June 15, 2020

The last thing consumers want in their inbox is more spam. Sending the wrong email will almost always guarantee your business a permanent place in the spam folder or even the dreaded “unsubscribe.” Sending the right email, on the other hand, can result in more site traffic and more sales. While it’s important to create a good email, it’s also important to meet customer expectations. Here’s a complete list of essential emails that e-commerce businesses send along with a few best practices.

9 Different Emails E-commerce Businesses Send

Welcome Email

Consumers have come to expect welcome emails as soon as they subscribe to a new list or make a first-time purchase. Because your welcome email will typically be the first point of contact between you and a new or potential customer, crafting the right message is critical.

Your first welcome message will set the tone and expectation for your subsequent emails which directly influences the likelihood of a recipient opening your emails (or not). Your welcome email is primarily transactional and should be friendly in tone.


Order Confirmation

Studies show that order confirmation emails have the highest open and click-through rate. It’s a perfect opportunity to remind your customers about their purchases and stay on top of their minds.

The order confirmation email is a blank slate for additional promos, but it’s first and foremost a way to set expectations with your customers. Let them know what happens after this and when they can expect to receive their order. Most customers expect to receive an order confirmation email which is why GearLaunch includes this service in your store.


Abandoned Cart Reminder

Have you ever left the site of an online store without purchasing the items you’d placed into your shopping cart? It happens often. In fact, across all industries, the average cart abandonment rate is 69.57%. The simple act of adding an item to the cart indicates a degree of interest and intent to purchase. This provides an opportunity for email marketing. An abandoned cart email may just be the extra nudge an interested buyer needs.


Post-Purchase Follow Up

Even though the transaction is complete, your obligations to a customer are not. The best way to build a trusting relationship, and ideally repeat sales, is to follow up. This lets your customer know that you appreciate their business and care about their satisfaction beyond the checkout page. Customers who shop in GearLaunch stores appreciate receiving a status update when their purchase goes into production and an additional shipping notice with tracking. It is an important piece of customer engagement that leads to returning, happy customers.

Milestone Events

Important events such as birthdays and anniversaries are ways to reconnect with a customer to build a personal relationship with them. By offering them a personalized discount code, you can also use this opportunity to make a sale.

emails e-commerce businesses send

Feedback Requests

What’s the easiest way to find out what your customers want? Ask! Customer surveys provide important information for your growing business.

Two common ways to approach feedback requests with your customers are incentivized and voluntary feedback.

  • Incentivized feedback will increase the likelihood customers will complete your survey, but your results may wind up biased toward people who only care about the incentive.
  • Voluntary feedback will draw answers from a genuinely dedicated audience, however, you may receive fewer answers.

Test both with your audience to see which strategy is most likely to produce the results you want. Listen to your customers and learn from the feedback they provide.

Win-Back Email Campaign

Don’t be alarmed if the majority of your email list is inactive or disengaged. This means they haven’t interacted with your emails and website in several months. It’s no secret that it costs more to gain a new customer than it does to keep an old one. Your email is already in their inbox and a win-back campaign is a perfect opportunity to remind them to come back.

Your campaign should include a series of targeted, personalized messages to give them a gentle nudge. You’ll want to include the following emails in your campaign.

  • We miss you. Come back! – It may be as simple as telling your customers you notice they’ve been gone for a while!
  • The Incentive Email – Give them a reason to return! You could include a discount, a promo, or free shipping!
  • The Last Try Email – For customers who haven’t engaged, give them one last chance with a HUGE incentive. If they don’t bite, move on.
emails e-commerce businesses send


Cross-selling and upselling are essentially two variations of product recommendations.

  • Cross-sells: Recommendations for a related or complementary product.
  • Upsells: Recommendations for a more expensive item, upgrades, or other add-ons.

These tactics are common for e-commerce businesses and most customers expect to see an upsell or cross-sell as part of the checkout process.

emails e-commerce businesses send

Ultimately, these recommendations help you achieve more revenue, but they also help create more satisfied customers. Keep these tips in mind as you send upsell emails:

  • Tailor upsells to complement products that the customer purchased in the past.
  • Give your customers a choice by showing more than one product, but limit the choices so they aren’t overwhelming.
  • Consider the spending power of your audience. If they previously purchased a mug for $25, avoid showing them a $45 hoodie. Your incentive should be less expensive than the original purchase.


Informative content is geared towards building rapport with your customers and show that you’re invested in helping them, not selling to them.

It’s important to find multiple ways to provide value for your audience. Consider sending an email centered around your brand by providing new ways to use your products, maintenance tips, or even the history or story behind your design.

We know how important email is to your e-commerce business which is why we have email automation included in the GearLaunch platform. You’ll have order confirmation, status update, shipping notification, and abandoned cart emails at your fingertips!

Let us help you get started today and start selling!

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on August 25, 2017, and has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

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