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Keep Your Readers Engaged With These Proven E-Commerce Newsletter Ideas

  • Email Marketing

Ninety-nine percent of shoppers check their email every day. Of those shoppers, more than 50 percent check it more than ten times a day. 

And here’s the kicker: email is still the preferred way for shoppers to receive updates from e-commerce brands. 

This makes it hands down the best way to communicate with your audience and let them know about deals, offers, and the general happenings of your business. 

But to keep them engaged and make them want to open your emails, you need to consistently come up with fresh newsletter ideas.

Here are some examples of e-commerce newsletter ideas that I personally love and that you can draw inspiration from.  

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Want More Email Marketing Inspiration?

Let’s face it: writing good marketing emails is TOUGH. To help, we’ve put together an email marketing swipe file, including 41 email marketing examples (organized by category). Plus, a few other goodies not featured below (*cough* killer Facebook Ad examples *cough*).

1. New Products 

Let’s start with one of the most popular e-commerce newsletter ideas—new products. Whenever someone opts into your newsletter, it usually means they’re interested in the products you’re selling.

So, if you drop new products that are relevant and interesting, you can bet that a good portion of readers will want to know about them.

Just take this newsletter from personalized children’s book brand Wonderbly, for example.

It showcases three new books they’ve recently added to their collection and uses a witty, playful headline “Turn a NEW page.”

They provide an image of each of the new books, along with a quick snippet of what it’s about, and an easy to follow CTA that takes readers straight to the product page

The design is simple and straightforward, and the information is presented in a way that’s easy to scan while incorporating a nice color scheme that jives perfectly with Wonderbly’s brand identity. 

This particular email had a 20 percent open rate across six markets and languages, with a top open rate of 30.1 percent with its Italian audience. 

So, whenever you unveil new products, an e-commerce newsletter is an excellent way to get the word out and keep readers engaged. 

2. Cart Abandonment Reminders

Shopping cart abandonment is a problem that plagues many e-commerce stores, with the average rate hovering right around 70 percent

That’s obviously not ideal. But fortunately, there’s good news. Just because a shopper doesn’t go through with their purchase and abandons their cart doesn’t mean they’re lost forever.

Sending a cart abandonment reminder that features a shopper’s saved items can increase the purchase rate by 10 percent. Better yet, sending multiple reminders increases that number even more.

In fact, “research shows that three cart abandonment emails brought in 69 percent more revenue than a single email.”So why not make this part of your e-commerce newsletter?

That’s what clothing brand Alex Mill does with this email. At the very top, they let the reader know that they’ve saved their picks, and Alex Mill will give them 15 percent off if they check out now.

When the reader scrolls down, they see images of the items they recently added to their cart and can easily click-through to refresh their memory and check the products out in further detail. 

The simplicity and beautiful design combined with an enticing discount of 15 percent make this an email that should pique the interest of many readers, compelling them to take action. 

So if your cart abandonment rate is higher than what you’d like it to be, or if you simply want to boost your conversion rate, this is a great idea to borrow from.

3. Celebration Emails

In the US alone, there are ten federally recognized holidays each year.  And there are tons of more unofficial ones, meaning there’s always something to celebrate, no matter what time of the year it is. 

That’s why I’m such a huge fan of celebration emails, which target holidays, seasons, and special moments that shape your readers’ lives. 

Take this newsletter from modern basics brand Everlane that celebrates summer.

This humorous email with the subject line, “Your Butt Has Summer Plans,” was sent during the peak of the Covid-19 crisis when many people were quarantined and stuck at home.

It provided some much needed comic relief and seamlessly worked Everlane’s collection of shorts into the picture.

Even though many readers weren’t able to embark on any amazing adventures because of the pandemic, this newsletter put them in a fun, summer state of mind, while promoting Everlane’s products.

It’s all about capitalizing on what people are celebrating at the moment and basing your newsletter around that. And like I said earlier, there are a ridiculous number of unofficial holidays that could potentially work. 

Everything from National Bubble Bath Day on January 8 to National Zipper Day on April 29.

Check out the Holiday Calendar list for the full rundown. 

4. Top Product Picks

Product recommendations based on a shopper’s prior behavior and purchases are another gold mine. In fact, over a third (35 percent) of Amazon’s overall sales come from product recommendations. 

So it only makes sense that this is something you’d want to incorporate into your e-commerce newsletter. And it’s dead simple. Send readers a list of top product picks that are fully personalized according to what they’re interested in a few times a month.

Here’s a great example from fine home furnishings brand Perigold.

All they did was grab customer data and create an easy to navigate list of items they would likely be interested in. This saves the reader a ton of time from having to manually search Perigold’s site for products, and they can conveniently click on whatever catches their eye. 

Just like that, the reader is taken to a product page, like this one featuring the “Beret Storage Jar,” where they can get full details and make a purchase. 

Not only is this a nice way to keep readers engaged with your e-commerce newsletter, showcasing top product picks can have a massive impact on your click-through-rate, increasing it by as much as 330 percent.

Many email providers offer personalized product recommendation tools, so check with yours to see what’s available. 

5. Customer Reviews

Ninety-three percent of consumers say online reviews impact their purchasing decisions.”

