3 Types of Ecommerce Companies That Are Winning At Email

CM Commerce Team

There are several types of ecommerce business models. One of the most common, especially for small to medium enterprises (SMEs), is the business-to-consumer (B2C) setup.

How useful is email marketing to ventures like these? When it comes to cultivating a larger audience, marketing emails are a must.

Emails may seem almost archaic to some audiences. However, global statistics confirm that 3.9 billion people use email actively, compared to 3.5 billion using social media.

What types of ecommerce companies would benefit from email marketing?

On average, repeat visitors are responsible for about one-third of site traffic recorded on ecommerce business websites. How do ecommerce ventures entice customers to come back, especially after their first purchase? Through email marketing.

Read on to discover three types of ecommerce companies that can benefit from well-run email marketing campaigns.

1. Subscription box services

The subscription box industry is fiercely competitive and still growing very quickly. The idea of a subscription service dates back to the 1920s when the Book of the Month Club began sending out products through the post. The Club continues to operate to this day, retooled as a type of ecommerce subscription box company.

This popular product delivery method can support a wide range of product segments—from fashion and beauty to health and wellness and many more. Most subscription businesses focus on either new product discovery or user convenience. They often offer one-time, monthly, or bi-monthly box deliveries.

2. Wholesale or dropship retailers

Online boutiques selling a variety of products from different brands are most likely buying wholesale or working with a dropshipping supplier.

Wholesale is a simple buy-and-sell. You purchase products in bulk from one or several suppliers and then resell them at a higher price. Dropshipping, unlike wholesaling, doesn’t require you to own a stockroom or manage inventory. Instead, your business transfers customer orders and shipment details to suppliers, which then take care of direct shipping.

3. Private or white label businesses

If your company is selling products under your brand, you’re likely engaging in either white labeling or private labeling. This is popular with many types of ecommerce health and wellness brands, as well as fashion brands.

You can always create all of your products in-house. However, this method is often not as cost-effective for smaller businesses as it is for large-scale operations that can afford to maintain their own manufacturing facilities.

White labeling is when you buy an already developed product from a supplier and form a partnership that allows you to sell it as your branded item. Private labeling is when you pay a manufacturer to create a product for your brand with your specifications in mind.

What types of emails belong in ecommerce company digital marketing campaigns?

To be a successful ecommerce brand, you must build authentic customer relationships. It’s also important to craft a voice and identity that accurately represents your company values.

It’s worth using an ecommerce email marketing solution like CM Commerce. With it, you can make every customer interaction more personal, more productive, and better overall.

Below are several email examples that can be integral parts of digital marketing campaigns for different types of ecommerce companies.

1. Welcome emails

Every email marketer is familiar with the welcome email. Compared to other marketing emails, welcome emails enjoy high open rates—more than 91%—and above-average click-through rates.

On the surface, a welcome email greets new email subscribers and introduces them to your brand. As part of a well-executed email campaign, a welcome email can be the start of a long-term relationship with your subscribers. Email marketing can encourage them to be loyal customers and supporters that are in for the long haul.

Beardbrand email showing an example of a welcome message and email drip campaign beginning

Source: Really Good Emails

Beardbrand is a men’s health and wellness company that focuses on hair and skin care products. This Beardbrand welcome email is simple and inviting. It’s also informative and indicative of the brand’s passion and personality.

Bonus: If you look closely, this marketing email is also an example of how to begin an email drip campaign.

2. Referral emails

After you’ve successfully converted your email subscribers to customers, what’s next? Apart from being a revenue source, your customer base can also provide new leads.

Satisfied customers may spread the word on their own, but it always helps to give them an incentive to promote your business. Consider running a referral program by using an email marketing campaign.

Maude email showing an example of a referral program message

Source: Really Good Emails

Did you know that the average person is four times more likely to purchase something if it’s referred by a friend?

Above, we’ve provided a referral email example from Maude, a sexual health and wellness company. Personal Referrals work especially well for this brand because of the intimate and taboo nature of some of its most popular products.

3. Re-engagement emails

Why are re-engagement emails essential to nearly all types of ecommerce companies? Because the cost of gaining a new customer is about five times more than maintaining a relationship with an existing one.

