pleasant surprise will guarantee you a loyal customer more than vague promises of the future.

Below is an example of a welcome email from Ralph Lauren, a large luxury clothes and accessories brand.

The email offers 10% off on the next order with a unique coupon code that wasn’t previously mentioned in the sign-up form (yes, we checked). So, make sure you have discounts for members only, those being, as they put it, a token of appreciation.

6. Offer Helpful Resources 

Make yourself accessible. Share links to your blog, social media profiles, customers support pages, and other ways to stay in touch. Your blogs and social media accounts are an excellent tool for product promotions, but don’t use them excessively.

The more different types and formats of staying in touch you have, the better. Not everyone likes to read blogs – they may wish to watch YouTube videos or Instagram stories. Maybe include a few customer support emails or popular messengers for approachability.To illustrate this tip, take a look at the email from a fashion brand New Look. They have seven links under “daily inspiration,” while others usually have two or three at most.

7. Share Customer Reviews 

Consider adding reviews from loyal clients or review platforms to build customer trust and encourage the first purchase. Do it humbly but confidently, without too much bragging. Customer testimonials should be, at best, unbiased.

Check out an email from Oros, a scientifically insulated outerwear brand – short and concise praising messages about their customer favorite parka. It doesn’t look like showing off because they are not just praising themselves. In addition, it shows the suggestion for the first purchase.

Ecommerce Welcome Emails: Summary 

The welcome email can be a single occurrence with a straight-to-business attitude afterward, or it can be a bonus-packed 4 to 6 email series of introductory desserts. Regardless of the option, our seven tips will ensure that you give you a great chance to make that great first impression.

How An eCommerce Quiz Can Drive Customer Engagement & Satisfaction

A quiz may be the missing piece of your marketing strategy. 

Here’s why: in the day of automation and personalization, a quiz is the differentiating tool that will help eCommerce brands stand out and build lasting customer relationships. 

Perhaps you’ve seen quizzes in your own shopping experiences– some websites require shoppers to go through a quiz to even start the checkout process. The likes of Stitch Fix, Winc, and The Farmer’s Dog customer input before you can even buy a product.   

And it makes sense, considering the macro factors of today’s eCommerce space: increasing customer acquisition costs, intensifying competitive landscape, and customers having more choices than ever before. 

How can brands differentiate themselves? 

One (timeless) approach is to create an unmatched customer experience: personalized exactly to the desires of the shopper. 

The key factor here is the data inputs. The adage “garbage in garbage out” is true for personalized marketing campaigns. The effectiveness of a personalization strategy is only as good as the customer data that the personalization is built around. 

And the best way to get this customer data is the most intuitive and simple solution: ask your customers.

Today’s shoppers want a personalized experience, and 71% are frustrated when they do not receive a personalized experience. 91% of shoppers are more likely to shop with brands that personalize their marketing, and in fact, they are more than willing to provide the relevant data to make this possible.

The only problem is that brands are not taking advantage of this willingness. 

This is the customer experience gap: shoppers are simply not getting the shopping experience that they want (and deserve). 

And there are real dollars at stake–driven by higher conversion rates, higher average order value, and more repeat purchases. 

In this post, we will examine three ways that a quiz can create a better customer experience, and how you can get started on executing your own personalization and quiz funnel strategy. 

Quiz Benefit #1 Recommend The Right Product 

One of the most intuitive use-cases of a quiz is a product recommendation quiz. 

This is the most direct stand-in for the in-person retail experience, something that many of us have not been able to enjoy due to the pandemic. 

Imagine stepping into a store interacting with a sales associate. The associate would greet you politely, ask a few open-ended questions to gauge your interests, your preferences are, and get an idea of what you’re looking for. From there the associate might make a quick mental calculation of what products in their inventory might fit your interest, and guide you to that product with a brief explanation and overview of the product. 

As a shopper, the more informed you are about the process of buying the product is far easier and you have a greater likelihood of purchasing additional products that the sales associate might recommend–an upsell based on relevancy. 

What you’ve gone through is the in-person equivalent of the product recommendation quiz.

A product recommendation quiz makes sense for a variety of niches and use cases. 

Skin care brands and cosmetic brands often use quizzes because the nuance of skin tone and product features is very precise. Imagine walking into a retail store like Sephora… You might want to know what skin tone or what lipstick or Foundation best matches your skin tone. And there are infinite numbers of skin tone. Thus you see a product recommendation quiz like Fenty’s Foundation Finder.

