Tag: email

Free Email Templates | GoDaddy Pro


Just copy & paste

How many hours each week do you spend emailing clients? Once recent study from CNBC suggests the average worker commits more than five hours a day to tapping away at emails. That’s a lot of time you could get back — and at GoDaddy Pro, we’re all about taking back those hours. It’s why we’re creating a series of free email templates that web pros like designers and developers can use to save themselves serious time.

For many of us, our primary money-making skill doesn’t have much to do with writing. It’s about perfecting a .CSS stylesheet or editing images until (as clients are fond of saying) they have that “pop.” Ask us to handle those techie tasks and we’re all over it. But ask us to write a simple message, say, asking a client to send in content, and it’s a delete-and-repeat ordeal to finally get that email out the door.

Here’s the free email templates

We plan to create these free email templates that you can quickly copy and paste into a messages that address these common scenarios:

  • Getting Content
  • Your Site Was Hacked
  • Security Plan
  • Maintenance Plan
  • Checking In
  • Contract Renewals
  • Holding a Contest
  • Lead Outreach
  • Asking for Feedback
  • Onboarding Email
  • Screening Prospects
  • Apology

We’ll continue adding free email templates to this post as they’re created, so keep checking back to get the latest content. And if you think there’s a scenario we missed, drop us a line on the GoDaddy Pro Community. We’ll keep producing free email templates as they’re needed. And if you’re a fan of time-saving hacks like these, GoDaddy Pro is a tailor-made fit.

GoDaddy Pro saves you serious time

On average, our users report that GoDaddy Pro saves them three hours per month for each site they’re working on. And when you consider that most web pros work on multiple sites at once, we’re talking about some serious time reclaimed. It’s made possible by the Hub from GoDaddy Pro, a single-login interface where you can manage all your clients’ websites from one place. Right away, you can imagine how nice it would be to ditch the hassle of juggling all those FTP credentials.

Once you’ve added websites, mundane tasks like running updates and security checks stop eating away at your day as much. The Hub also helps you handle other time-consuming tasks like billing and managing the other products that contribute to your clients’ success.

Like our free email templates, GoDaddy Pro doesn’t cost a thing. If you haven’t already, hustle over there and sign up today.

Get yourself featured

Do you want to be featured on GoDaddy.com, show off your expertise to potential clients, connect with other web professionals, or get exclusive access to special GoDaddy projects and programs?

We’d love to have you as a GoDaddy Pro Community contributor! Get started here.

 

Problems with my email on Host Gator


Hi there,

All my emails from nick at mortgageinottawa.com go to people’s spam. I only send one monthly newsletter a month to 300 clients. This isn’t crazy spam, but I can’t fix anything and host gator email support keeps telling me it is fixed but isn’t.

Should I switch email from hostgator or website plus host gator altogether? Has anyone else had this problem? Any suggestions?

TIA

Using Proxies for Email Protection


Web proxies have been around for some time now. They can be used in many different ways and come with lots of variety. Even so, many businesses and professionals still don’t understand what they are about. Before we get into that, let’s first explain what proxies are.

Proxies are web servers that act as gateways between the internet user and the address they interact with. Simply put, when you connect online using a proxy, all of the information goes through the proxy before reaching its final destination.

Proxies act on behalf of the user – they are the buffer zone between you and the internet. But what actually happens when you go online, and how is it different when using proxies? Here’s what you need to know.

Understanding the Technology Behind Proxies

All computers online have their own unique IP addresses. Similarly to the addresses we have in the real world, each device online must have its own address. That’s how websites and other services know where they need to deliver some data.

A proxy is a separate computer server that also has an IP. When you make a web request, you send it to a proxy, and it makes the request to the targeted website instead of you. At the same time, the site doesn’t know who is the source of the request.

The proxy then collects the response, checks it, and sends the data back to the user. The data sent to you can be changed in different ways by the proxy. It can be encrypted and filtered to offer better protection.

The Business Application of Proxies

Proxies can be used by both individuals and businesses. However, companies can get greater benefits out of them and use them in many different ways. There are several ways companies are already using proxies. Here are some of them.

For Improving their security

Cybersecurity is a major issue today for both small and large companies. Every company does some business online because it just makes things easier. However, any data breach can cost a business a lot. It can jeopardize customer information, cause financial loss, and destroy the image of the business.

Since proxies hide IP addresses and give more privacy, companies can use it to reinforce their security. At the same time, they can protect their emails, which are one of the primary focuses of cyberattacks with phishing.

Balancing Traffic

Company websites can go down when they have a lot of traffic, losing who knows how much money on missed sales. Proxy servers can ensure this doesn’t happen through peering and cloud storage. Simply put, a proxy service provider can help store your content and traffic through multiple servers.

That way, you’ll be able to handle more traffic and requests. At the same time, all the servers are balanced so that there’s no site overload.

Web Scraping

Many companies rely on web scraping, which helps them gather important information online very quickly. However, sites block scrapers and prevent companies from doing this. Proxy servers can change addresses and unblock locked content to give unlimited scrapping.

Email Protection and Proxies

Since proxies are the first in line when you receive traffic or requests from the web, they can stop any potential email threats. They can help to recognize malicious messages, fake IP addresses, and spam email.

Additionally, some proxy server providers can detect malicious links within messages and prevent them from being sent to you. Even if someone from your business clicks on a malicious email, the hacker won’t be able to track your IP or get into your system as the proxy gives you anonymity and privacy.

