Retail Newsletters – The Consumer Perspective

At Swym, our mission is to help Retailers create a more engaging, seamless cross-channel experience for their shoppers. In an attempt to better understand consumer expectations in the context of email, we conducted a survey of our target users on what they thought of Retail newsletters, and uncovered some pretty cool insights. We wanted to share those insights with the community because we think they are valuable in the broader context. Over the next few posts, we will go into depth on each of those gleaned from our survey.

The Average Retail consumer:

In terms of audience profiles, the respondents represent the typical shopper – Consumers that frequent their favorite Retail stores a few times a month (not including grocery stores), are mobile-savvy, and a little more than half of them believe they spend at least $100 a month at these stores on average. About 60% of our respondents were women, and 2/3rd were between the ages of 20 and 40.

58% of users said they’ve shared their email addresses with the Retail stores. That is 6 out of every 10 users telling the store that they’d like to hear from them! Granted the stores offer compelling incentives for users to sign up (such as spot discounts and special offers) but this is precisely what makes Email such a powerful channel to build engagement and loyalty; it is one of the few channels where shoppers opt themselves in and are interested in communicating with the retail brands.

It doesn’t get more powerful than that.

So we asked these users what motivated them to share their email. No surprise there, almost 3 in 4 do so to receive information on Offers and Deals on products that might interest them. A little over 50% do so to hear about new product announcements, product catalogs etc. And 1/3 rd of the users say they’d like to hear about special promotions, sale events and the like.

It is clear from their responses that consumers sign up for these emails because there is strong underlying affinity to the retailer and they are willing to listen. Email is the medium that facilitates a great first step to building a relationship between them.

What it really means: 

Only 16% of users even read most or all of these emails. Take a minute to reflect on that: Of the 6 out of 10 consumers that put their hand up and said they’d like to hear from the retailer, only one of the 6 is actually reading those emails on a regular basis. The other 5 simply aren’t finding enough value – despite them wanting to.

Email newsletters open rate

When users were asked if they were receiving the value from these retailer emails they signed up for, the vast majority felt they weren’t and gave us some insightful responses.

Stay tuned for our next post where we detail what they told us.

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