By Neil Patel
Email is one of the best ways to communicate with your customers.
Sending confirmation emails can help establish a stronger relationship with your current clientele.
It keeps them in the loop.
They won’t have to second-guess whether their order went through or whether an action they completed was successful.
That’s why all companies need to utilize confirmation emails.
For starters, if you’re not sending confirmation messages, you need to start ASAP.
But for those of you who already use this communication strategy, here is the question: what does the content of your message say?
If the email is just a simple receipt, you’re not using this marketing tactic to its full potential.
Receipts aren’t enough and won’t squeeze any additional dollars out of the customer.
Think about your current email marketing campaigns.
For your marketing to be successful, your subscribers need to open the message and click on something in it.
What are your current open rates and CTRs?
Those numbers drastically improve for confirmation emails compared to bulk marketing campaigns.
That’s why this is such a great opportunity from a marketing perspective.
Now is the perfect chance for you to send a promotional email in addition to a confirmation email.
I’ve had lots of success using this strategy, and I’ve helped other companies increase their revenues through confirmation emails as well.
I’ll show you how to accomplish this too.
Always send welcome messages to new subscribers
Let’s start at the very beginning.
Don’t wait for your next newsletter or promotional message to contact a new subscriber.
If you do that, it could be over a week or two before this person hears from you.
Send them a welcome message as soon as they sign up.
Since they just provided you with their email address, your brand is fresh in their minds.
This early confirmation is a great chance to encourage a sale or some other action like a download.
Welcome messages are also necessary if you have a double opt-in strategy in place.
I like using double opt-in landings because it helps eliminate fake email addresses from your subscriber list.
This ultimately leads to higher engagement from the recipients and makes your marketing analytics much more accurate.
Just look at how a double opt-in welcome message affects your open rates:
Now that you’ve got the new subscriber to open your message, it’s your chance to make some money.
- Promote your newest product or service.
- Explain how your brand can add value to the customer.
- Give them other incentives like free shipping or an easy return process.
- Offer a discount. They work well too. Everyone loves to get a deal.
Let’s say you have an ecommerce store.
If someone signs up for your email subscription list, it’s safe to say they have some genuine interest in buying something.
Well, a welcome email confirmation offering a discount could just be the determining factor that turns a subscriber into a customer.
Here’s a great example of this strategy from GAP:
Notice that the offer is valid only for 30 days.
Making your promotional offer time sensitive is also a good way to encourage a sale.
Get your subscribers used to confirmation emails by sending them one right off the bat with a welcome message.
Remind shoppers about their abandoned shopping carts
It happens to everyone with an ecommerce site.
Customers browse for items online, add products to their carts, but never complete the checkout process.
This is disheartening.
Oftentimes, the shopper was only a click or two away from making a purchase.
Just because the cart was abandoned doesn’t mean you need to give up on that sale.
If a customer was browsing on their unique customer profile from your website, you’ll have their email address on file.
Otherwise, they may have provided you with their email address as one of the earlier steps in the checkout process before they abandoned the cart.
Some of the top reasons for cart abandonment include:
- unexpected costs (like taxes, shipping, or other fees)
- overall price is too high
- shopper was just browsing
- problems with the website
- they found a better price somewhere else
- process is too complicated
- security concerns
If it appears the price was the reason why this individual didn’t complete the ordering process, send them an email with a discount or another promotion.
Look at how Kate Spade New York accomplishes this with their cart abandonment messages:
Now the customer has an added incentive to buy.
They were already interested in those products in the first place, so the discount can really be the determining factor that finalizes the sale.
After they finish checking out their online cart, they’ll continue to get more confirmation emails from you, which I’ll discuss shortly.
Consider this statistic: 69.23% of online shopping carts get abandoned.
If your abandonment rate is high, you can still squeeze money out of those carts through confirmation messages.
Keep the customer updated once they place an order
As I just mentioned, the confirmation emails don’t stop when a customer places their order.
You need to keep them updated throughout the entire process.
Each step is an excuse for you to send another message.
The customer will like these messages as well since they are receiving valuable information about their purchase.
Every time something gets bought online, you have an excuse to send four confirmation emails to the customer, in this order:
The order confirmation message is simple. This will be their receipt. You can include the order number, items, and pricing breakdown.
