This article will help you if you want to scale up your e-commerce business via email without relying on Facebook ads or organic strategies that take years to pay off.
Of course, social media posting is important but without building your email list you’re setting yourself up for a potential disaster down the road.
That’s right, especially with the new iOS14 update coming that Facebook is freaking out over, and the fact that Facebook changes the rules every few months and can destroy people’s livelihoods if they rely on it too much…
The old adage continues to ring true. Your email list is the only traffic source you own, so you would be foolish to neglect it and even more foolish to not have any list at all.
So, this post will give you my 3 best strategies for using your website growing your email list, without costing you a cent. Let’s dive in!
One of the first things you will do when you’re creating your business is create your website. 100% of founders have a website. What less than 10% of people have is actually a way to use that website to generate emails, and the 10% that do could be doing it much better.
Here’s what I mean, you do have a few assets available to you at all times, whether you are just at the very start of your journey, or you have thousands of subscribers. The things you have are, your website, your social media page, and the ability to make an offer.
So, these assets can be put to use in order to grow your email list, you want to almost guarantee that someone who goes to your website will give you their email. You do that by having an unbelievable offer on your site when someone arrives and to get it, they must give you their email.
How do you get people to go to your site? Give them an unbelievable offer to go and check out your products. Things can get really complicated when it comes to online marketing so let me boil it down like this, if you give people something that they want and tell them how to get it, a lot of people will take it. Simple, however not easy.
So when they land on your site how can we get the email?
Pop-ups have a pretty bad rep nowadays and yes it’s for good reason, Facebook and Google don’t really like them either. So do you just forget about email marketing and keep paying them more money to reach less people?
No. You just get smarter with your pop-ups. Popups can be quite annoying so you want to minimise the friction people encounter when they land on your page. Here are some ideas;
1. Set a delay of 10-15 seconds before your popup displays, to give people a chance to take a look before you jump in front of them with an email form.
2. Set the popup to display once someone has scrolled down 50% of your page
3. Create an exit intent popup that only displays as someone looks like they’re about to leave.
The second big part of a popup that a lot of people get wrong is… you guessed it, the offer.
People are hesitant to give their email to any person or any site that just asks. You must incentivise people to give you their email by offering something in return, otherwise people just don’t want to join your mailing list for the fun of it, usually.
Offer a discount, exclusive content, free shipping, upgraded products in their first order, whatever you can come up with to make your popup ‘sell’ them on giving you their email. This could also be a place to give a great resource (eBook, PDF, Mini Course) that they would be interested in, but this last part is key. The content must be something the customer would actually pay for but you’re giving it for free, and hyper relevant to them.
That’s why most people fail trying to give content away instead of a discount, to make your content worthy enough for someone to give you their email is probably way more work than just giving a discount and making up the difference elsewhere.
Pro tips: Give your popup a strong headline, clear call-to-action button and clear exchange of value for their email address and you will have a good head start.
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#2 Signup Survey Flow
I always tell people to just have a popup if they have nothing else, and they are great to get started if you don’t know what you’re doing, at least your email list is growing, and you can learn from there.
One even more clever way of collecting emails, with less friction for the customer and more effective for you, is to have a signup survey or form. This is where when a customer clicks ‘get started’ or ‘add to cart’ on your product page a small form appears that asks them a few questions and then asks their email before they are redirected to the checkout page.
The key here is to ask 2-3 questions before the customer’s email in order to build momentum and have them take a couple of micro-commitments before asking the email, otherwise you risk scaring them off.
This in my opinion is the optimal way to get emails from your site, but it does require some coding skills to set up, or else paying for tools such as Rocketforms (although I have never used these, but they look good). We use a custom coded solution on our site.
The key is that we don’t need to have any pop ups but we get over 200 email leads per day from this process along with our subscribers that sign up straight away, so its very effective once you implement it correctly.
#3 Abandoned Cart
This is critical. It’s shocking how many people don’t have this simple feature set up and its literally leaving a huge percentage of your sales on the table. Most people don’t have abandoned cart recovery set up for one of 2 reasons, they either don’t know they need it, or they can’t set it up correctly.
Almost all e-commerce platforms offer some sort of abandoned cart recovery. We use Subbly and they have a built-in solution, Shopify has apps, WooCommerce will have plugins, so there is usually a way of building it into almost all websites.
This is an extremely important place to be capturing your email addresses from. These are your hottest leads, they have clicked your ad, been to your website, got to the checkout and then dropped off before they purchased. They must be captured and need a very quick follow up if you want to send them back to complete their purchase before they change their mind.
Figure out what app or plugin you need to capture people’s email addresses when they reach your cart but don’t buy. This doesn’t need to even be fancy, grab their email when they click ‘add to cart’ and then pass it to your autoresponder to email them if they don’t purchase.
Obviously, you want to tailor your message based on whether someone is a warm lead (popup or survey responder) vs. a hot lead (abandoned cart) but that’s probably for another post.
I hope this article was helpful and gave you some ideas to grow your list from your site. If you have any questions about email marketing or e-commerce in general just let me know!