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Not up to scratch: email marketing campaigns of top UK brands found wanting

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Multichannel and ecommerce consultants Practicology released the results of an investigation into the email marketing campaigns of the UK’s 100 best known retailers and found a great number of needed improvement.

The top brands included Tesco, Halfords, Mothercare, Ikea and Marks & Spencer. Having signed up for email marketing for all 100 top UK brands, Practicology found that 91 required no account registration, 15 never contacted them again, and only 67 sent out a welcome email.

Just 48% of retailers who responded did so with ‘responsive emails’: emails designed to reflect the device used to open them. Even retailers with responsive websites sent non-responsive emails, including Boho, Sports Direct, Lakeland and Argos.

“Retailers who have invested in a dedicated mobile site or a responsive site, but have not moved their email marketing to responsive design should think about this as a next step,” advised Will Dymott, Practicology’s Head of Data & Analytics. “If consumers are browsing your website and even transacting on smartphones, then they will be opening your emails on those devices too.”

During the six month period of Practicology’s investigation several major holidays occurred, including Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and Easter. Despite this, only 47% of the major retailers Practicology signed up for acknowledged just one of them.

“It seems perverse that so many brands would ask for a customer’s email address and then do nothing with it,” continued Dymott. “But even for those brands that did begin to contact us, there are many improvements that could be made. A well-constructed welcome programme, followed up with a grow-and-nurture programme which begins to tailor email content, should deliver you first time buyers and convert them into more valuable repeat customers in time.”

Published on Friday 28 August by Philip Gallagher

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