How to create an ecommerce email campaign (easy step-by-step guide)

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Email campaigns are not as complicated to produce as you might think. You don't need fancy and expensive software, nor do you need a degree in marketing. Follow our simple guide for tips on why you need to use email campaigns to boost your dropshipping sales and simple steps for how to do it.

What is an email campaign?

An email campaign is a series of promotional emails sent to customers. It usually includes advertising a product or offer, updates, news, surveys, seasonal campaigns or abandoned basket reminders. Email is a trusted and affordable way to keep customers informed and build customer relationships.

Why should I create an email campaign for my dropshipping business?

There are many advantages to creating an email campaign for your ecommerce retail website. It's a direct way for customers to enjoy receiving offers, promotions, and updates from companies they like. Take a look at these pros and cons:

Pros Cons
A cost-effective tool. Risk of emails marked as spam by customers.
Targeted marketing to send a specific offer to a specific customer segment. Your email list can become low quality if it's not highly targeted.
Use automation to save time. Investment and research into content creation is needed.
Reach customers directly. It's competitive to get your email noticed by customers.
Measure the results to see how the email campaign was successful and where to improve. Be careful of regulatory compliance.

The benefits of email campaigns for ecommerce marketing

1. Email has an impressive return on investment (ROI)

According to a report by Omnisend in 2022, email marketing has an average ROI of EUR 40 per EUR 1 you spend. This has the highest ROI of any marketing channel.

2. A low-cost marketing technique

The average cost of email marketing can be EUR 300–500 per month for a medium-sized company using an agency. A large business could spend up to EUR 2,000 per month. If you were to create email campaigns yourself, this could be completely free. Considering the ROI rate, email is an extremely cost-effective way to promote your business.

3. Sending personalised emails has big advantages

Personalised marketing messages to your customers are the fast lane to better sales. In 2023, McKinsey research suggested that personalisation reduces customer acquisition (the amount of money needed to spend on marketing per customer that leads to a sale) by 50% and improves revenues by 5–15%. What does personalisation mean? Tailoring how and what you say to a very specific group of your customers.

4. High conversions when customers opt-in

Experience higher open rates and click-through rates by obtaining customer consent for marketing emails. Achieve an impressive ROI of EUR 40 when customers actively subscribe to your email list. This stands in stark contrast to the dismal average open rate of non-permission emails, which hovers around a mere 5%. Remember, sending promotional emails without proper authorisation from recipients violates the stringent General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) laws in the EU.

5. Use email automation to your advantage

Make the most of email marketing software to stay in touch with your customers as they move through their buying journey. Set it up to automatically send welcome emails when new customers sign up, remind them about items left in their online basket, and suggest products they might like based on their previous purchases. By personalising these emails, you can boost the chances of turning leads into sales. Research from Statista shows that the industry for software that helps companies personalise customer experiences is expected to be worth a huge USD 11.6 billion by 2026.

6. Easily measure your email marketing performance

Automated email marketing software does the number crunching for you. It helps you see what works and what doesn't in your email marketing efforts, understand your audience better, and make more money.

The key metrics and their definitions are below.

Metric Definition
Open rate The percentage of emails that are opened by recipients.
Unsubscribe rate The percentage of email recipients who choose to unsubscribe after opening a promotional email.
Click-through rate (CTR) The percentage of email recipients who clicked on at least one link in the promotional email.
Conversion rate The percentage of email recipients who completed a desired action, such as making a purchase or signing up for a newsletter.
Bounce rate The percentage of emails that were undelivered or bounced back, indicating they did not reach the recipient's inbox.
Share rate The percentage of email recipients who clicked the "forward to a friend" or "share this" buttons to share the email content with others.
Overall ROI The total revenue generated from your email marketing efforts is divided by the total expenditure, indicating the effectiveness of your email campaigns.

7. Customers prefer email

Email marketing stands out as the preferred communication channel for customers seeking brand engagement. Unlike calls and texts, emails provide a manageable way for individuals to stay informed. According to The Future of Commerce: 2023 Edition by Square Up, a notable 60% of US consumers express a preference for brand communication via email, surpassing the 46% who favour social media. Similarly, in the UK, 57% of British consumers report reading more than half of the emails they receive, as per data from the Data & Marketing Association in 2019.

How to create an email campaign

Step Details
1. Define Marketing Goals Before producing your email, clarify its purpose, target audience, and desired call to action (CTA). Whether advertising a product, sharing an offer, or prompting sign-ups, understanding these elements shapes the effectiveness of your campaign.
2. Determine Campaign Volume Choose from various email formats, including newsletters, promotional shots, and order updates, tailored to your marketing campaign's needs. Considering inbox saturation, opt for concise, segmented emails distributed over weeks for maximum impact.
3. Select Email Marketing Software While manual email sending is feasible for small lists, investing in email marketing software offers automation, personalisation, and analytics benefits as your business expands. Several affordable options, such as MailerLite and MailChimp, cater to startup dropshipping businesses.
4. Craft Compelling Content Structure your email with an attention-grabbing subject line, concise preview text, and an engaging header. Persuasive copy and clear CTAs drive action, aligning with your brand's tone and personality for consistency.
5. Enhance Visual Appeal Incorporate high-quality images, thoughtful design, and dynamic elements like GIFs to captivate recipients' attention. Clean layouts, vibrant colours, and easy-to-read text contribute to an aesthetically pleasing email campaign.
6. Send and Monitor Performance Before sending, ensure your email is error-free and functional. Monitor campaign performance through key metrics like open rate, click-through rate, bounce rate, and conversion rate, provided by your email marketing software's dashboard.

By adhering to these steps, you can develop effective email campaigns that resonate with your audience and drive desired outcomes for your dropshipping business.


In summary, creating an effective ecommerce email campaign doesn't have to be complicated. Our simple guide empowers you to navigate the process smoothly, even without fancy software or extensive marketing knowledge. Using email marketing brings many benefits, like direct customer engagement, impressive returns on investment, and more sales opportunities. From setting goals to writing engaging content and tracking performance, each step is crucial for success in your dropshipping business. Embrace email campaigns as a valuable tool in your ecommerce strategy, strengthening customer relationships and boosting your profits.

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