In other words, they would be able to reach the proxy, but not your devices. That’s what makes them so effective for email protection. It gives you full control over your traffic, and you can even assign addresses you want to block. If you’re interested in proxies for email protection, we suggest checking Oxylabs’ website for more information.

Issues with Email Protection and its Importance

Companies worldwide rely on email to communicate internally, with their clients, and among themselves. That’s why they need to prevent anyone from eavesdropping on their conversations.

At the same time, they need to protect themselves from phishing attacks posing as clients. Numbers show that there’s still a lot of phishing attacks every year. It’s a common threat that needs to be faced head-on with proper email protection practices.

Conclusion

Email protection is an essential part of online security. It’s one of the most commonly used channels by companies, so if you want to prevent serious damages to your business, consider using a web proxy. Your whole bottom line and business growth depend on it.

Is it easy to switching my email to a different provider


My email host provider, FutureQuest.net, has been down since morning and they have provided little to no information. Comments range from are they out of business to speculation on ransomware to general disappointment. The absolute only place any one can find info on them is their Facebook page

https://www.facebook.com/FutureQuestNet/

Would it be easy to switch my email to someone else? Have had my email address over 25 years and want to keep it the same. My internet provider is Spectrum.

Benefits of professional email for business


Up your email game

Would you believe that 72 percent of consumers prefer communicating with your business via email? No longer do customers want to pick up the phone when they can directly connect with you in a few keystrokes — they simply don’t have the time or patience. Instead, they want to open their email client and send off a quick message … but what email address are you providing them? Friend, it’s time to look at professional email for business.

Think about this: Are they emailing yourcompany@gmail.com or companyname@yahoo.com, or are you providing them with a professional email? If you want increase your level of credibility and enhance your perception, then you need professional email for business.

Benefits of professional email for business

Check out three main benefits of using a professional email address for business:

  1. Your business is serious enough that you have your own website and email.

  2. People are much more likely to remember your domain name and your email address.

  3. You’re not advertising for another company.

I’ll add one more from my own experience in building email marketing campaigns for clients:
You legitimize your email marketing campaigns.

Let’s look at these in a deeper level of detail.

1. Your business is serious

Professional Email Business Inbox

Today, literally anyone can be a business owner. From the 9-year-olds on ABC’s Shark Tank to 80-year-old grandmothers who have finally found their true calling, the barriers to entry of entrepreneurship have diminished.

Of course, you might need some capital to buy a premium custom domain name. But with so many new, industry-specific domain extensions on the market, you’ve got plenty of domain options to fit just about any budget.

But from there, free tools exist to build up your digital presence.

Taking the ease of starting a business into consideration (and thus saturation in the market of hobby businesses and wantrepreneurs), it’s important to establish credibility with your leads and prospects. If you use an email address like mybusinessname@gmail.com, you can quickly diminish that credibility. To have your prospective customers take you seriously, you’ll want to set up professional email for business.

2. People are more likely to remember your professional email address

If consumers are already visiting your domain name (i.e. www.mycompanyname.com), it goes without saying they’d remember professional email for business that plays off that same domain. Instead of making them save mycompanynamesupport@yahoo.com, doesn’t it seem easier to use support@mycompanyname.com? The more they send emails to your domain, the more the brand is engrained in their minds, meaning you’re building brand resonance.

3. You’re not advertising for another company

The name of the game with all of your marketing correspondence is to be top of mind when the consumer has a product or service need that can be fulfilled by your business. If you use a generic email with an @yahoo.com or @comcast.net or @gmail.com domain, you are effectively advertising for those companies — sharing half of your brand with them and losing the battle of brand recall when the consumer needs your product or service. Reclaim that valuable advertising with your own professional email for business.

4. You legitimize your email marketing campaigns

If you are sending email marketing campaigns, the last place you want to land is the SPAM or Junk folder because your email contacts probably won’t see or read your email. To help prevent landing in SPAM, you can authenticate your email campaign with DKIM (DomainKeys Identified Mail).

Authentication is critical to the delivery of your email marketing campaign.

 

It provides a trackable identifier that demonstrates your legitimacy to your subscriber’s internet service provider, so your campaign arrives where it belongs: in the inbox.

Create professional email for business

Professional Email for Business GoDaddy

If you need professional email for business, there are just a few simple steps to take:

1. Buy a custom domain name.

Whether you buy your domain name from GoDaddy or another domain marketplace, you will need to have one of your own in order to tie it to a professional email address.

2. Set up your email account

If you are using GoDaddy’s Professional Email, you can create an account for a small monthly fee. If you opt to use a tool like Google’s G Suite, you are provided with a fast and easy wizard to build out your new account.

3. Complete your business profile.

Make sure you complete your entire profile including business name, domain name, and add a profile picture (usually your logo) so recipients can identify you.

4. Set up your professional email signature.

Your email signature is a mainstay in your account, so it deserves a little TLC. Following some of these email signature best practices will ensure you’re always putting your best digital foot forward.

Take a look at my simple yet effective email signature for some ideas:

Professional Email for Business Signature

Test before sending. Send test emails to yourself and a close friend or family member to see how they look on desktop, tablet, and mobile.

Update your business cards and marketing materials. Update your business cards right away because professional email for business adds prestige and credibility. When your existing marketing materials run low, be sure to change out for your updated email address.

