10 Post-Purchase Email Ideas to Extend the Customer Journey

Ecommerce Best Practices | 5 mins

You’ve likely put a lot of time and effort into thinking about how to get your customers to finally hit that purchase button. But your work doesn’t end there.

How you continue to engage with customers beyond that initial conversion can play a huge role in setting your business up for sustained success down the road.

So how do you keep the repeat purchases coming in?

One of the most effective ways to extend the customer buying journey is through post-purchase emails. Email is a fantastic way to upsell, cross-sell, increase repeat purchases, build brand loyalty, and promote community. You’re already top-of-mind for the customer when they make their first purchase, so it’s the perfect opportunity to build upon that momentum.

We’ve put together 10 ideas to help you build your post-purchase email nurture automations.

1. Spice up your confirmation email

The confirmation email doesn’t have to be bland and transactional. Feel free to add content and CTAs and keep your customers engaged and interacting with your brand. Purchase confirmations have the highest open and click-through rate of any automated email, so make sure they’re well designed, informative, and inspire shoppers to continue engaging and purchasing.

2. Include an incentive

Now that the customer is familiar with your product lineup, you need to foster loyalty and set the stage for the next conversion. Sending a purchase incentive via email is a great way to follow up on a recent purchase.

Not only is an incentive a gesture of appreciation; it might just give your customer that extra push to add on to their next order. With just one email, you can earn yourself a new repeat customer.

3. Offer personalized product recommendations

Do you have another item that would go well with the product that your customer just purchased? Maybe you also sell a shoe-care product that would be perfect for the customer who just bought a pair of leather boots.

Consider following up with a personalized product recommendation. This is a great opportunity to introduce new products to customers based on their purchasing habits and interests. Rather than just emailing out newsletters with untargeted products, communicate to customers why you’re recommending these particular products and how they will help the customer.

If you’re automating this type of post-purchase email, make sure that your product suggestions make sense. The person who just bought a coffee grinder or curling iron probably doesn’t need another one anytime soon.

4. Highlight loyalty programs

The customer may not be ready to make another purchase today or even a month from now. However, you want them to remember you whenever they’re looking to make that next purchase. If you have a customer loyalty program, make sure to tell your customers so they are incentivized to return to your brand.

Make sure to properly segment out your first-time and repeat shoppers. New shoppers benefit from content that introduces the program, while returning customers may only need a simple reminder.

5. Send a low-stock reminder

The best time to engage with a customer is when they might need to make another purchase and restock their supply. With a repeat customer, you can make an educated guess of when they get to this stage by understanding the lifespan or consumption period of your products.

For example, if you know your average customer goes through a shampoo product in about a month, send a follow-up email three weeks after delivery. The email serves as a helpful reminder that they might be running low, and that it’s time to buy again.

This strategy is particularly valuable for consumables or products that have limited lifespans like running shoes or water filters.

6. Share more about your product and brand

For customers, the period of time between purchase and delivery can sometimes feel like an eternity. As your shoppers wait for their purchase to arrive, it’s the perfect window to further educate them about your product, brand, and community.

Consider including information such as:

  • Delivery and tracking information
  • Instructions for product use
  • Community groups or social channels they can join and follow

7. Create segmentation based on behavior

The pre-purchase behavior of customers can tell you a lot about what they value after they’ve made their purchase. Use relevant factors like checkout amounts, whether they’ve abandoned their carts, or which pages they’ve visited, to deliver more relevant and tailored content.

Someone who has viewed all your instructional videos may value more educational based content, whereas a customer who always uses promo codes may find more value in a promo code.

8. Ask for feedback

Emails can play an important role in your customer testimonial strategy. Reviews and testimonials build trust and can help boost conversions. You can ask for feedback on anything, from a specific product or even your brand. Not only will this keep your current customers engaged, it’s also a great way to build a new customer base.

If you happen to receive any negative feedback, this also gives you an opportunity to make things right with the customer and provide an improved experience.

9. Incentivize referrals

A customer who is happy with your brand and product can be your best advocate. Consider offering a referral incentive after a recent purchase. This is especially relevant if an upsell doesn’t feel like the right fit for your customers based on your product offerings.

Your referral incentive can range from a promo code to free products. It doesn’t have to be extravagant. It just needs to encourage the customer to spread the word.

10. Send a personalized thank you

Sometimes a simple thank you can go a long way in building a strong relationship with your customer. Depending on your brand and product, the customer’s post-purchase journey may benefit from a sincere thank you.

While it might seem simple, there are many great ways to help your thank you email stand out. A few suggestions of what you can do to personalize a thank you email include:

  • Referencing the recently purchased product
  • Sending the email on behalf of the founder or CEO
  • Offering support if the customer has any questions or concerns

In summary

Emails can be an easy way to extend your customer journey, but don’t get too excited and send every type of post-purchase email. Choose what makes most sense for your business and the type of experience you want your customers to have. Too many emails can damage your relationship with your customers, so be selective.

When choosing which emails to include in your customer post-purchase journey, make sure you understand their needs and behaviors. Make sure each touchpoint brings value to the customer, rather than just serving you. By applying some of the ideas outlined in this article, you’ll set yourself up for success in crafting and executing a thoughtful post-purchase email strategy that will continually convert.