Avari Blog

Have Them Clicking, Not Twiddling, with Back-In-Stock Emails

[fa icon="calendar"] May 14, 2018 / by Jake Stott

avari-back-in-stock-emailsIt’s time to discuss an email that you may or may not be using, but which could probably use an update either way: the back-in-stock email. If you’re not already giving your customers the option of being notified when a desired item is back in the store, you should consider it; it lets them know you’re paying attention to what they want.

If you already send these emails out, it’s important to revisit the email and make sure you’re making the most of it. Only today I received an email from a major e-commerce player telling me that the sold-out item I wanted a month ago was back in stock. But there was nothing very personalized about the message; the only thing I could do was click a link to go to the website. #BORING

Why Should You Send Back-In-Stock Emails?

Back-in-stock emails are transactional in nature, which means the people opting for them are not necessarily receiving your promotional messages. But the emails are still a win for your company, because they mean extra exposure and the chance to both inform your customer and potentially make an additional sell.

According to Marketing Metrics, “the probability of selling to an existing customer is 60-70%,” while “the probability of selling to a new prospect is 5-20%.” A GO-Gulf infographic on the importance of online customer retention noted that “eCommerce spending for new customers is on average $24.50, compared to $52.50 for repeat customers.” At the same time, “it costs 6-7 times more to acquire a new customer than retain an existing one.” With figures like these, why wouldn’t you focus your energies on making the next sell with a customer whose wallet is already in his or her hand?

What Should Your Back-In-Stock Email Include?

Now that you’re convinced that back-in-stock emails are worth your while, you might be wondering what will make them stand out. To help you out, here are some best practices.

First, include a quick line reminding the customer why the email is being sent. This doesn’t have to be elaborate, nor should it be. Keep it simple, and include a photo of the item to help jog the customer’s memory, especially if it’s been awhile.

Next should be your call to action. Make it big and beautiful! Additionally, rather than linking to the website, link to the item itself, or consider making a button that adds the item directly to the customer’s cart.

Additionally, Fawn Young, a marketing strategist at Bronto, suggests a secondary call to action at the bottom of your email, which prompts recipients to subscribe to your promotional email list. Not everyone does this, so consider the pros and cons of whether or not it’s something your store should do.

Back to My #BORING Email

What I found amazing while looking at my inbox is that just on the side of my browser, this major e-commerce retailer was still retargeting ads for me to click on to essentially buy something else! Well, in the world of dynamic email content, why not also give me product recommendations within the email itself?

Include Product Recommendations in Your Back-In-Stock Emails


Just as our example email includes links to personalized product recommendations, so too should yours. In case your customer couldn’t wait and found the backordered item at another shop, there’s no reason why you can’t still be relevant and interesting. And because predictive models take into account many more data points than most retargeting engines do, these in-email suggestions will likely be more accurate than what appears on the side of the browser.

Let’s Summarize

Make sure to send out those back-in stock emails. But also make sure to personalize them by using Dynamic Content. Product Recommendations are the best bet, because you can ensure your customers will be clicking while they wait, and not just twiddling their thumbs!

To get started making the most of your transactional emails, take a look at our Predictive Transactional Email Infographic and Guide. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to contact me today, and follow @Jake_Stott on Twitter for more tips.

Topics: Dynamic Content, Transactional Email

Jake Stott

Written by Jake Stott

Jake is the Brand Relationship Manager at AVARI, where he specializes in helping brands boost their email marketing efforts. He’s British, loves marketing strategy and travel, has a pet ostrich, and is a sponsored Club Mate Athlete.