Notice how I include my professional email address on my business card for those who would rather call than email:

Professional Email for Business Cards

Seven out of 10 of your leads, prospects and customers prefer to reach you via email. It’s a no-brainer that you need professional email for business. Follow the tips above, and you’ll increase credibility, enhance your brand perception, and be proud to hand out your new and improved business cards to everyone you meet.

Image by: Anete Lūsiņa on Unsplash

How email newsletters can help you promote your brand


Amplify your brand

Email newsletters have many advantages. They are affordable. They don’t take long to set up. They are quick to write and they are available to everyone. And these are just a few of the reasons why they should be part of your marketing toolbox.

With so many digital tools to turn to, the email newsletter might not be the most obvious choice. However, survey after survey shows that email newsletters are once again gaining popularity as an effective marketing tool.

How to promote your brand with email newsletters

With over 3 billion email users in the world and a worthwhile return on investment, it’s little wonder that email newsletters are becoming the go-to option for B2B businesses. With that in mind, in this article, you’ll find three ways to use email newsletters to promote your brand.

  1. Increasing web traffic with your email newsletter
  2. Promoting your brand and increasing revenues
  3. Promoting your blog

Let’s get started.

1. How to increase web traffic with email newsletters

Website Analytics on Tablet Represents Increasing Traffic Via Email Newsletters

Email newsletters are an effective way to increase organic website traffic. Regardless of the email content you include, linking your newsletter to your website directs traffic straight back to you, without depending on search engines or social media.

There are several ways you can drive traffic from your email newsletters to your website. These include:

Linking newsletter content to your website

Linking banner images, text and photographs in the body of your newsletter will create targeted traffic.

However, it’s important to remember that your newsletter shouldn’t serve as a catalog for your website. Instead, put direct links to your best-selling items or link to a demo video so your visitor can learn how to use a product.

Help your customer with their research

Consumers like to research before buying, so make this part easier for them. Linking your images and text to online information that can help inform the buying decision can make your potential customer more confident to buy.

Include a short blurb

Save your full story for your website and include a short blurb in your newsletter to create a non-product related talking point.

Promote your latest blog post

An approach favored by many marketers is to include an excerpt of their latest blog posts in their newsletter. This encourages readers to click through to the website, and once they are there, your reader is more likely to click on other areas of your website and perhaps make a purchase.

Related: How to write a great blog post 

Email Newsletters Blog Post On Laptop

Create compelling imagery

The use of strong, engaging imagery in your email newsletters is one of the secrets to getting your readers’ interest fast.

This is essential because newsletter readers tend to scan emails.

 

And according to Marketing Sherpa, you have just 15-20 seconds to capture their attention.

Related: How to optimize images for the web 

Use one-topic messaging

Marketing Sherpa suggest using the one-topic messaging approach in a newsletter for an improved response rate.

A focused newsletter with an article on a single topic can be just as effective as email newsletters that contain multiple pieces of content. This is especially important now, as more people are using smartphones and often read content on the go.

Feature/highlight a new product

Limited-time discounts can work well to create a sense of urgency and get visitors to your website. This approach could be used during seasonal times or during end-of-stock sales when you want to shift stock fast.

Related: How to use discounts and coupons to increase eCommerce revenue

Include relevant content

The more relevant your content is, the more likely readers are to respond to it. And if the content is relevant to your audience, then you’ll be driving qualified traffic to your website. More traffic over time could have a positive impact on your bottom line.

It can be relatively easy to get consumers to make one-off purchases.

However, if your business is going to thrive and gain customer loyalty, you need to focus on brand awareness.

Brand awareness can often be a deciding factor on whether a consumer buys from you, or whether they shop with one of your rivals.

The more you can communicate your core mission and main values, the more likely you are to gain a consumer’s trust. And the more aware shoppers are of your business, the more likely they are to keep coming back to you.

Sending out email newsletters can help you build better brand awareness. And an email newsletter is a great way to get your products right in front of your customers.

Here are some tips on how to build brand awareness and increase revenues through email newsletters.

Be consistent

Consistency should be the number one rule for anyone trying to establish their business and build a brand. Your website and newsletters colors should be the same and so should your writing style.

Consistency builds familiarity with your brand, and the more familiar a customer is, the more comfortable they’ll be buying from you.

Related: Everything you need to know about creating a brand style guide

Show your expertise

When you’re creating a newsletter or repurposing blog content, consider what you can do to show your expertise.

Think about the value you can provide your readers, or how your products can help them.

 

Anything that shows you’re an expert in your niche will make your brand more credible in your customer’s eyes.

Include calls-to-action

One of the aims of your newsletter content should be driving traffic to your website and getting sales. While a visitor won’t make a purchase every time, including a call-to-action will show your customers what you want them to do next.

Do you want them to click through to your website and view your latest products or your special offers? Do you want them to look at new products or to get a sneak preview of new stock? Then tell them!

And even if they don’t buy anything when they click through, they will be engaging with your brand and getting more familiar with it.

Let your customers take a peek behind the scenes

Allowing customers to look behind the scenes provides an insight that they would usually lack.

Seeing how your company works, how it selects products and how passionate your staff are about what they do can all help to develop a stronger relationship with your shoppers.

Video works well for this type of content, or you could consider a “day in the life” article with a lot of images.

Related: 9 types of video content to help move customers through the sales funnel

Share your story

Customers want to know who they’re buying from. Let them get to know your story and the story of your team.

