It’s 2018 and two things are true today:
- It’s easier than ever to start an Ecommerce business.
- It’s also much harder to get attention and grow your Ecommerce business.
Accessibility to knowledge and tools has made this easier, but has also created increased competition in all markets.
Let’s consider how paid advertising has changed recently: Most Ecommerce businesses rely on Google Adwords along with Facebook and Instagram ads to find more and new customers.
But just last year, the average cost-per-click for Facebook Ads more than doubled.
And I’d bet that this is a trend that will continue in 2018.
The reality and result of this is then simple: It’s becoming harder to get attention and attract new customers. You can throw money at the problem, but spending $100 in ads to get a $50 sale can never be a long-term solution.
If your business currently relies primarily on finding new customers that can bring in new revenue, your growth will struggle. (Not even to mention that the increased costs per click and costs per action will make those new customers less profitable too.)
In 2018 it is more important than ever to make sure that an ever-growing percentage of your revenue and profit growth is a result of you making your customers happy AND getting those existing customers to spend more money with you more of the time.
Trying to grow your business when you’re dependent on paid ads is the equivalent of hoping you’ll find your spouse when you’re only going on first dates with people you found on Tinder.
Instead you need to build an emotional relationship with your customers. Customers will spend more as their trust in the relationship grows. Over time, loyal customers spend 67% more than new ones.
And one of the best ways to grow that trust is with a loyalty and rewards program, which is why we’re so excited to announce our new integration with Smile.io today.
Loyalty and Emails: Making more customers more loyal
The value of having a loyalty and rewards program should not be news. We can pull out loads of statistics and case studies to quantify how valuable this is.
Ecommerce businesses that have used Smile.io have experienced some fantastic results, ranging from a 58% increase in repeat customer rate and a 48% increase in Customer Lifetime Value. They also found that loyalty members spend 55% more than non-members.
That is an incredibly strong foundation already.
But rather than just tell you about how valuable this is, we wanted to show you how to use email to improve your Smile.io-powered loyalty and rewards program.
The challenge with a loyalty program is that it is a “catch-all” solution. It’s available, accessible and probably attracts most of your best customers. But it likely misses many opportunities too.
Sending your customers a personalised email is a great way of meeting them at the right place, at the right time along every step of their journey (from first purchase to multiple repeat purchases).
According to this study, 56% of customers would respond to a personalised incentive, yet only 40% of customers have ever received a personalised incentive.
Campaigns that will make your customers smile (more)
To help you send smarter, personalised emails that find your customers in the perfect moment to take action, we have built our integration with Smile.io to leverage three sets of features:
- Including Smile.io data (like a points balance or membership tier) within your emails.
- Expanding your customer profiles with Smile.io data, which gives you advanced segmentation options (for example, sending a newsletter to only VIP Tier members).
- Solicit product reviews as an incentive to earn points in Smile.io.
Similarly to our two recent feature releases (here and here), CM Commerce gives you a unique advantage because we help you with email marketing and product reviews. Similar solutions for Ecommerce businesses only do either email marketing or product reviews. CM Commerce is an all-in-one email marketing solution though, which has already helped us build a one-of-a-kind Smile.io integration.
So this is all marketing-speak, but let’s dig into the actual campaigns that you can activate if you use Smile.io and CM Commerce alongside each other. Here’s a short list of some of our most successful recommendations that we’ve been testing with businesses during our beta in recent weeks:
- Improve Rewards Membership by sending a follow-up email sequence to non-members. Or send a once-off newsletter in bulk to promote your Rewards Program to those non-members.
- Increase the engagement of your Rewards Members (to get them to use their points and rewards) by including their points balance and tier details in post-purchase email sequences or promotional newsletters.
- Boost your abandoned cart recovery rate by reminding Rewards Members that they can earn more points or redeem their existing points to complete their latest purchase.
- Persuade your best customers to spend even more with them by giving them an exclusive offer. To do this, send a follow-up email sequence or newsletters only to Rewards Members with a certain points balance or that is on a specific membership / VIP tier.
- Extend your word-of-mouth by reminding your best customers to use their referral link to refer their friends to you and earn themselves some points.
- Get more product reviews by allowing your Rewards Members to earn points for adding reviews and ratings for the products they have purchased.
These suggestions are only the start and to help you kickstart this additional value immediately, we’ve crafted a more elaborate tutorial to show how easily you can implement these campaigns.
In the coming weeks, we’ll also be building various case studies with businesses that are successfully using this integration and we’re looking forward to sharing some new ideas and success metrics with you. (Judging by the initial responses we’ve seen on beta campaigns, we’re pretty optimistic.)
What is not to smile about this integration then? Are you currently using a rewards or loyalty program in your business? If not, how can we help you get this started?