Fashion and Apparel: Best Ecommerce Email Marketing

row of hanging shirts of various colors and sizes to denote fashion and apparel email marketing

To be honest, I’m not a big fan of one-size-fits-all solutions. A one-size-fits-all dress isn’t going to look as good as a tailored option. And one-size-fits-all email marketing advice isn’t usually ideal for ecommerce stores either.

Should a fashion and apparel ecommerce team really be evaluating themselves against the same performance metrics as a toys and games business? We’re talking about stores in very different industries, with different customer lifecycles, price points, and buyer personas.

So to deliver the best-fitting marketing advice, the team at Klaviyo decided it was time to take a closer look at email performance by industry.

One of our marketing analytics pros combed through thousands of accounts to evaluate the differences between industries.

The goal was to answer questions like, “Do some industries rely more on automated flows versus one-time campaigns?” and “Do all the top performers across all industries include the same type of content in the same automated flows?”

The analysis also compared the top and bottom quartiles — the best performers and the worst performers — with “best performance” defined by ROI or how many products got ordered.

Let’s take a look at a few of the most interesting finds from ecommerce stores in Fashion and Apparel related to targeting specific audiences and creating a winning welcome series.

Targeted campaigns deliver

First of all, the top performers in the Fashion and Apparel industry send a lot more emails than the worst performers. In fact, they send 364% more campaigns (20 vs. 4) than the bottom quartile.

But they’re not just sending any email campaigns. Not surprisingly, the email campaigns that had a strategic reason for being sent performed best. Standout examples in this category included emails sent to a specific audience or announcing a new product or collection.

Here’s a great example of a new collection announcement from fashion brand Doen:

The bottom-performing campaigns tended to include just a picture of a product or announced a sale.

How to improve your campaign performance

If you’re looking to improve the performance of your fashion and apparel email campaigns, segmentation is a great place to start. This means being very deliberate about which portions of your email list you send any given email to.

There are endless ways that you can decide to segment your list.

It really comes down to the data that you have available and what you believe will be the best way to get a super-targeted message to a particular segment.

Here are a few ideas to get you started on segmentation:

    • Location (country/city/region)
    • VIPs (based on previous average order value or amount of purchases made)
    • Past purchase history
    • Sign up method (in store vs. online)
      Product interests

An often-debated question is how many segments a brand should create.

In another recent report, we looked at the correlation between the total ecommerce revenue of a business and the amount of segments it had built out.

We found that, on average, companies with an annual revenue of under $100K in 2016 had 13.36 segments. Those with annual revenue of $100K to $1M had 29.96; companies with $1M to $10M had 43.96.

Meanwhile, companies with more than $10M in 2016 annual revenue had an average of 133.97 segments. This can be partly explained by simply having a bigger list, but it may also reflect a strategic interest in segmenting.

Eager for more on this topic? Head over to the definitive guide to email marketing segmentation.

A welcome series can be a game changer

Our industry-specific analysis found that companies sending a welcome series are making 600% more on average for flows (compared to all industries making 15% less).

Across all industries, a whopping 73% of the top-performing companies (by ordered product) have set up a welcome series compared with 66% on average.

Many of the top performers include their brand story in their welcome series, like Marine Layer.

Improve your welcome series by segmenting by signup method

If you’re in the Fashion & Apparel industry, building out targeted campaigns and a great welcome series are the way to go.

If you’re in the Fashion & Apparel industry and already have a welcome series up and running, you can make it even better by segmenting by signup method.

Segmentation isn’t just a great strategy for email campaigns — it also works for your welcome series. The key here is to think about the type of messages that would make the most sense to each audience.

Let’s look at a few examples:

Embedded signups on your site
If someone has signed up through an embedded form on your site, this one’s the simplest: you can send them your standard welcome series featuring some of your most popular products.

Check out page sign up
When someone signs up during the checkout process, they deserve a special thank you. After all, they’ve already purchased from your store! They don’t need an overly sales-y or lengthy welcome series to get them to convert. Instead, you can focus on strengthening the relationship or even encouraging them to share user-generated content on social media.

Exit intent signup
Entering your email address into a popup as you exit a store sends a pretty strong message. It says, “I was interested enough to look around, but not motivated enough to buy — although I still want to stay in touch.” These folks would be a great segment to send a discount or promotion to right off the bat in a welcome series.

Blog sign up
It’s likely that the subscribers who sign up on a blog page are, at least initially, more interested in keeping up with your latest content than an immediate sale. Use this welcome series as a chance to nurture the relationship by showing them the types of content they can expect to see on the blog, thanking them, and possibly sharing the stories behind some of the products on your site.

Learn more about the top-converting welcome series.


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