An approach many companies adopt is to send out email newsletters that include employee profiles. This lets consumers feel like they know you a bit better and can make them feel happier to buy.

Create content your readers want to share

This could take the form of infographics, interactive content like quizzes and competitions or checklists. Interactive infographics are becoming increasingly popular among marketers and could really help your brand to stand out.

Consider offering a small gift like some free templates, a business checklist or similar. This will help incentivize readers to take part.

Related: How to make an online quiz

3. How to promote your blog with email newsletters

There are a variety of considerations when promoting your email newsletters. Here are a few to keep in mind.

Choose an email provider

Start by deciding which newsletter service you want to use.

Look for one that has a range of templates to make newsletter creation easier. When choosing templates, pick one that matches your brand as closely as possible, or import your own template for greater consistency.

Editor’s note: GoDaddy Email Marketing has a variety of professional templates that look great whether your readers are on desktops or smartphones.

Decide how often you’ll send out email newsletters

With your newsletter set up, decide how often you’ll send out newsletters to your subscribers. How often you send out your newsletter is up to you. However, you should understand your audience well enough to know whether they are keen for regular weekly updates, or if bi-weekly or monthly is enough.

But be sure not to wait too long between each one. You don’t want to give your readers a chance to forget about your brand.

Be sure to include a prominent unsubscribe link so your readers know they can opt-out whenever they wish. This is necessary in order to remain compliant with GDPR and CAN-SPAM laws.

Invite feedback

You should already engage with your readers through your blog comments — this fosters a relationship with your readers and promotes trust.

However, there are better ways of inviting feedback. Regular readers will have invested in your blog, newsletter and your brand. And they’ll love to give their opinion about the direction your blog is going in.

To gather feedback, use a tool like Survey Monkey to set up a poll through your newsletter. Invite your regular readers to tell you what they’d like to see and publish the results on your blog.

Related: What to include in a customer survey — and how to get customers to participate

An RSS to email service automatically fills out your newsletter template with your blog content. It’s a time-efficient way to promote your blog and keep your audience up to date with new content.

Be a content curator

Another easy way to fill out your newsletter template is through content curation. Curate content from your own blog, from related news from other blogs and newsletters or any guest posts you’ve written.

Make sure each snippet has a captivating image. The more striking an image is, the more likely readers are to click on a link that takes them to your blog.

Reuse old blog content

Old blog content can often suddenly become relevant again, so make use of archived blogs whenever the opportunity arises and repurpose archived blogs that newer subscribers won’t have read.

Newsletters are a simple way to get old blog content in front of a new audience. Include links to your older content at the end of your email newsletters. Alternatively, use snippets throughout to drive traffic back to your blog.

You could also consider having a featured blog from your archive. Or create a themed newsletter around prominent dates and special occasions.

Don’t forget the power of social media, and include “share” links with each blog post. When your readers click through from your newsletter, they’ll have the option of sharing content among a wider audience on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

This method is an effective means of newsletter promotion, while also promoting your blog.

Related: A beginner’s guide to social media for small business

Conclusion

Email marketing is far from dead. In fact, it has been making a strong comeback in recent years as many marketers and business owners realize its potential benefits.

When used effectively, email newsletters can increase revenue, build brand awareness, and increase web traffic. They can also promote your blog. All these factors can contribute to establishing a successful, long-term business and a loyal crowd of shoppers that keep coming back for more.

GoDaddy Email Marketing has professional templates to help you build the perfect newsletter to promote your brand.  Learn how to set up your first email marketing campaign today.

This article includes content originally published on the GoDaddy blog by the following authors: Emma Wilhelm, Kate Chittenden and Sally McGraw.

Image by: Oleg Laptev on Unsplash

How to prepare your email subscriber list for the holiday season


Get started early

Isn’t it hard to believe that the holiday season is upon us again? It feels like just a few weeks ago we were throwing off our sweaters and digging out sandals for the summer. Our snow shovels and winter hats have been collecting dust, unused and stored for cooler weather. It’s time to start pulling out the winter gear and, similarly, now’s the time to prepare your holiday email subscriber list.

Email marketing was responsible for a total of 24% of holiday sales during the 2018 holiday eCommerce season. That means email marketing alone brought in nearly $170 billion in revenue for businesses during November and December of 2018.

7 steps to prep your email subscriber list for the holiday season

So, before you gear up to send out your Black Friday messages, let’s get your email list and email strategy ready for holiday sales with these seven steps:

  1. Clean up your email subscriber list.
  2. Get new email subscribers.
  3. Build new email segments.
  4. Update and fine-tune your automations.
  5. Superpower your transactional messages.
  6. Mark important dates on your calendar.
  7. Make a plan for the holiday season.

Ready? Let’s jump in.

Gift-Wrapped Box Represents Holiday Email Planning

1. Clean up your email subscriber list

The first thing to do to get your email list ready for holiday promotions is to clean up and remove inactive subscribers.

Think of it like doing a deep clean before you start putting out the holiday decorations.

 

Start by segmenting your list into people who haven’t opened in more than 90 days. If you haven’t emailed in more than 90 days, then you’ll need to start with people who haven’t opened in the 90 days before that. It could even be up to a year since they last opened.

Next, you’ll send that group of subscribers a special series of emails to ask if they still want to hear from you.

These messages should be short and to the point.