Furthermore, research has found a positive correlation between reviews and revenue, with the Harvard Business Review specifically stating, “for every one-star increase a brand gets on Yelp that business sees a 5-9 percent increase in revenue.”

Many e-commerce brands already use reviews in some capacity, but not all that many are featuring them in their newsletter. But this is yet another idea you can add to your arsenal to connect with readers and build a deeper level of trust. 

Just check out this email from Onsen, an e-commerce brand that sells lightweight, absorbent, and fast-drying bath towels.

Providing readers with reviews like this is the crux of this newsletter, where the content is a review from one of their satisfied customers. 

Scroll down a little further, and the reader can quickly access over 1,500 more reviews to get a comprehensive overview of the quality level of Onsen’s products.

Here’s the page readers are taken to.

Another thing worth noting is that the more reviews you have, the better. According to BrightLocal, the average shopper requires a brand to have 40 reviews before they believe the rating.

So keep this in mind, and try to have as many reviews as possible for maximum impact. 

6. Educational Content

Although product promotion is an integral part of an email newsletter, you should avoid taking a “sell, sell, sell” approach, where you’re constantly trying to push products and nothing else.

This can lead to buyer fatigue, which inevitably results in a churn rate that’s higher than it should be. 

But I find that passing out knowledge through educational content is an effective way to create a better balance and keep readers hooked. Not only does this provide them with practical information they can use, but it also helps build your credibility as a trusted resource for a win-win. 

So, what exactly do I mean by educational content?

This newsletter from custom photo book and gift company Artifact Uprising is an excellent example. 

In it, they give readers seven tips to get started with building their first custom photo book. They offer tips and tricks with their crowd favorite DIY guides.

They also offer a breakdown of their ten favorite book covers at the moment, along with advice for scanning old photos. 

There’s a ton of helpful information in this newsletter and something many of their subscribers will appreciate. In turn, Artifact Uprising is able to:

  • Boost engagement
  • Send a steady stream of qualified leads to their website
  • Establish thought leadership

And once readers see the value this brand provides, they’re way more likely to open future emails they receive. 

That’s why educational content is one of the best e-commerce newsletter ideas and one that can quickly accelerate the growth of your subscriber list. 

7. Inspiration

There’s also inspiration, where you share content that gives readers ideas and shows them examples of your products in action.

An e-commerce brand that has mastered this technique is home decor and luxury furniture company One Kings Lane. The brand curate posts from their style blog that gives readers inspiration on design and making their home more beautiful. 

Here’s one particular email that I love, which includes ideas for improving the design of a home swimming pool, interior design, art collecting, and more.

Whenever someone clicks on a link, they’re taken to the blog post, where they can get a bunch of ideas for how to take their home to the next level. Here’s the post for “8 Exquisite Pools That Are Simply Perfection.”

In it, One Kings Lane shares several different swimming pools and features stunning photos, along with “the vibe,” “the furnishings,” and “style tip to steal.”

The post looks fantastic and is jam-packed with super helpful information for readers to use and apply. And at the bottom, they include a link to the outdoor shopping section of the One Kings Lane site, where readers can find plenty of quality products to decorate their pool.

I know that I love it when brands give me a little direction to get my creative juices flowing. And I’m sure many other people feel the same.

Taking this approach from One Kings Lane is a perfect way to provide inspiration to your readers, while at the same time subtly promoting your products. 

If you’re curating content from your blog as this brand did, you should be able to get a surge in your blog readership as well, which is an added plus. 

8. Video

I probably don’t need to tell you that video is a big deal right now. In 2018, 85 percent of US internet users watched online video.

And the demand is growing, with 54 percent of consumers wanting to see more video content from brands. 

So the last of my e-commerce newsletter ideas is video, which is pretty self-explanatory. Just record video content that offers insights to your subscribers and provides them with value.

Twyla, a brand that sells limited-edition art prints online, really nails this technique in their newsletter. For instance, in this email about buying art, they have a video called “Methods for Acquiring World Class Art.”

It’s super informative and gives newbies a nice overview of what goes into art collection and tips for how to get started. Putting it into a video format like this makes everything easily digestible and capitalizes on one of the hottest trends in marketing. 

For guidance on how to get started with video, I suggest reading this guide from HubSpot

Free Downloadable Bonus

Want More Email Marketing Inspiration?

Let’s face it: writing good marketing emails is TOUGH. To help, we’ve put together an email marketing swipe file, including 41 email marketing examples (organized by category). Plus, a few other goodies not featured below (*cough* killer Facebook Ad examples *cough*).

Conclusion

Despite the plethora of different options for communication that are now available, email is still preferred by most consumers. And this isn’t likely to change any time soon.

Even with new channels constantly popping up, email remains the most effective way to stay in touch with your audience. 

But to keep them interested and engaged with your brand, you need to keep your newsletter fresh and consistently send them compelling content. The e-commerce newsletter ideas I mentioned here show just how many possibilities they are.

Finding a winning formula is just a matter of doing some experimentation to find what works best for your brand. Then, rinse and repeat. 

Which of these e-commerce newsletter ideas was your favorite, and why?

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