18 June 2014
That first sale is special. But when you pursue further sales with your existing customers, you drive more revenue growth and business success. To get your customers to come back and buy more, you want quality after sales service and communication.
We recommend that, at the end of purchase, your website prompts the customer to sign up for product updates, newsletters, and email updates. Do get permission to contact your customer, so you don’t risk alienating them. You have a better chance of delivering quality after sales service when your emails aren’t regarded as spam.
Once you have permission to email, what makes a good follow-up email? Some emails are best to send immediately, and others are tactically more effective to delay. Here are seven ideas for your emails after the conversion:
Delivery notifications. This is the type of after sales service that you want to email immediately. Customers appreciate knowing as soon as possible the details about their shipments. Include a tracking number, which shipping service you used, when the delivery is leaving, and when it’s estimated to arrive. And if your customer opted in, they may even want a text message with this same information.
Email a Question. A question seems at first like an odd thing to email your customer, but why not ask that client how their ordering process went? What was easy? What wasn’t? This communication not only enhances the customer experience and shows you care, but you also use it to constantly improve your after sales service.
Links. Two links are important for your follow-up emails. A link to your website. And a link to contact your business. Your website is the place to go for reorders or for more information, and readily apparent contact information shows you respect your customer. Searching around endlessly for an email really hurts the customer experience. Trust us. We’ve been on the customer side as well.
Instructions and Troubleshooting Info. Sometimes people throw away the installation manuals. Hey, nobody’s perfect! It’s a good thing you followed up with an email, regarding the instructions and troubleshooting info, right? Whether this is delivered via a .PDF or a link to your website, this is the type of after sales service that never hurts to share.
Ask for a Review. If you ask for a review, wait a while to send the email out. You want to give your customer enough time to actually receive, inspect, and use your product before asking for validation. But a few weeks after delivery, send an email to your customer linking to a review page for the product they ordered. This helps build your community as well as increase content for your own website.
Accessories and Upsales. One of the great things about eCommerce is that you’ve got the entire customer history at your fingertips. You know what they’ve ordered, and what they might be interested in. If your customer has agreed to receive additional offers, automate an email and send it off. Include an offer for related items, accessories, or upselling possibilities. After sales service also creates a potential for continued sales service.
Special Offers. Not all customers are created equal. Some are active and very loyal, while others are dormant and haven’t ordered in a couple years. As previously mentioned with upselling, you have this information at your disposal. Use your Online Marketing capabilities to reward loyal customers with discounts, coupons, and customer appreciation offers. Meanwhile, why not also reintroduce yourself to some old customers? Show off some of your new offerings and give them a reason to return, like free shipping.
Not all of these follow-up email ideas are appropriate for every customer. This is just a jumping off point towards furthering the goal of excellent customer experience and after sales service. The sale, the word of mouth, the marketing… it doesn’t end just because the first sale does. Your company has many fruitful relationships to develop, and Sale #1 is just the beginning.