 

You can use humor to encourage open rates if it works with your brand. Remember, your subject line is very important for these messages. They can’t click to stay on the list if the subject line doesn’t get them to even open the email.

Here are some sample subject lines:

  • Long time, no see!
  • Is this goodbye?
  • We miss you
  • Was it something we said?
  • Do you still want updates from us?

The content of these messages should be straight-forward with a single call-to-action: Click here to keep getting our messages.

Communicate the benefits of staying on the list, whether that’s access to exclusive sales, notifications about new products, or never missing an episode of a podcast or blog post.

Send at least three re-engagement messages to this segment of the list, removing anyone who did click to stay on the list from the segment.

After sending those three emails — if they never clicked to stay on the list, remove them. This might be painful if you’re focused on list size, but a smaller list size actually helps with your engagement and deliverability.

You’re paying to send them emails that are ending up in spam folders and trash bins, all while hurting your deliverability to the people who really want your messages.

Time to let them go.

Related: 6 holiday email campaign tactics to compete in crowded inboxes

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2. Get new email subscribers

After you’ve bid farewell to some unengaged subscribers, it’s time to build your list back up. You’ll do that in a few different ways, including collecting up all the subscribers you have across multiple systems, testing your email subscription forms for any leaks, and running campaigns to get more subscribers.

Let’s take a closer look at each of these processes below.

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Gather all your subscribers in one place

If you’re like most business owners, you’re collecting contact information from your customers in several different places, like your eCommerce system, your landing page software, your CRM, and even your social media accounts. Remember all those email addresses you collected when people wanted to join your Facebook group? Did those addresses actually make it to your email system?

Collect up all those email addresses that you have explicit permission to use, and add them to your email list.

Related: Beginner’s email marketing guide for small businesses

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Test your integrations and forms

Next up, test your integrations and forms to ensure that the people who are joining your list are actually making it onto your list. A good way to test is to use a special email address so you can track each form individually.

Rather than create a bunch of free accounts, you can modify your existing Gmail email address, for example, and still check whether or not you receive your test messages. To illustrate this, your email address might be hikingfan@gmail.com. You can add a plus sign after the first half (before the @ symbol), and any words you want after, ending up with something like hikingfan+reddit@gmail.com.

This is really handy if you’ve got several different lead magnets or signup forms to test. Examples of these test addresses might look like this:

  • hikingfan+footerform@gmail.com
  • hikingfan+popup@gmail.com
  • hikingfan+leadmagnetA@gmail.com
  • hikingfan+leadmagnetB@gmail.com

Just don’t forget to delete all of those dummy subscribers after you’re done testing!

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Ask to be whitelisted (or ask for a reply!)

One way to get your subscriber list ready for the holiday is to ask your new subscribers to whitelist your email address or add you to their address book.

Another way to get whitelisted is to have them reply to an email from you. Most ISPs will automatically add an email address to the address book when you’ve sent them an email. By simply asking a question — like “What is the biggest problem you’re facing” or “Which is your favorite style” and asking for a reply (instead of a click), you can improve your deliverability, strengthen your relationship with your subscribers, and get some customer feedback all at the same time.

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Re-share your opt-in to encourage new subscribers

Once you’re sure that your opt-in is running like a well-oiled machine, it’s time to share it with the world to get even more subscribers. Here are a few ways you can share your opt-in to get new subscribers.

Share on your social media profiles

This includes Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. You can share as a post as well as in your header image.

Related: A beginner’s guide to social media for small business

Post in related and appropriate Facebook Groups (as allowed)

If you’re a member of a Facebook group that allows promotions, share your free opt-in.

Related: Make social media and email marketing work together

Pin it

Pinterest can be a massive traffic generator, especially around the holiday season. As a matter of fact, 72% of pinners say Pinterest inspires them to shop when they aren’t actually looking for anything. Your freebie can be just the hook they need to start buying from you.

Update your website

If you’re already promoting your website on social channels and ad campaigns, make sure your opt-in lead magnet is easy to spot. If you’re looking for ideas to promote your lead magnet, check out 70+ ways to promote your email opt-in.

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Pair up for a collaboration

The holiday season is also a great time to partner up with other businesses that have similar client profiles. You can create a collaborative product, or simply promote each other’s products to your own lists.

Remember — you can’t exchange email subscriber lists (that’s strictly against CAN-SPAM regulations), but you can certainly tell your customers how great the other person’s products and services are.

Another great option is to create a buyer’s guide that includes products from multiple businesses. You can create it once, and then have everyone share it because their products are featured!

Related: How to make a buyer’s guide

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Ask for referrals

Another easy way to build your email list is to ask your existing customers to invite their friends to shop with and buy from you. We all have an innate desire to display what we’ve learned, found, and discovered.

One of the best ways to encourage your customers to share is to give them something to give, and something to keep.

This can be a special offer for each of them, including a discount for their purchase, free shipping or even a gift with purchase.

Asking for referrals doesn’t just have to be for the holiday season. You can build an automation system that works with a specific segment, like automatically asking for the referral after someone makes their fifth purchase.

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Red Bow Gift Box Illustrates Holiday Email Campaign

3. Build new email segments

Now that your list is clean, and you’re beginning to grow your subscriber list, it’s time to dig into your email system and build new email segments.

An email segment is a collection of people from your email list who meet certain criteria.