Reach out to inactive customers, especially those who’ve displayed loyalty in the past. Strengthen the connection by offering something of value. The goal is to keep them interested and consistently invested in upcoming news about your brand and products.

 Blue Apron email showing an example of a re-engagement message

Source: Really Good Emails

Blue Apron is a meal delivery service with a subscription box-like structure. The brand routinely sends out reactivation emails—like the one above—to existing customers with expired meal plans.

4. Promotional emails

Coupons, discounts, sales, special offers—each of these may be the core component of a promotional email for many types of ecommerce companies. Email marketing like this is the most direct, but can also be the trickiest to manage, depending on the average age of your subscribers.

Most millennials and Gen Z buyers find obviously promotional content annoying. However, over 65% of millennials also confirm that promotional emails occasionally affect their buying behavior.

 Rifle Paper Co. email showing an example of a BOGO-themed promotional message

Source: Really Good Emails

Rifle Paper Co. is a lifestyle brand that sells paper products and everyday personal accessories like drinkware and phone cases. Their promotional email above is an example of a buy-one-get-one (BOGO) promotion.

BOGO is a great campaign choice for companies wanting to turn a profit and provide value to customers while clearing out inventory that’s otherwise not moving. It’s also a clever way to promote more sales without decreasing prices.

CM Commerce has advanced segmentation and automation tools that can not only help you build BOGO promotions, but also send offers like these only to customers most likely to appreciate them.

5. Abandoned cart emails

Up to 80% of shopping carts online get abandoned. It can be frustrating to see full carts that don’t make it to checkout, but it’s not hard to imagine how this happens. The internet is full of distractions, not to mention countless other types of ecommerce ventures vying for attention.

Abandoned cart emails are a popular tool for digital marketing campaigns because they’re easy to automate. They also target subscribers who’ve already expressed a concrete interest in buying your products. Most email marketers add an extra element—cross-selling options, small discounts, etc.—to encourage people to complete their purchase.

Adidas email showing an example of an abandoned cart message with real customer reviews

Source: Really Good Emails

A section featuring product reviews from other customers is another great addition to abandoned cart emails. You can see how effective and convincing product reviews are in this cart abandonment email from Adidas.

CM Commerce offers review provider integrations, as well as strong product review functionalities that can create emails like this for your brand.

6. Upsell or cross-sell emails

Email marketing doesn’t stop with a completed purchase. You can upsell or cross-sell within a purchase confirmation email to further target a customer already interested in your products.

Upselling pushes an upgrade of a product in the customer’s cart. It could be a similar offering in a limited-edition color or with added features. Cross-selling pushes other products that are complementary to the ones in the customer’s cart.

Dollar Shave Club email showing an example of a purchase confirmation message with cross-selling

Source: Really Good Emails

The Dollar Shave Club cross-sells sensible add-ons in its purchase confirmation emails. Keen eyes will also spot a link to a referral program.

Similar to what’s shown above, CM Commerce has tools that provide personalized cross-sell and upsell sections in email receipts.

Wrap up

For many types of ecommerce companies, particularly those that follow the B2C model, digital marketing is as essential as product or brand development.

Here are some examples of ecommerce ventures that can benefit from effective email marketing campaigns:

  • Subscription box services
  • Wholesale or dropship retailers
  • Private or while label businesses

Marketing emails keep subscribers engaged and informed. While their main purpose is to drive promotions and boost revenue, email communication also serves to deepen connections and inspire brand loyalty within your community of subscribers.

Here are several types of emails that can lead digital marketing campaigns designed to convert subscribers into repeat customers:

  • Welcome emails
  • Referral emails
  • Re-engagement emails
  • Promotional emails
  • Abandoned cart emails
  • Upsell or cross-sell emails.

The right email marketing platform gives you all the tools and resources needed to create these emails and execute digital campaigns that support them. Seamless integration with ecommerce platforms—like Shopify, WooCommerce, and BigCommerce—is also a must.

Campaign Monitor’s email marketing product for ecommerce features advanced segmentation, premade campaigns for automation, and more. Try CM Commerce today.