There are many SKU and variations, making it harder for the shopper to know exactly what the right product will be. Thus the quiz can take a few basic inputs and process that against the inventory to make a relevant recommendation. This is exactly what an in-person sales associate would do!

Every data point helps guide the shopper to the right product. And of course an email is captured so that the merchants can send subsequent messaging.

Impacted KPI: The product recommendation quiz directly impacts a site’s Conversion Rate, or ability to convert a shopper into a paying customer. 

Quiz Benefit #2. Ensure Customer Satisfaction

As mentioned earlier, ad costs and competition have increased the money required to drive and convert traffic. Thus, it’s more important to drive repeat purchases to offset the increased acquisition costs. 

Some brands do not realize a profit until the second purchase or thereafter. These repeat purchases are where subscription e-commerce businesses generate a bulk of their profits. 

And in order to continue getting repeat purchases it is imperative to understand as much as possible about the shoppers’ interest, preferences and likes. 

If there is so much as one poor customer experience, the customer may cancel the subscription and churn out. This can be devastating in terms of undermining profits.

Thus, a quiz is an important tool to capture key data customer insights at the very beginning of the customer journey, before a purchase has even been made. 

One great example of a quiz that gathers key customer data points is Trade Coffee

In a simple seven question quiz, Trade uncovers the basics of what a customer is looking for with their coffee: do they like light, medium, or dark roast? Are they willing to try different flavor profiles? Do they like sugar or not with your coffee? All of these questions and preferences are captured in the quiz.

This is very important because Trade relies on every single order pleasing the customer and creating a positive experience. 

If Trade did not have this quiz then they would be at risk of either a) sending repetitive orders (and thus a customer who becomes bored) or b) a customer who receives coffee that is not aligned with their taste preferences. 

Therefore the quiz acts as guardrails to know exactly what would increase the likelihood of a happy customer. 

Stitch Fix is another example of a company that heavily relies on the data gathered in the quiz before sending anything out to a customer. 

Stitch Fix has an extensive quiz, nearly eighty questions that asks everything from the basics (like the fit and sizing of shirts, pants, shoes, etc) but also more nuanced and subjective information like style preferences and willingness to try new trendy styles. 

Stitch Fix has grown into a multibillion-dollar business by leveraging the data on this quiz to also ensure that the customer has a higher likelihood of purchase and a greater chance of sticking around as a paying customer.

Impacted KPI: For subscription ecommerce brands that must ensure a happy customer with every purchase, a quiz is used to drive a higher Customer Lifetime Value by increasing the likelihood of a happy customer who will continue their subscription orders. 

Quiz Benefit #3: Capture More Leads

A quiz works well because it is a fun and engaging way for a shopper to share information that would benefit them and their experience as a customer. 

When capturing leads, the common default is for brands to offer free shipping or a discount in exchange for an email address. Here is an example from DTC drink brand Recess

The challenge with this is that there is not much context or detail to this captured email–in the example above, Recess captures a name and email. But what is the shopper looking for specifically, what would they likely purchase, what messaging would keep them engaged? 

Now imagine if you were to ask just a few simple questions and attach that to the email address in the CRM. 

For example if you are selling dog food, knowing the breed, the size, the age, the general health of the dog this would help immensely in knowing what marketing campaigns emails offers and messages would resonate with a customer.

Even moreso, what if you were able to understand where in the funnel the shopper is in terms of receptivity to the offer? 

For example, if you were to ask are you willing to spend money in order to get higher-quality food. This would be really valuable information, because you be able to essentially share top of the funnel content (education about the benefits of healthy food close?

Or you could alternatively know that you are dealing with a customer at the bottom of the funnel who may be comparing your offering with other similar competitors. 

A quiz can allow you to gauge the temperature of a customer’s willingness to purchase and alter your marketing as a result 
Impacted KPI: by gathering more leads, and leads that have better data, a quiz can impact the upside of an email marketing campaign to generate a higher ROI from email marketing.

How To Get Started With A Quiz

The upside of a quiz is straightforward — get a better understanding of what your customers are looking for so that you can create a better customer experience. 

Will a quiz be effective for your brand? 

One simple way to assess this is to imagine what a salesperson would do if you had the luxury of engaging with each person who visits your website. 

What are the types of questions that you would get most frequently? What are the common objections? 

Are there some products that match a particular type of customer? 

A quiz can be an effective tool to help facilitate the customer experience and easily guide shoppers to the right product. The outcomes can be a higher conversion rate, average order value, and customer lifetime value. 

So where can you get more of this important data to understand what you need to do?