 

Here are some of the most popular segments in eCommerce marketing, and what they mean:

  • Big spenders: These are the people who have purchased the most from you — often the top 5% to 10%. You can target these customers with new product releases and higher-priced products.
  • New customers: New customers are the ones who have made their first purchase from you in the last 30 days. It’s nice to reward them for buying from you with a special offer on their next purchase.
  • Churning customers: These are customers who have purchased from you more than once, but who haven’t purchased in an extended period of time — often 60 to 90 days. Verify these timeframes against your average customer buying behaviors. Use a win-back campaign with a special offer, like a free gift with purchase or free shipping, to get them back into buying.
  • Frequent buyers: Frequent buyers might not always be big spenders. They’re often looking for something new or exciting, so send them your latest and greatest!
  • Specific category buyers: Depending on what you’re selling, you may have categories that appeal to specific customer groups. A great example is a clothing retailer that sells for both men and women. You can segment people who purchase only one type or the other and target your promotions accordingly.
  • Customers by region: When it comes to holiday-centered segments, it can be helpful to group customers into geographic areas, which is especially useful if you’re going to have shipping deadlines. This way, you can tailor your emails to warn of upcoming cutoff dates for holiday orders.

Of course, these don’t have to be the only segments you create! Your creativity is only limited by the capabilities of your email service provider.

Related: Using customer segments to build lasting relationships

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4. Update and fine-tune your automations

This isn’t directly related to your list prep for holiday promotions, but it’s a really important element of your overall email marketing strategy.

Set aside some time to review all of your running automations and transactional messages to ensure that they’re up-to-date, and helping to drive improved conversion rates.

Automations and funnels are a series of emails that are sent based on a customer’s activities on your website or in your email list. They’re triggered when someone takes those specific actions that you’ve defined.

A good example of an automation, or funnel, is your welcome series or an upsell series of emails after someone buys a smaller product. When you’re reviewing these, make sure they’ve got relevant dates and offers that align with your upcoming holiday promotions.

And don’t forget to check your links!

Before launching your holiday promotions is a great time to build upsell and cross-sell automated messages. Cross-sell products fit into the category of “People who bought this also bought,” while upsells are often accessories and services related to what they bought.

These messages help your customers fill their holiday gift bags and stockings with goodies from your store, based on what they already know and love.

Plus, those automated messages can help you sell more year-round!

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5. Superpower your transactional messages

Transactional messages are also emails that are sent based on someone’s activity. The difference is that they’re related to their specific shopping and purchasing activities.

Transactional emails include order confirmation messages, shipping confirmation, and delivery confirmation. It can also include abandoned cart emails.

If you’re not already sending abandoned cart emails, this is the time to turn them on. An estimated 70% to 80% of eCommerce shopping carts are abandoned, and abandoned cart emails can recover anywhere from 3% to 12% of those transactions.

Not sure how those numbers affect you? Here’s how that could impact your bottom line:

  • Completed orders per month: 100
  • Average order size: $100
  • Estimated abandoned carts (75%): 300 cards abandoned
  • Abandoned Revenue: $300,000
  • Recovered Revenue (3%): $9,000

And if you think your transactional emails have to be 100%-related to their current purchase, think again! In these messages, you can include cross-sells (other products that customers who have purchased this have also bought) and upsells (including accessories and services related to their new product purchase).

Your transactional messages are also a great place to remind your customers of deadlines, like the last day for ground shipping in time for holiday delivery.

Related: Upselling and cross-selling techniques for online stores

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6. Mark important dates on your calendar

Speaking of dates, the last thing you’ll need to do to get your email marketing strategy ready for the holiday season is to mark important dates on your calendar — including anything you need to do for those dates, like update messages in your automations and transactional messages.

As an example, in your abandoned cart email, you may add some text or a graphic with your shipping deadlines for holiday delivery, simply as a gentle nudge to remind someone that they don’t have a lot of time if they’re planning on gift-giving.

After that initial deadline has passed, you’ll want to update that text and graphics to promote expedited shipping. And if all the shipping deadlines have passed, then you may want to promote a gift card instead.

And when the holidays are over, don’t forget to take all those mentions back out of your automated emails and transactional messages!

Set a reminder now in your favorite task management system or on your calendar.

 

It’s easy to think now that you won’t forget it, but after the hustle and bustle of the holidays, updating those messages will likely be the last thing on your mind.

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7. Make a plan for the holiday season

Tying into marking important dates on your calendar, making a plan for your holiday emails benefits both you and your subscriber list. You’ll be less stressed about meeting your deadlines, and your list will get well put-together emails with plenty of time to make their shopping deadlines.

Things to include in your plan:

Shipping deadlines

One of the biggest challenges around the holidays is shipping deadlines. If your deadlines are too early in the season, you might miss some of those impulse buyers. On the other hand, if they’re too late, then you run the risk of a shipping delay ruining the customer’s holidays.

Related: Tips and tricks that make shipping easy for small eCommerce businesses

Sales and special offers

While most people are always bargain hunting, holiday shopping brings out the hunters in all of us. By planning your sales, you can encourage customers to purchase earlier in the holiday season — reducing your stress in processing orders and reaching your goals, and their stress in making sure that their gifts arrive on time.

Related: How to use discounts and coupons to increase eCommerce sales

Last chance

Some of the most important dates in your holiday planning are the last chance to arrive for the holidays. You’ll need to factor in production time and shipping time for all of your shipping methods.