But it can be more than just a receipt. You can also promote other products as Target does with this confirmation:
When the package gets picked up from your warehouse and the shipping process starts, send them another email with the shipping carrier and tracking information.
Send another message once the package gets delivered.
People aren’t always home all day. So this email will be exciting.
They know there’s something waiting for them when they get home from work.
Or they can make arrangements for a friend or family member to grab the package if they aren’t going to be home for a while.
Finally, a week or so after the order gets delivered, you can send them a follow-up message.
Include a survey, and ask for their feedback.
You want to find out if they were happy with the ordering process and ultimately if they are satisfied with your product.
This final message in the drip sequence accomplishes a few things. It:
- lets the customer know you care about their opinion
- provides them with information about your product and process
- increases engagement
- serves as an excuse to send another confirmation email
Here’s the catch, however.
All four of the messages you just sent to the customer after they placed an order need to be more than just their obvious value.
Include promotional content as well, just like Target did in the above example.
Offer a discount.
Tiny Prints does this with their confirmation emails:
Additional discounts give the customer a reason to become a repeat customer.
It helps you squeeze more dollars out of one person.
Upsell and cross-sell
As you can see from some of the examples we’ve already looked at, upselling and cross-selling methods can be incorporated into these confirmation emails as well.
Upselling encourages the customer to buy something similar to the product they have but at a higher price point.
Cross-selling promotes other products related to the item the customer just purchased.
For example, let’s say a customer bought a pair of headphones or some other electronic device, like a tablet or computer, from your ecommerce store.
When you’re sending the drip campaign of emails to keep them updated about their order, one of those messages can contain a cross-selling strategy.
Offer them a protective case or travel bag to keep their new product safe.
Any accessory compatible with what they just bought is worth including in these confirmation emails.
It’s a great way to increase profits, especially because you’re marketing to an existing customer.
It’s easier to sell to repeat customers:
Furthermore, loyal customers spend three to five times more money each purchase.
So you’re definitely pitching to the right crowd here if you’re offering an upsell or cross-sell promotion.
Encourage social sharing to gain referrals
The person receiving your confirmation emails shouldn’t be the only person you’re trying to squeeze more money out of.
These people have friends and family members who could potentially be valuable sources of revenue as well.
You just need to make them aware of your brand.
That’s why you need to encourage your subscribers to share your content.
If you’re sending a discount in your confirmation message, include a share link for social media websites like Facebook or Twitter.
You can also have the recipient forward the message directly to their friends.
But not everyone will do this out of the kindness of their hearts.
Even if they really love your brand, they may not go out of their way to potentially spam their friends.
You need to give them something in return.
Check out this order confirmation email from Grubhub:
If they refer a friend to Grubhub, they’ll get $7.
It’s simple and effective.
Now you’re getting extra revenue from more than just one person.
The customer who made the referral is very likely to buy from you again since they’ll want to cash in their discount or reward.
Plus, you’re acquiring new customers and adding more subscribers to your list from the people they are referring.
And guess what?
As we discussed, new subscribers will also get a welcome message from you to confirm their subscription.
It’s a cycle that works.
Every email that gets sent out to customers needs to be strategic.
While you may want to send your customers a promotional message every day to encourage sales, subscribers don’t want that.
In fact, getting too many emails is the number one reason why consumers unsubscribe from email lists.
You need to make the most out of every message you’re able to send.
Confirmation emails are the perfect way to disguise promotional offers.
The data we looked at earlier told us that confirmation messages have higher open rates and click-through rates than other types of emails.
You should always send a welcome message to new subscribers to confirm they’ve been added to your email list.
If you have an ecommerce store and customers are abandoning their shopping carts, it doesn’t mean that sale is lost.
Send a cart abandonment reminder email with a discount as an incentive for the customer to complete the checkout process.
After customers buy something, keep them up to date with confirmation messages about the status of their orders.
Let them know when the orders ship and when they get delivered.
All of these confirmation messages are a great opportunity to upsell and cross-sell.
You can also encourage your subscribers to share these promotions with friends and family as a way to acquire more customers and make more money.
What types of promotions do you offer in your confirmation emails to encourage customers to spend more money on their next purchases?