The customer experience is an often-overlooked component among small businesses that are looking to scale. It tends to take a backseat to activities that are tied more obviously to revenue, like gaining more website traffic and increasing conversions. To illustrate how important the customer experience is in driving lifetime value, though, consider these two scenarios.
Scenario A: You see a product you like in an online store but don’t purchase it right away. That night, you stay up late spending hours trying to track it down again and finally place an order. After a week, you haven’t heard anything about it, so you sit on hold with customer service during your lunch break, looking for an update. Finally, a few days later, your order arrives.
Scenario B: You see a product you like in an online store and a few hours later, receive an email that it’s running low on stock and now is a good time to buy it. Thankful, you click through and complete your purchase. An order confirmation immediately shows up in your inbox sharing next steps, followed two days later by a shipping notification with tracking information. The order arrives, accompanied by a text message to letting you know.
In these two scenarios, the basic outcome is the same: you receive your order. But one of them is the clear winner when it comes to making you want to shop at this store again in the future. What’s the difference between them? The customer experience.
You can create positive experiences that turn casual shoppers into lifelong fans by mapping the customer journey and creating automated campaigns that engage them at every step of the buying process and beyond.
5 Ideas to Automate Campaigns for a Standout Brand Experience
In many cases, a welcome series will be a potential shopper’s first personalized interaction in the customer experience. Make it count!
Sent after a subscriber opts into your email list, this multi-part series should help the customer get a feel for what your brand is all about and ideally, offer them something of value. Some ideas include a discount to use on their first purchase or a batch of points to get them started in your loyalty program.
How you structure your automated welcome series is entirely up to you, but here’s how a typical welcome campaign might look:
- Email 1: Welcome subscriber and offer discount
- Email 2: Share brand’s backstory and highlight bestselling products
- Email 3: Remind of discount
The abandoned cart automation is perhaps the biggest opportunity of any we’ll mention to bring in more revenue at no additional cost. You’ve already put in the work to attract the shopper to your website, so don’t let them get away so easily.
An automated abandoned cart email is sent to the shopper within a few hours after they click away from your site without buying. Some brands prefer a two-part sequence: the first email with a reminder of the product, the second email (sent if the first one does not result in a conversion) with a discount code offer to sweeten the deal.
Back In Stock
When products go out of stock, the lost sales are not only detrimental to your bottom line, but frustrating for customers who had every intention of buying from you. Bring them back to complete their purchase and turn a potentially negative brand experience into a positive one with a back in stock automation.
You can give customers the opportunity to opt into back in stock notifications manually by inputting their email address, or send alerts automatically to contacts who are already in your CRM after they view an out-of-stock item.
Research has demonstrated that focusing on retaining existing customers and increasing their lifetime value is far more effective for producing steady, predictable income than trying to win new customers. Thus, lifetime value is one of the top metrics that growth-minded brands should pay attention to.
Lifetime value is actually very simple: it’s the amount in dollars that a customer is worth to you over the life of their relationship with your brand. Driving this metric upward, though, is far less straightforward. It requires carefully mapping the customer journey and building meaningful customer experiences throughout it to cement the brand relationship.
Enter the winback automation. This automation focuses on bringing back existing customers whose interactions with your brand have lapsed. This can happen for any number of reasons, from life changes on their end to lack of engaging content on yours.
Whatever the case, a winback campaign is your chance to show the customer that they still matter to you and you’d like to keep them around. For this reason, we recommend using a discount code or some other offer as a show of good faith as you entice them to return to your website.
There are many ways to harness your site’s signup forms to strengthen your automations; using them to collect customers’ birthdays and anniversaries is one such strategy.
Everyone loves to feel recognized on their special day. Reaching out with an automation triggered by a subscriber’s birthday or anniversary creates one more positive touchpoint that feeds the customer experience. Plus, it costs you next to nothing to implement and may even yield additional sales you wouldn’t have won without making this touchpoint.