5 Automated Email Workflows for Any E-Commerce Business

Reading Time: 4 minutes
David McHugh
By David McHugh

December 19, 2023

Most e-commerce shoppers are self-driven; they know what they want and take the initiative to find a brand that provides it. But there are always opportunities to enrich customer engagement and improve the shopping experience for your prospects. E-commerce email automation is a great tool to achieve this goal.

With automated email workflows, you can put your email marketing processes on autopilot, freeing up your bandwidth for other tasks. These workflows can help you keep in touch with customers when they’re most receptive, and rebuild engagement if they’ve detached. Read on to discover five automated email workflows every e-commerce business should have. 

1. Welcome Email Series

When a customer first interacts with your brand, be sure to connect with them via email. It’s a good idea to implement an automated welcome series introducing customers to your brand, thanking them for joining your email list and letting them know about future updates. 

While a simple welcome email may seem insignificant, it can have some outstanding results. On average, welcome emails have 4x the open rates as other types of emails, along with a 29.6% click-through rate (Get Response).

Welcome series workflows can be broken up into several emails delivered over the course of a few days, with each one re-engaging the customer as a new member of your community and suggesting more resources for them to explore.  

2. Abandoned Cart Reminders

Abandoned cart reminder emails are one of the best ways to save sales when shoppers get distracted. It’s important to remember that just because a customer doesn’t complete the checkout process doesn’t necessarily mean they’ve given up on your brand. They simply may have clicked off the page, changed tabs, or wanted to compare several options before making a purchase. Sometimes, all customers need is a quick reminder to finish checking out.  

Be friendly — not pushy — when asking customers if they’d like to return to the items in their cart. Provide a CTA and link back to the checkout process so customers can easily continue right where they left off. 

Timing your abandoned cart emails correctly is also very important. The first automated reminder should be sent about one hour after cart abandonment, as this has been shown to have the highest conversion rates. Sending a reminder too early might cause you to unnecessarily contact customers who were planning to return to their cart anyway. Sending it too late may mean you reach them after they’ve already bought from a competitor. 

Finally, most carts are abandoned on mobile devices, so be sure to optimize your reminder emails — and all of your marketing emails — for mobile viewing. 

3. Post-Purchase Confirmation and Order Updates

When a customer makes a purchase, it’s a good idea to send an automated order confirmation series, starting with a receipt and a big thank you. 

From there, maintain engagement and notify the customer with regular order updates. Let them know you’re working on the order, notify them when their items have shipped, and provide a tracking number with an estimated delivery date. Most e-commerce brands do this, so customers will be expecting it when they make a purchase. 

4. Re-Engagement Campaigns

If customers previously interacting with your brand have dropped off the map for a while, try sending a re-engagement campaign. These emails can be friendly reminders of deals, new products, or updates on wishlist/cart items that could reignite a customer's interest. Re-engagement emails should provide easy links to dive back into the shopping experience. 

Remember to personalize these emails so customers know they’re valued individually and not just another email address on your list. You can even offer exclusive perks or discounts so shoppers feel encouraged to reconsider. Just be careful not to come off as pushy, rude, or desperate — this tends to push customers even further away.  

5. Customer Feedback Surveys

Customer feedback is extremely valuable to continue optimizing your marketing and CX strategies. To gather this info, it’s well worth it to send automated emails encouraging customers to fill out a survey. You can incentivize this action by offering deals and discounts on various items. 

Connect with Your Customers Through E-Commerce Email Automation

Email marketing is a powerful way to engage with your customers, and using automated workflows makes it far easier to stay consistent with your communications. Simply set up the automation and let it do its thing (while continuing to monitor, optimize, and collect data as you go). 

At WEBITMD, our marketing experts can help your e-commerce brand with everything from email workflows to paid media campaigns — and everything in between! Contact us today to learn how to empower your brand with email automation.

Marketing Automation Guide