How to Choose Email Software for Ecommerce

For 87% of B2B marketers and 77% of B2C marketers, email remains the primary content marketing channel. Indeed, it helps to expand the customer base and get to know your audience better.

Despite a wide variety of email services available today, there is no one that would suit every business. That is why choosing software should involve multiple factors to find the one which will cover specific business needs. Further, you’ll read about the parameters you should evaluate to choose the most relevant email marketing software.

Email marketing myths

1. No one reads marketing emails.

As practice shows, just the opposite is true. Email continues to be a part of everyday life across all ages and social groups. By the way, almost 68% of teenagers and 73% of adults said they prefer to receive emails from ecommerce representatives.

2. Marketing emails do not influence consumer behavior.

According to statistics, more than half of the users who regularly receive such emails note their influence on the purchase decision. The value of this indicator largely depends on the properly built data analytics: an email campaign must reach the target consumer.

3. The effectiveness of email marketing is disputable.

However, in fact, according to eMarketer research, the average email marketing ROI is 122%. This is four times more than any other digital marketing channel.

Why Use Email Marketing Software?

There are various email marketing solutions aimed at addressing the marketing needs of a business:

• Automation and improvement of mechanisms for working with the customer base;

• Creating and managing marketing campaigns;

• Automation of the process of sending mailing lists;

• Analysis and reporting of marketing campaigns.

Criteria to Choose an Email Software Provider

Given the variety of such solutions, it is important to understand how to make the right choice in favor of a particular product. Despite the fact that all email marketing services have one global goal — increasing business profits by informing the target audience through emails — how this goal is achieved can vary significantly from solution to solution.

1. Cost

Free trial in place

When choosing any service or product, it is very important to try it out to make sure it meets your needs and expectations, both in terms of the availability of the necessary functionality and the quality of its implementation. Therefore, having a free trial is a very nice addition that reduces the risk of a wrong decision.

Don’t get carried away by free plans

Unlike the trial period, which gives a complete picture of what is happening inside the application, free plans are limited both in functionality and their performance. This makes the selection process difficult and does not allow a balanced assessment.

Charging model: contacts vs. emails

Thirdly, given the specifics of the email marketing tool, most decisions are based on the main two models of charging: the number of contacts and the number of emails sent monthly. For a large business with a broad customer base and a high number of emails sent, the plans based on the number of contacts are more reasonable. If you are just starting your journey in business or your work does not involve a large number of clients, you can choose plans based on the number of emails to send.

2. Contact management

The success of marketing campaigns largely depends on the quality of contact management implementation. What should you pay attention to in the matter of managing contacts?

Adding new contacts

The more ways the manager is given, the more likely it is that all possible situations will be covered. When uploading a file and matching data, you should check if the data matching works well and if there is a possibility to make adjustments.

When you deal with a huge number of contacts, there is always a chance that some of these contacts will not be added due to the incorrect data format, lack of necessary information, the presence of duplicates as well as technical problems. Not every email marketing solution gives you the information about what data was lost and why, which can result in losing a significant part of the audience.

Audience segmentation

Proper segmentation and targeted emails can improve conversion by 355% and increase revenues by 781%, so you need to make sure that the chosen solution has the necessary functionality to create separate lists for different groups, use tags and present other opportunities to select contacts from the general list according to specific parameters.

Personal data protection

It is important to keep in mind that any data of your contacts shall be stored and used accordingly to the laws. Therefore, you should make sure that the solution you choose allows you to secure your audience and your company in terms of receiving, storing, processing and transferring personal data. Examples would be the presence of built-in functionality for “Remind people how they signed up to your list,” “Double Opt-In,” and “Enable GDPR fields.”

3. Campaign management

The central part of any email marketing tool is campaign management. Quality of campaign management directly affects the main email marketing KPIs.

Available campaign formats

Check the tool’s ability to support different campaign formats. This will allow you to reach your customers as widely as possible.

Campaign builder

At this stage, it is worth paying attention to the resources needed to create content: the availability of the proper number of templates and the variability. Check how easy it is to create your own templates. A poor set of tools at this stage will prevent you from building converting campaigns.

Scheduling and workflow automation

The availability of scheduling marketing campaigns makes it possible to determine in advance the exact schedule for their receipt by your customers and save time by removing manual sending.

Workflow automation means building the entire process of your interaction with the client in various situations. It may become a challenge to build a workflow with a complex interface and an insufficient number of components at your disposal. Make sure that you are comfortable using the tool and that it covers your user journey.

4. Email delivery rate

Unfortunately, such is the reality that our emails sometimes fail to be delivered. There is a high probability that it will appear in spam and clients will not know that you are trying to reach out to them. When choosing your solution, pay attention to this important parameter. Otherwise there is a chance that you may lose part of your audience and spend your budget in vain.

5. Analytics

The cherry on top is the functionality helping assess the results of your marketing campaigns. Analytics should reflect the effectiveness of the campaign in terms of the following parameters: average open rate, average click rate, average subscribe rate, average unsubscribe rate, audience growth and campaign performance. Some solutions even allow A/B testing, which is very important for making the right marketing decisions.

6. Integration capabilities

To make the most of email software, you should make sure it is accurately integrated with other 3rd parties like website, mobile app, CRM and others. Your aim should be to create a digital commerce system that works smoothly as a single mechanism. So, when choosing an email service investigate its integration possibilities.

Waleriya Bagnyuk-Yurkantovich is a Business Analyst and Consultant at SolveIt. The company focuses on mobile and web development for retail, ecommerce and some other industries. Within six years, SolveIt successfully launched 100 apps, rated 4.5 on average with a CSAT of 100%. Bagnyuk-Yurkantovich herself is dedicated to helping brands discover business goals and transform them into profitable technology products and tools, including business automation. Her expertise includes retail, ecommerce, transportation and logistics industries.

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