Related: 5 things you must do now to prepare for the holiday shopping season

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Wrapping it all up

There you have it! Seven things you can do right now to get your email list and strategy ready for holiday marketing. Of course, these tips aren’t just great for the winter holidays. You can use them for any holiday that resonates with your business, from Valentine’s Day to Mother’s Day and beyond. Happy holidays, indeed!

Image by: David Beale on Unsplash

The 5 Black Friday email campaigns your e-store must send


This isn’t exactly a groundbreaking revelation—but Black Friday and Cyber Monday (BFCM) are an enormous, critical time of year for eCommerce businesses. One study found Black Friday generated 3.6 times more eCommerce orders than the average day, and Cyber Monday generated 3.1 times more.

And with that, BFCM is also peak season for email marketing. There’s an increase of more than 50 percent in email volume on and around BFCM—it begins around 10 days before Thanksgiving and extends until Cyber Monday.

Again, none of this is exactly shocking, but it’s worth reiterating—because it means that your store will need to find a way to stand out in the huge sea of emails and once-a-year super sales. And the areas where your email marketing can stand out is in your automations and personalizations.

As stores plan their BFCM email marketing, the focus tends to go to the big promotional emails—the ones that go out advertising your amazing and rare deals, your exclusive products, and your can’t-miss gift ideas. But there’s far more to email marketing, especially in the competitive holiday season, than just blasting out those sales announcements to your entire list and calling it a wrap.

By tailoring your automated emails to the holidays and using clever personalization and segmentation, you can help your emails stand out from the BFCM pack. In this article, we’ll cover five different email campaigns you can set up for your eCommerce store during BFCM and the holidays to maximize your sales and even turn one-time holiday shoppers into repeat fans.

1. Abandoned cart recovery emails

As your store gets more website visitors and shoppers during the holidays, you’ll also get more abandoned carts. A study found the cart abandonment rate jumps to nearly 75 percent on Black Friday—meaning that for every 100 orders you receive, there are roughly 300 people who went to your site, added something to their cart, but didn’t check out. At Jilt, we’ve found it’s possible to recover around 12 percent of those carts with our standard cart recovery email templates, and 15 to 20 percent of those carts with some tweaks. Based on our example of 100 orders a month, that’s anywhere from 36 to 60 extra orders, without you having to do anything beyond a one-time set-up.

You may already have an abandoned cart series in place, but if you tweak it to capitalize on the holidays, it can be even more effective for you.

  • Timing. With a normal abandoned cart email series, most stores will wait up to 24 hours to send an initial, “Hey, you left something behind!” email. On the big shopping holidays, you’ll want to shorten that window. After all, you want to grab people while they already have their wallets open and they’re doing their Black Friday or Cyber Monday shopping. So while you don’t want to send the abandoned cart email within minutes of the customer leaving your site, consider a window of just a few hours. 
  • Set the ticking clock on deals. Your BFCM abandoned cart email should make it clear your sale prices aren’t permanent—in fact, prices are going to return to normal very, very soon. Create a sense of urgency by reminding the customer of when the price will jump and what the price will jump to if they don’t return to your site—you can even use a countdown clock in the email to further drive home the point that they need to return to checkout fast.
  • Create a sense of scarcity. Everyone has an implicit understanding that things sell out quickly on BFCM—it’s why people will line up for days outside of Best Buy to try to get a $12 DVD player. So make sure to spotlight the scarcity in your abandoned cart recovery email. Let the customer know that if they don’t return to your site ASAP to checkout, someone else might take advantage of your once-a-year deal and snap the product up first.

Here’s an example of an interesting seasonal cart abandonment email from Tarte Cosmetics. Normally, cart abandonment emails will focus specifically on the products a person left behind. But here, Tarte went with an entirely different approach: They use a standard cart abandonment subject line (“You Forgot to Checkout!”), but the body of the email exclusively focuses on their huge holiday sale.

Via: Milled.

2. Welcome emails

A lot of new customers will buy from you during the holidays. A welcome email, or welcome email series, is a great way to start turning them from one-time seasonal shoppers into repeat customers and loyal fans. 

  • Introduce your company.  People, especially millennials, care about who they’re buying from. (A study found seven out of 10 millennials, and 52 percent of all adults, consider a company’s values when they make a purchase.) Use your welcome email to introduce your company and show off its values. That will help begin to build your relationship with the customer beyond just the one-off purchase.
  • Reiterate what they’ll get for subscribing. A welcome email is different than an order receipt or confirmation—it’s not about the nuts-and-bolts of a transaction, it’s about the beginning of a customer’s journey with your brand. Use your welcome email to clearly lay out what customers can expect from your emails in the future, from good content to future discounts and perks.
  • Bring them back for more holiday shopping. There’s no reason you can’t turn a new customer into a repeat customer immediately. Tailor your welcome emails over BFCM to the holidays through graphics and copy. Point people toward gift ideas in your store, add-ons to products they’ve already purchased from you, and your ongoing seasonal discounts. Or invite them to join your VIP program by advertising the benefits of membership for the rest of the holiday season and beyond.

Here’s an example of Old Navy’s welcome email from the 2018 BFCM season. It uses seasonal graphics, tells a new customer the future benefits of subscribing from the list, focuses heavily on the gift-giving angle, and even offers a special discount to encourage the person to come back immediately.

