Catalog and Direct Selling: Evaluate Your E-mail
A final “must” metric for e-mail evaluation is the opt-out or unsubscribe rate. A telltale sign of over-contacting customers with e-mail is a ballooning unsubscribe rate. As customers are bombarded with frequent e-mails and ever-increasing amounts of unsolicited e-mail, it’s critical to make sure messages are timely and relevant.
Also important: Give the customer the ability to opt out of certain types of messages. For example, she may not want to receive the newsletter, but may still want to get special promotions. Giving customers the ability to manage the way you communicate with them is imperative to maintain a sizeable file. As a rule, if your unsubscribe rates reach 1 percent, you’re in trouble.
In addition to any analysis uniquely tailored to your business, there are a couple of other actions you might consider evaluating during your post-analysis program.
If your customers are responsive to your e-mails and proceed to place items in their shopping carts but
abandon them along the way, you probably have a customer-service problem on the Web site. This is important to note because your offer can be perfectly crafted, creative, well-executed and perfectly timed, and still fail because the site wasn’t suited to facilitate a good customer experience.
If that isn’t the case, and your customers have a tendency to fill and abandon carts, consider putting together a follow-up e-mail campaign that goes to the customer stating,”Hi. We see you’ve selected some items, but didn’t buy. So you know, we’re keeping those available for you. Just click here, and we’ll take you right back to your cart.” It’s important these messages be “softer” with more of a customer-service slant and less of a selling angle.
An analysis of the navigation paths of customers who come to your site via e-mail campaigns can be fascinating. Do e-mail customers come in on a promotion and jump straight to the sale section of your site? Do they come in on what’s new and immediately search out more new products? How does what they click on affect the way they buy?