There has been a lot of requests for the full eCommere automation sequence. Now, there are prerequisites for this setup. Just because you have a store, doesn't mean you have the right automation system in place. I highly recommend using Active campaign
, InfusionSoft or another software with more complex/advanced automation capabilities.
What's the point of sophistication like this? Well here's the issue: most automation platforms do not link your lead generation to your shopping cart. In other words there is no communication for the system to know when you have made a sale.
In theory, and in practice, the customer can start receiving nurture sequences AND a post purchase sequence, if you have it setup. This is a huuuuge issue. We can really annoy customer especially if we are mailing them daily in a post purchase flow. And you should mail daily, but not twice a day. That can become excessive. If the users start getting bombarded with emails then they can report, unsubscribe and tarnish your IP reputation.
So what's the solution? You need an integrated software that CAN do all your presale, postsale and nurture email campaigns Doing this enables you fully integrate the platforms communication and build a coherent machine. No more ClickFunnels and Klaviyo and Active Campaign
and Mailchimp. Yuck. What a mess, I've been there. Data attribution is also messy. With one email platform you need one utm parameter to track.
So let's dive in.
The customer lifecycle is broken up into 3 stages. Pre-Purchase, Post Purchase and Bucket/Remnant. Each one of these stages represent a very different journey and mindset for the customer.
Pre-purchase customers can opt in to receive a lead magnet, newsletter, sweepstakes or coupon. These customers are effectively “Dropping by”, or browsing. They haven't committed to your brand and made a sale quite yet.
So this is the process of nurturing and building value with your customers so they can eventually build some trust with you. This trust is key in converting a prospective customer in to a paying customer.
How do they get on the list? Well we offer something in exchange for the user’s email. Here are some ideas:
- Weekly product showcase
- White papers
- Free ebooks
What do we do with them after? Well, if you are selling one product, create a sequence of emails relevant to that one product. Something that makes sense to the users. Something that is content based, but still pitches the product subtly.
Let's say you are marketing mosquito repellent fans. You can offer your potential customers information about mosquito borne infections like malaria or zika. You can do this for as little as 3 days to as much as 60 days if you can build the content. The best case scenario is to send daily emails related to certain topics. This will help the user build more trust and understand WHY they need the product.
Once they have exhausted the value sequence, you can put them into a general campaign. This can be a weekly product showcase or weekly product email selling the product directly. Home Depot and Dicks Sporting Goods do this very well. Get on their lists for some inspiration.
My favorite type of mailing. The list is warm, the sequencing is easy. Post purchase sequences are very profitable. Because the customer has already committed to your brand, it's easier to convert them again and again. If you're not doing this, it's like skipping retargeting, you're missing a TON of extra revenue. See my full post on how we made $842K without Shopify.
Post purchase customers need to continuously be sold additional products. Think about the customer lifecycle and journey. After the customer has bought, you should have an upsell flow setup, if not set one up.
Now, think about where the user drops off in the funnel. If they drop off at the front end sale then they are pre purchase. If they drop off after the front end sale, they are to be sold Upsell one. If they drop off at upsell 2, they are to be sold upsell 2. Make sense? Sell them what they don't have and link these campaigns together. (show screenshot how)
If you have your frontend automation setup and let's say it's 7 days. Then you setup the upsell one and that's 7 days. Then you sell upsell 2 and that's 7 days. Now you have 21 days of automations for your customers. This is a great auto-pilot revenue strategy.
They can be sold upsell, cross sells and other products that are relevant to the one they purchased. Once you know the user has received the item (IE The fulfilment team has fulfilled it and changed status or triggered the next automation) begin the post fulfillment emails.
Several of these emails can be offering an additional product for a steeper discount as a gift for friends or family.
Along side your sales sequence you want to consider a fulfillment sequence. A fulfillment sequence basically gets trigger when the order is fulfilled. From there you can calculate your average shipping time or find a way to integrate it to the fulfillment software you're using (Oberlo users).
Once the product is delivered to the customer you can start soliciting them for reviews, testimonials and feedback about the product. Create a separate page on your site specific to generating Feedback with specific instructions on how you want the customer to do it. We prefer video testimonial, but a lto of customers won't do it. You need to offer them a good deal to do it.
Here is a great place to gain feedback on their experience and improve the your customer service process. At this point you know the customer has received the main product, or is about to receive the main product and you should take advantage of this opportunity. Sell them more products.
Don't stop at the front-end sale. You can recoup a ton of your margin from front-end sales in the email sequences and using the Facebook retargeting
strategies I outline. Here are some additional opportunities:
- Upsells where they dropped off
- Video Reviews
- Additional cross sells
Then there is the bucket sequence. This is for users who have completed their journey. This can be anywhere from 30 days to 90 days. This can also be called the nurture sequence.
Here is an opportunity to sell them additional products and services related to your brand after they already had their experience (hopefully it was good) with you. Each one of these sales should be unique product or offer. Perhaps you can offer another one of your products as a gift for a loved one.
Once they have their product, and now trust you, it’s much easier to sell them additional products and services. But, make sure you setup a consistent nurture campaign after the fact and don’t let this list go silent.
There is a high chance they will be uninterested in doing additional business and go silent. Don’t let them. Keep contacting them via an automation daily or every other day. We call these campaigns the nurture campaigns.
Obviously, if you're not doing this you are missing out on HUGE opportunities for additional sales, testimonial videos, reviews etc. Every ecommerce store must have some sort of an automation baked into the process.
Whether you're on Shopify, WooCommerce, Magento or anything else, do not skip this step. Yes, this includes corporate stores. Having just “campaign” style blasts burn out your list fast. You should instead create a coherent marketing strategy that actually provides values, engages users and increases sales and opportunities for customer interaction.
I tried to write this fast so you can have a general idea of what to do and get implementing immediately.
Please ask questions and add your comments below.