Why You Need to Build Your Ecommerce Email List

I think everyone can agree that creating and running and ecommerce business is tough. And sometimes, it’s really, really tough.

But the most important thing that every ecommerce merchant wants to know is how to really increase their sales.

Sometimes, it seems almost impossible.

But is it really?

It turns out that you can dramatically increase your sales by focusing on one simple channel that happens to have the highest return on investment (ROI) of any other marketing channel…

…coming in at $40 for every single dollar spent.

In today’s post to show you how can use email marketing campaigns for ecommerce to significantly increase your overall sales & made your email marketing campaign successful.

But in order to do that most effectively, you’ll need to begin by building up your ecommerce email marketing list.

Table of Contents

  • Why building your ecommerce email list is crucial
  • Tip #1: Use popups
  • Tip #2: Use attractive offers
  • Tip #3: Create a valuable lead magnet
  • What happens after you get their email addresses?

Why building your ecommerce email list is crucial

As an ecommerce merchant, you probably already know that about 3% of your visitors end up buying from you (sometimes even zero conversions)—meaning that generally 97% of visitors to your store don’t convert at all.

That means that they come to your site, look around, and then leave.

97%. Gone forever.

Well, that is, unless you grab their email addresses. When you have subscriber email addresses, you get a second chance to make another impression.

Maybe they didn’t buy from you the first time because it wasn’t the right time, or they were just shopping around, or your offer just didn’t convince them enough.

Whatever the cause is, if you get their email addresses, you can try again. After all, you already know that the subscriber is targeted (seeing as they visited your site already) and therefore more likely to buy from you.

That’s probably why for every $1 you spend on email marketing campaign, you get $40 back.


How do you get that 97% to leave their email addresses? Here are 3 great ways.

#1 Use popups

The first and most popular way for merchants to gather the email addresses of their visitors is to use popups.

But it’s important that you don’t annoy your visitors, so you shouldn’t just set your popups to randomly appear. Instead, set it for exit intent.

Exit-intent popups will only show to visitors as they’re getting ready to leave, such as when their mouse moves up to the address bar or to close the tab they’re on.

Most popup programs will allow you to set the timing for when it should appear. For example, on Omnisend’s platform, you have a choice of when to show, including for exit-intent.

use pops for email marketing success

There are other options for your popups, as you can see from above. Another great way is to only set the popup to appear after 15 or 30 seconds, or after they’ve scrolled 75% of the page.

You can adapt those amounts depending on the popup app you’re using for your store.

#2 Use attractive offers

Having a popup of some sort on your site will definitely help to get some of your visitors to subscribe.

However, if you really want to kick it up a notch, you need to give them something that they want.

Specifically, you should be offering an irresistible offer. This is especially true for the Black Friday through Christmas long shopping season.

The standard popup will have a request to sign up for the newsletter for great information. However, you can do better than that, and at the busiest shopping time of the year, you definitely should.

Make your offer attractive by offering a great discount or free shipping that will only be available to those visitors that sign up.

Your copy could be something like:

Sign up today to get 15% off your first order!


Sign up now to get FREE SHIPPING on your first order!

Obviously, you’ll have to adapt your message depending on what you’re able to offer. But remember, by converting a visitor into a subscriber (and then a buyer), you now have contact with them for as long as you need.

If they’ve bought from you once, they’ll be much more likely to buy from you again.

#3 Create a valuable lead magnet

So you’re probably asking:

What exactly is a lead magnet?

A lead magnet is an absolutely free, valuable and relevant resource you’re giving away in exchange for your visitor’s email address.

There are two important words in that definition:

free and valuable.

Your lead magnet must always be free, as that is the incentive you’re using to get your visitors’ email addresses.

But it must also be valuable, so that the visitor cannot help himself but give you his email address in return.

Normally, this resource is a PDF or ebook that you’ve created around a topic your visitors care about. For example, if you sell dog supplies, you can create a PDF entitled, “The 15 Easiest Tricks You Can Teach Your Dog in 1 Day.”

If you’re selling something related to fashion, like scarves, then you can create a (very visual) PDF entitled, “The 27 Color Combinations That’ll Make You Stand Out This Winter.”

You can mention your products in your PDF, but it isn’t necessary.

The purpose of the PDF is to provide enough perceived value that the visitors will freely give their email addresses.

Just remember that your resource must be relevant to your visitors. If you sell earrings, it makes no sense for you to create a list of the most adorable puppies of 2017, as you’ll get subscribers who aren’t really interested in your product.

What happens after you get their emails?

Getting your visitors’ emails is a great first step, but it isn’t the only step to great sales.

If you don’t use that email list with effective email marketing, you won’t see any sales. The best thing to do is to make sure you’ve got a great funnel or structure set up to lead your subscribers to their first purchase.

This is composed of many parts, but one of the most important is that you make your emails interesting in the first place.

If your email subject lines are plain and boring, and your content is irrelevant (and boring), then you won’t have any sales.

For example, if you really want to have huge sales for the upcoming Black Friday shopping weekend, you’ll need to get the best subject lines. That means using out the highest-converting words and phrases in your Black Friday campaigns to really pique your subscribers’ interest.

After that, you need to make sure your offers are interesting enough, and that you are continuing to keep contact with your subscribers.

If you only send one email to them in 6 months, they’ll probably unsubscribe from your list because they already forgot who you are.

Instead, keep your email newsletters coming regularly. Some bigger ecommerce businesses send emails every day, while others prefer to do it once every 2 weeks.

Whatever you decide on, keep it consistent and you’ll remain in your visitors’ minds.

With these tips, you’ll be able to establish a strong relationship with your subscribers who will eventually turn into buyers.

With that, you’ll have not only great sales (one time), but you’ll have customers who will turn into repeat buyers, and you won’t have to spend money on ads to get new customers.

Continue to grow your email list and you’ll have better and better sales.

Good luck!


Bernard is a content marketer with a passion for good research and helping ecommerce businesses with their email marketing needs. You can find him on Twitter and LinkedIn

Leave a Reply

You have to agree to the comment policy.