6 Types of Transactional Emails eCommerce Sites Must Know

Email is still one of the most commonly used and commonly accepted mediums by which eCommerce transactions are validated. When you purchase an airline ticket online or a new book on Amazon you often expect to receive an email in your inbox informing you that your order has been confirmed or your shipment is on its way.

For marketers, emails are a good thing. A study from Experian shows that email volume was up 11.6 percent from Q1 in 2013 compared to Q1 in 2012 and a large part of this increase is attributed to the adoption and use of smartphones that give us easy access to emails from anywhere.

When transactional emails are used by marketers they not only help to provide assurance that a consumer’s money is going where it was supposed to but they can also provide opportunities for repeat transactions. Let’s take a look at the six different types of transactional emails that eCommerce sites must know and should be using on a daily basis to retain more customers.

1. Order Confirmation

In many scenarios the order confirmation is the first email from brand to consumer. Not all consumers want to create profiles or accounts before ordering products; this means that consumers will just get on a site and checkout.

Once a customer makes a purchase the order confirmation email is an affirmation that their order is being processed, the order’s contents are accurate, the shipping address is accurate, etc. Most customers expect the order confirmation email to be sent almost immediately after they have placed an order. This email serves as sort of the digital receipt that a customer would come to expect from a brick and mortar store and can be used as a reference point for customer service inquires or additional order questions.

Related: How to Get Customers to Open Your Emails

2. Shipping Confirmation

The shipping confirmation email is similar to the order confirmation email in that assures a customer that their purchase is on its way. It also allows the customer to review their order once more and review the details regarding shipping.

Online consumers have come to expect shipping confirmation emails as assurance that everything regarding the shipping of their order is running as planned. Not having a shipping confirmation email creates doubt in the consumers mind and makes them wonder if the company they ordered from is as credible as they thought they were.

3. Account Confirmation

The account confirmation email is the first email a consumer will get once they have successfully started a new account on your eCommerce website. This reassures them that their interactions will be logged and that they can use their account on your website.

In addition to providing retailers confirmation that an email is in fact legitimate, the account confirmation email can also be used to incentive your consumer to start shopping. This is a good place for retailers to provide quick links to the site or encourage consumers to follow them on social media.

4. Opt-in Email

More of an upselling and branding technique than anything, the opt-in email provides your customers the opportunity to elect certain types of email subscriptions from you. These opt-in emails can include subscriptions to your newsletter, daily specials, tips, guides, etc. These are great sales tools to use to maintain a presence and to upsell your consumers after they make a sale or when they have expressed interest in your company.

5. Cart Abandonment

The cart abandonment email is a response to customers who make it to the checkout section on your website yet abandon the checkout before making a transaction. This provides retailers the opportunity to learn more about their consumers and persuade them to complete the transaction. By reaching out to these customers via email you can cater messages to them based on the products you know they are already interested in.

Offer discounts for those specific products, offer customer service help, or reach out to your customers and ask them why they did not complete the transaction to improve your level of service.

6. Order Follow-up

Order follow-up emails are an unexpected but welcome form of communication that shows consumers that you care about their experience. By thanking your consumers for their order and asking them to provide their opinion – in review form or directly to your customer service reps – you are providing them the opportunity to give you valuable feedback about your products.

This order follow-up email can also be used to drive customers back to the website and indirectly remind them to do business with you again.

Automating Your Transaction Emails

The best approach for streamlining transactional emails is to set them up ahead of time with automated email software so that the six transactional emails will be sent out automatically. This also ensures that your emails go out in a timely manner and reach consumers when they expect them. Looking for the ideal tools to automate your emails? Check out Magenticians’ Ecommerce Hub – The Ultimate Resource for Everything Ecommerce

What other transactional emails do you use or would you recommend? Please let us know in the comments.