When and How to Use Email Marketing as a Small Business Owner
According to statistics parsed by Constant Contact, 3 billion people around the world will be using email by 2020. And by 2019, around 246 billion emails will be sent every single day. So nearly half the world’s population currently relies on email for communication and sends multiple emails every single day. And more and more people will begin relying on email channels and sending emails every year.
For your small business, the importance of implementing an email marketing strategy in tandem with your other marketing services and strategies simply can’t be overstated. Not only is it more cost-effective, but it also gets results. Consider the following facts, figures, and statistics:
- 80% of business professionals state that email marketing drives customer acquisition and retention.
- For every $1 you spend on email marketing, you can expect an average return of $38.
- Email yields higher conversion rates than those for social media and search tactics combined.
- People are two times more likely to sign up for your emails than they are to interact with you on Facebook.
- 61% of consumers enjoy receiving promotional emails weekly, while 38% would like to receive emails even more frequently.
(Source: Constant Contact)
But before you start dabbling in email marketing for your small business, it’s important to fully understand when you should be using it, as well as how you should be using it, if you want it to be consistently effective and yield high returns. Keep reading to learn more.
When to Use Email Marketing
It’s extremely important to understand when and why you should be sending marketing emails if you want your email campaigns to be effective and yield real results. Here is when and why you should be sending marketing emails:
To Build Your Mobile Audience
The average person checks his or her mobile phone 80 times a day. And three out of five people use their mobile devices to check and respond to emails, with 44% of people checking their inboxes up to three times per day. If you want to build and connect with a mobile audience, send mobile-optimized marketing emails.
To Establish Your Credibility
Consumers and other businesses do business and buy from entities they know, like, and trust. And when you send out regular emails with newsletters and other content containing news about your business and industry, people get to know you and your expertise. They begin to trust you over time, which forms your credibility and trustworthiness.
To Welcome Your New Customers or Subscribers
Once someone makes a purchase, signs up for something on your website, or subscribes to your emails, send them a welcome email. Not only does this enhance your credibility, but people are more likely to open welcome emails. According to GetResponse, welcome emails have a 91.43% open rate, while (according to MailChimp) the average open rate for all industry emails is general only 20.81%.
To Conduct Transactional Exchanges
Transactional emails, where the recipient donates or spends money, have eight times more opens and clicks than other emails and generate up to six times more revenue.
To Remind Customers of Abandoned Carts
To Verify Purchases and Share Shipping Information
Customers always want receipts for their online orders to make sure they were charged the correct amount, know when their orders have been successfully processed, and to receive any relevant shipping information about their packages so that they can track them and know when they’re receiving their items.
To Share Promotional Content and Special Offers
Your email subscribers want to receive information about deals, discounts, and special offers. As mentioned above, 61% of consumers enjoy receiving promotional emails weekly, while 38% would like to receive emails even more frequently.
To Share Helpful or Interesting Content
While customers and prospects like receiving special offers and discounts, they don’t always want to feel like you’re trying to sell them something. Make sure you’re also sending helpful or interesting content in your emails. For instance, you can balance the number of promotional emails you send with the number of newsletters and helpful blog posts you share with them via email.
Tips and Best Practices for Using Email Marketing
Here are some things you’ll want to make sure you do when you’re using email marketing as a small business owner.
Prioritize Email Marketing Over Social Media Marketing
Don’t forget, emails yield higher conversion rates than social media and search tactics when conversion rates for social media and search are combined.
Optimize Emails for Mobile Devices
Since nearly every single person who’s on mobile uses a mobile device to check their emails, it’s imperative that your emails are easy to view and engage with on a mobile device. If they’re not, they will not get the returns you’re hoping for and won’t be very effective.
Use Email Automation
Use automated email marketing for welcome emails, information for orders and shipping, sharing content and newsletters, etc. Why? Automated emails generate 320% more revenue than non-automated emails.
Personalize Each Email
Do things like include recipients’ names in emails and segment your email lists so that each email you send is highly relevant to each of its recipients and what they care about. Ninety-four percent of customers and marketing professionals have said that email personalization is “extremely important” for meeting email marketing objectives.
Make Some of Your Emails Interactive
Include video content, quizzes, and other interactive elements in some of your emails. According to reports parsed by MarTech, adding videos to your email content can boost click rates up to 300%.
Share Links to Helpful Content and Information
Include links to your blog posts, landing pages, website pages, industry white papers, recently acquired customer reviews, etc. in your emails. For instance, recent customer reviews or information about “other items you might like” in your promotional emails will likely land more conversions from those emails.
Always Include a CTA
Above all else, always include a CTA (call-to-action) in your marketing emails. Whether it’s a “Buy Now” button for a promotional offer or a “Read Now” link for blog posts published on your website, every single email should include some sort of CTA. Otherwise, its effectiveness is untraceable and cannot be analyzed later; also, customers won’t end up doing anything after they receive your email.
Things to Avoid When Using Email Marketing
As a small business owner, if you want your email marketing initiatives to be effective, avoid doing the following above all else.
- Neglect to get permission from your recipients—don’t forget to have contacts from your email list sign up or opt-in to receive your emails. Otherwise, they’ll just delete them or mark them as spam.
- Include subject lines that are overhyped or misleading, dense text that is hard to wade through, images and media that’s hard to view or download, and broken links or unusable offer codes.
- Focus only on your products and your business and not your email recipients and what they care about.
- Make it too difficult to complete a call-to-action, such as signing up for a service or purchasing an item on sale, by including too many buttons or un-loadable web pages to parse through.
- Forget to include a link to your business website and social media accounts, as well as relevant contact information for customer service.
- Fail to track and analyze your emails and their conversion rates so that you can continue to perfect your overall email marketing strategy.
Be sure to follow the tips and information above so that you can send marketing emails that will remain effective and continue to generate more revenue for your small business.