3. Order receipts and shipping confirmations

Your order receipts and shipping confirmations may be rather straightforward emails—they give a customer the key details of their transaction and little else. That’s their primary function, and one that shouldn’t be neglected. However, during the holidays, you can use your receipts and confirmations to show off your customer service—which can help quell some of the inevitable uneasiness that comes from ordering gifts online.

  • Prominently feature shipping estimates. The biggest thing people want to know about their holiday purchases is: When are they going to show up at my house? Feature that information prominently. And don’t be afraid to send multiple emails: Your order has been received, your order has been processed, your order has been shipped, etc. Your customers want those emails for peace-of-mind.
  • Spotlight your return policy. What if someone gets their order and it isn’t quite right? Will they have time to return it and get a replacement? And if the person who receives their gift doesn’t like it, will they still be able to return it after Christmas, even though that could be more than 30 days after they ordered it on BFCM? Use your transactional emails to spotlight customer service options, shipping speeds on returns and replacements, and your return policy. Even if a customer doesn’t need to return something, just by showing off your generous return policy and customer-centric thought process, you’re sending signals that you’re a company with whom they should continue to do business.
  • Consider cross-selling related products. Under the U.S. CAN-SPAM Act, retailers can include some promotional content in transactional emails like receipts and shipping confirmations—as long as the promotional content comes after the important business info and doesn’t make up the majority of the email. So, to that end, you might want to consider putting a few related products in your receipts and shipping confirmation (and, of course, note how quickly the person will receive those products if they order them too). One study found that transactional emails have excellent open rates of around 45 percent (more than double non-transactional emails), so with all those eyeballs on these emails, they can be a good chance to do a little bit of selling.

4. VIP and loyalty emails

One way your email marketing can stand out during BFCM is through targeted emails to your best customers. 

  • Give VIPs early access. BFCM brings a scarcity mentality—customers feel like they’re in a competition with each other to get the best deals from stores. By sending an email to your VIP customers offering them early access to your BFCM deals, you can bring them to your store in the days leading up to the holidays and get them to buy immediately, while at the same time making them feel appreciated and incentivized to do so. It’s a win-win.
  • Make a special offer. There’s no shortage of sales during BFCM, but you can stand out to your repeat customers by making them a special offer. It doesn’t necessarily need to be a larger discount (say, 35 percent off instead of the 30 percent off you’ve offered the public-at-large). It can be something additive as well, like a free gift for spending at least $100. That will make your VIP customers feel special (building further loyalty) and encourage them to spend more.
  • Take advantage of last-minute shoppers. One incentive you can offer your loyal customers is free last-minute express shipping after they hit a certain spending threshold. That shows you’re looking out for the procrastinators out there, and also encourages them to shop at your eCommerce store, rather than going to a brick-and-mortar store, for their emergency December 21st gift buying. 

Here’s another approach that Withings took with their Black Friday email. They offered their VIP customers a shot at getting their discount after Black Friday—that’s a clever way to take the Black Friday discount they offered to everyone and turn it into a VIP perk that can drive even more sales.

Via: Really Good Emails.

5. Segmented and personalized offers

Segmentation and personalization are powerful ways to drive more sales. Segmented emails bring in 760 percent more revenue than non-segmented campaigns, and personalized emails generate six times higher transaction rates and more revenue per email. Even though your BFCM deals are, most likely, deals you want to advertise to your entire email list, you can still use segmentation and personalization to encourage customers to take advantage of those deals.

  • Upsell related add-ons. You can set up automated emails so if someone buys a specific product, they’ll automatically receive an email suggesting they buy some add-ons. For instance, if you sell printers and someone buys a printer, they’d get an email advertising ink, paper, and USB cables.
  • Add personalized offers to your big sales announcements. While there are certainly some products you’ll want to promote to everyone, you can include personalized product recommendations and offers in emails to different customers. That’s a good way to stand out in the BFCM email rush—you’re not just offering a sale, you’re offering a sale specifically for them.
  • Segment your list for your sales announcements. Your sales announcements don’t have to be one size fits all. You can create slightly different versions of the email and send it to different segments of your list. For example, if you sell men’s and women’s clothing, you can segment your list by gender so male customers get a version of the email advertising men’s products, and female customers get a version of the email advertising women’s products.

Key takeaways

Black Friday and Cyber Monday are a huge time of year for email marketing—so it can be tough to stand out. One great way to do so is by focusing on things like automation and personalization, not just your big sales announcements. 

  • Abandoned cart recovery emails. Tailor your recovery emails to the season, focusing on the very real senses of urgency and scarcity to bring customers back to your store.
  • Welcome emails. Welcome new customers and begin the journey of turning them into repeat customers—potentially even repeat customers during this holiday season.
  • Receipts and confirmations. Show off your customer service and give your customers peace of mind by eliminating any ambiguity with shipping dates and explicitly stating your return policy.
  • VIP and loyalty emails. Reward your VIPs with early access and special offers. It’s a win-win: You encourage them to come to your store and spend a lot, and they feel incentivized and appreciated.
  • Segmentation and personalization. Upsell related products, add personal recommendations to your big sales emails, and even segment your sales announcements to make sure the right people are seeing relevant offers.

This was the second installment of our Black Friday series. Eager for more tips on optimizing your ecommerce performance? Stay tuned for more posts just like this one featuring industry experts and some of our technical partners. Learn how to improve your website design, conversions, online marketing, and more.  

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