Many online businesses have discovered how well this works, and have built opt in strategies into their online stores.
The idea is simple.
Encourage customers to give you their email addresses so you can send them news and information via email.
Generally, there are two types of email communications you'll want to have with your customers.
The first is alerts or updates that keep customers informed about promotions, new products, and new content.
The second involves online newsletters providing articles and product tips.
Either option seems to work as statistics show that 79% of Internet users have chosen to receive email information from web sites.
Used properly, opt in email strategies are a great way to keep loyal customers and attract new ones to your store.
The following are tips that will start your opt in strategy on the right path.
The first tip might seem trite, but it bears repeating.
Any prospective or returning customers will not be pleased with a newsletter that's nothing but a sales pitch.
You should always attempt to provide useful, relevant information to your customers.
Also, you should be specific and let the customer know exactly what they are getting when they sign up.
Will they get the latest store specials? Website updates? Nothing can turn a customer away quicker than bombarding them with useless information.
You should also make it easy for customers to unsubscribe.
They may want to remove themselves from your list for various reasons.
They may be going away or changing their email address.
You don't want to overdo it either.
Remember that most of those who spend a fair amount of time online hate spam.
So, don't make yourself frequent or annoying.
For example, sending out email messages several times a week is overkill.
Always try and keep in mind that the main reason you're sending the emails, is to increase your customer base or keep the customers you already have.
With that in mind, carefully consider the content of the messages you send.
Design them to appeal to a sense of customer loyalty and repeat business.
One of the best ways to do this is to give preferred customer incentives like faster checkout times and discounts on future purchases in exchange for repeat business.
Remember too that it's important to have a good customer service program and return policy.
All these things should be stressed in an online opt in email program.
Remember to keep adding fresh content on a regular basis as well.
If your content becomes stale, regular customers may lose interest in regularly visiting your website.
A good opt in email program could also include mention of an available online order history and personalized wish lists.