Questions that come up repeatedly with support tickets or live chat transcripts are one simple way to start.

Another good way is to work backwards from how you built your email marketing strategy and segmentation: what are the types of segments have you created, and based on what attributes?  How does the messaging differ based on this segmentation? 

For example Stitch Fix may have different marketing personas for the conservative professional dresser, the clubgoer, the casual athleisure type. 

Each of these can be identified like crafting the quiz questions in a certain way as to identify what is most important to the shopper.

You may have heard personalization a lot, and you may hear it more and more as a marketing strategy. But it is important to acknowledge that an effective personalization campaign is only as good as the data that is fed into it. 

The most direct and certain way of understanding what those what your shoppers are looking for is to ask them directly. 

This is why a quiz is such a critical tool in your marketing strategy, and can be a path towards differentiating your brand with a stellar customer experience. 

Gen is Co-Founder of Prehook, an interactive quiz builder for Shopify merchants. He can be found on Twitter and Linked In.

5 Email Automations Every Merchant Should Set Up

Email marketing is incredibly effective at generating sales. So much so that, on average, every dollar invested in email returns $38 in sales.

Despite its effectiveness and its ability to let you reach customers directly (without worrying about any social media algorithms), many merchants are put off setting up an email marketing strategy.

Why? Because they think sending emails requires too much time and effort. 

But while it might be true that your weekly or monthly newsletters require an ongoing commitment, the same can’t be said for automated email campaigns.

Email automations only have to be set up once, after which they’ll continue sending automatically to the right customers at the right time. This means they don’t require any ongoing effort.

The problem, however, is knowing which email automations are worth setting up. That’s why we’ve created this list of the top five automations every merchant should set up.

Essential Email Marketing Automations

1) Welcome Email

Chances are you already know what a welcome email is. It’s the email you receive immediately after signing up to someone’s email list. 

This makes them one of the most common email automations, not just in ecommerce but throughout all the different types of email marketing. 

Because of their ubiquity, three-quarters of people expect to receive a welcome email after signing up to an email list. So if you don’t have a welcome email set up, you’re giving your customers a bad first impression. 

In terms of what your welcome email should look like, you should make sure it covers the following points:

  • Thank your new subscribers for signing up to your email list
  • Let customers know what to expect from your future emails 

The example below Starbucks is a good example of a welcome email.

2) Abandoned Cart Emails

Abandoned cart emails are a type of email automation unique to ecommerce as they address one of the biggest problems faced by merchants: cart abandonment. 

On average, for every three customers who add products to their online cart, only one will complete the checkout process. That’s where abandoned cart emails come in. 

Abandoned cart emails are triggered whenever a customer adds items to their cart, but then doesn’t check out after a certain time period (usually 30 minutes or an hour). 

The emails themselves serve as a reminder prompting people to come back and complete their purchase. If the first reminder doesn’t work, most merchants will automate a couple of follow-ups, often with an incentive like a coupon code to sweeten the deal. 

The email below from Moment is a good example of a typical abandoned cart email.

3) Thank You For Your Purchase Emails

Too many merchants think that their job is done once a customer makes a purchase. 

In reality, the customer journey does not end at purchase. Smart merchants know they should continue to nurture customers so that they become loyal, repeat customers. 

One of the best ways to do this is with a simple thank you email. 

This email automation is dedicated to simply thanking customers for their purchase which while might not seem like much, can go a long way to making customers feel appreciated which builds customer loyalty. 

The email below from Abercrombie & Fitch is a good example of this in action.

4) Birthday Emails

Another great way of building loyalty is by sending customers an email on their birthdays. This is also a great way of generating additional sales. 

Compared to regular email marketing campaigns, birthday emails have a 481% higher transaction rate, generate 342% more revenue per email sent, and enjoy a 179% higher click rate.

As their name suggests, all you have to do with them is wish your customer a happy birthday and include some kind of special offer (it is their birthday, after all). 

The example below from wine.com is a good example of a birthday email.

5) Win-back Emails

It doesn’t matter how great of a job you’ve done at building customer loyalty, even the most loyal of customers will go cold over time and stop purchasing from your store. 

This is where win-back emails come in. 

These triggered emails are sent as soon as a customer hasn’t purchased anything for a certain period of time. As their name suggests, they then attempt to win the customer back, usually with a special offer.

The win-back email from Sephora below is a good example of this type of campaign.

Summing Up

Email automations are not only easy to set up but continually generate sales with minimal ongoing effort required. 

So if you haven’t started sending automated emails for your store yet, it’s time to get started setting up the ones on this list!