What happens after a customer makes a purchase?
A customer’s post-purchase experience is just as crucial to the success and sustainability of your business as the actions that led to the purchase. Post-Purchase communication with customers is essential to encourage repeat purchases, customer loyalty, and advocacy.
Engagement post-purchase is a contributing factor to overall customer satisfaction with your service and determines how relevant your organization remains to the customers. Post-purchase engagement is also an avenue for businesses to gain insight and feedback from customers and convert customers to advocates and brand ambassadors.
Andrew Bialecki of Klaviyo offers excellent insight into the importance of post-purchase emails and the various types and techniques available to businesses in his article 8 Essential Practices for a Winning Post-Purchase Email. He defines the two categories of Post-Purchase emails as:
Initial Post-Purchase Emails
These emails are sent to clients within hours of making a purchase. While shopping is fresh and the client is feeling good about their purchase, reinforce the value of your product/service. Maintain this momentum by sending post-purchase emails that make the client feel appreciated. Also, provide useful information about the product or service they ordered and support them going forward.
Initial post-purchase emails take various forms such as:
Send an email immediately customer payments or orders are received confirming receipt of the order. Find exciting ways to thank customers for purchasing your product or using your service, and they are more likely to do so again.
Canva sends a confirmation email immediately you click the submit button!
Order Tracking and Support
Emails informing customers of the shipment of their purchase and providing information on delivery terms or tracking options reassures customers and sets expectations. Managing customer expectations is crucial for customer satisfaction. If delivery takes 3 to 5 days, ensure the client is aware!
Online shopping platform Souq.com communicates frequently and sets clear timelines for order processing and shipment.
What to Expect
When a client makes a purchase or subscribes to a service, an email detailing the requirements, expectations, and steps for receiving or accessing the service will reinforce the value of your service to the customer. The difference between expectation and actual delivery is the measure of customer satisfaction with a product or service, so manage expectations by providing all relevant information prior to service delivery to increase customer satisfaction.
UpStart University, an online learning platform for modern farmers, uses various post-purchase emails to keep students and those that have indicated an interest in their services engaged.
Dedicated Post-Purchase Emails
Post-purchase emails focused on ensuring customer engagement and repeat business without seeming sales-focused are very important for companies. These email types can be incorporated into your overall customer relationship management strategy to gain customer engagement and repeat business. Some forms of dedicated post-purchase emails are:
Connect with Us
Emails informing your customers of your social media pages and asking customers to join your online platforms are an effective way of communicating to clients that you would like to keep them in the family. Send a dedicated Connect with Us email to new customers and incorporate social share into all your communication with customers.
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Use purchase behavior and knowledge of your client to upsell and cross-sell your products. Recommend products that work well with the client’s purchase, enhance the client’s purchase, or help customers achieve set objectives based on data you have collected.
Blogs and Newsletters are excellent customer engagement techniques. Leverage your newsletter to stimulate repeat purchases and reach more customers by providing relevant value-adding content that showcases your brand, product, or processes.
Add-ons to Post- Purchase Emails
Other forms of post-purchase emails that can be combined with Initial and Dedicated Post-Purchase Emails to gain repeat purchases and brand advocacy include:
Similar to “You May Also Like”, product suggestions inform customers of other products or services offered by your business, provide information on your products, and keeps your organization in front of customers for easy recall through engagement.
B2B organizations and sellers of consumables can take the sales process further to inventory management. Your understanding of your client’s business or use of your product will help you anticipate when the client may need more of your product or service. Emails prompting the client to re-subscribe or refill will improve your chances for repeat business.
Next Purchase Incentives
Offer customers discounts and coupons as appreciation for purchases. This strategy fulfills the dual purpose of making customers feel appreciated while ensuring repeat business from customers taking advantage of discounts/coupons.
Surveys, feedback forms, and requests for referrals are valid reasons to contact customers post-purchase. Feedback from customers provides insight into areas for service improvement. Hannah Stacey suggests incentivizing customers to get the best results.
Creating the Right Impression
In a blog post for Omeria, Hannah Stacey offers excellent insight and tips on creating the right impression with your post-purchase emails. Use these tips to develop effective post-purchase emails:
A lot of effort goes into marketing and sales drives. Make the same level of effort in your post-purchase engagements. Merely sending out automated emails fails to build on the post-purchase euphoria to create a lasting impression of your brand on the customer. Make the content of your post-purchase emails interesting, entertaining, and consistent with your brand image.
Let customers see your brand when they open your post-purchase emails. Customize templates provided by Mail Service providers with your brand colors and images. Save customized templates for reuse to ensure your post-purchase emails have consistent branding and feel.
Personalize Post-Purchase Emails
Post-purchase emails are not routine marketing emails or unsolicited marketing emails. Keep in mind that you have done business with the receiver and communicate familiarity and warmth in your email. The first step in personalizing post-purchase emails is to use the client’s name in the salutation.
Make Post-Purchase Emails Visual
Visually appealing emails are memorable and more likely to be opened. Avoid lengthy texts. Instead, use images and links to provide relevant information and direct customers to necessary additional information. Pay attention to the design and aesthetics of your post-purchase emails as much as the content to keep customers engaged and motivated to open your emails. LiveStrong is excellent at keeping content interesting and newsletters visual.
Maintaining existing customers and generating repeat business from such customers is the strategy smart companies should adopt for sustainability and profitability. By understanding the various forms of post-purchase emails and the effects they elicit, intelligent businesses can optimize their customer relationship management and sales process to generate new business from existing customers. Try a few of these post-purchase emails using customized templates from your Mail provider and start engaging customers for repeat business.