One way to generate more sales is to follow up with customers who’ve already bought something at your store.
Trying to find new customers is definitely one way to increase revenue. But following up with shoppers who’ve already chosen to buy something from you is often easier.
While you could manually reach out to your customers, you can actually automate the process of sending them follow-up emails.
Thanks to some easy-to-use extensions for WooCommerce, you can quickly set up custom workflows to handle follow-up emails.
These workflows can be configured to automatically send a follow-up email after a range of actions has taken place.
For example, you could send follow-up emails to new customers who’ve just made their first purchase, rewarding them with a discount coupon for becoming a customer.
Alternatively, you could send follow-up emails recommending products to customers similar to ones they’ve purchased before.
Another option is sending friendly reminders to customers who haven’t shopped with you for a while, letting them know that you’re still in business.
If you want to do more with the customers you already have, setting up automated follow-up emails is one easy and effective way to do so.
Benefits of Automating Follow-Up Emails
As just mentioned, there are many ways to use automated follow-up emails to increase sales at your eCommerce store.
Thankfully, setting up a follow-up workflow doesn’t take long. If you choose the right tool, you’ll also get access to a good selection of predefined workflows. These templates help you get started without having to spend much time thinking of ways to use this functionality.
This guide focuses on sending follow-up emails to new customers at your store and giving them a reason to make a second purchase. But there are many other ways you can use automated follow-ups at your eCommerce store, such as:
- Reclaiming abandoned shopping carts.
- Letting customers know their saved payment details are about to expire.
- Rewarding repeat customers with loyalty discounts.
- Reminding customers to leave a review at your store.
- Introducing your points and rewards program.
- Letting them know they have items on their wish list.
All of these workflows can help to increase sales at your store and, in the case of customer reviews, help promote it to a broader audience.
But how do you go about setting up automated follow-up emails? Well, if you’re using WooCommerce for your store or plan to do so, some handy extensions make it very easy.
About the AutomateWoo Extension
AutomateWoo is one tool available to you if you’re using Woocommerce for your store and would like to automatically contact customers after they’ve made a purchase or meet some other criteria.
AutomateWoo can do a lot more as well, so it’s well worth checking out if you’d like to automate some of the existing marketing-related processes at your store or get inspiration for new processes you can implement.
Thanks to the Trigger, Rules, and Actions approach of AutomateWoo, this extension makes it relatively easy to start setting up marketing-focused automation at your store.
For example, you can create an automation that’s triggered when a customer makes a purchase. The rule determines whether the purchase meets certain criteria, such as if the order includes a product from a specific category. Finally, the action defines what happens when the workflow or automation is triggered. This could be a predefined action, such as sending a follow-up email to the customer, or a custom action created by a developer.
You can also schedule automations or workflows to run at certain times, such as during a promotional period or only on weekends.
Some of the best features of AutomateWoo include:
- Easy-to-use automation builder.
- Ability to automatically send follow-up emails to customers.
- Abandoned cart follow-up functionality.
- Ability to send reminders for expiring payment cards and review requests.
- User-friendly dashboard for tracking the effectiveness of workflows.
- Integrates with the Subscriptions add-on for WooCommerce.
At $99/year, AutomateWoo is a good value extension for WooCommerce, especially if you plan to use many of its features.
About the Follow-Ups Extension
Another option to consider if you want to contact customers automatically via email after a purchase is the Follow-Ups WooCommerce extension.
This extension can also automatically send follow-ups via Twitter, tagging the customer into tweets that are automatically created after a purchase.
Follow-Ups costs the same as AutomateWoo ($99/year). It mainly focuses on email follow-ups rather than all the other marketing aspects that AutomateWoo covers. However, it’s a good option if you’re only interested in automated emails and would like more functionality in that area.
For this guide, we’ll cover AutomateWoo, as it should appeal to a wider audience. Still, both extensions are good and worth exploring further if you’re serious about automating email follow-ups.
Setting Up Automated Email Follow Ups With AutomateWoo
Once you’ve purchased AutomateWoo from the WooCommerce site, you can upload the plugin to your WordPress site. To do so, navigate to the Add Plugins screen by clicking on Plugins → Add New from the admin sidebar menu.
From there, click on the Upload Plugin button, then browse to the location on your computer where you downloaded the plugin file. Select the plugin file, and click the Install Now button, followed by the Activate button.
Creating Your First Workflow with AutomateWoo
You can start using the extension by clicking on the AutomateWoo → Dashboard sidebar menu item. From there you can browse the workflow templates or presets.
As mentioned earlier, workflows consist of triggers, actions, and rules. So to get started, you must choose a trigger for your workflow.
But first, you must either choose a preset workflow or decide to create your own from scratch.
Selecting a Trigger
If you want to create a workflow from scratch, you can go to the AutomateWoo → Workflows screen and then click the Add Workflow button.
For this example, we’ll create a simple follow-up email that’s sent to new customers at your store. When a customer makes their first purchase, they’ll get sent an email with a coupon code they can use for money off their next purchase.
The first step for this workflow is to set the trigger to Order Completed via the dropdown menu. You can also add a delay that controls when the email is sent out.
For this example, setting a delay of two hours should reduce the risk of this follow-up email getting lost among the other emails that are generated by WooCommerce when a purchase is made.
Creating a Rule
Next up, you can add a rule to the workflow.
For this example, we’re sending a follow-up email to new customers only. Therefore, the Order – Is Customer’s First rule is the one to choose. When selecting a rule, you might get some ideas for other workflows you could create for your store with AutomateWoo as you browse the list.
AutomateWoo does let you combine rules to create more focused or advanced workflows, but for this example, a single rule is enough.
Defining an Action
Now you can create an action that’s performed by the workflow. Again, you can see from the dropdown list that there are lots of types of actions that are possible. However, for this example, we’ll choose the Send Email action.
You can then use the fields to build the email. For example, you can use the WooCommerce email variables and merge tags to automatically insert the customer’s email into the To field. AutomateWoo lists the available variables in one of the side panels so you can just click on the one you want to use.
If you want to give new customers a discount coupon after they’ve made their first order at your store, you’ll need to create a coupon first. To do so, click on the Marketing → Coupons sidebar menu item. Then create a coupon, such as 10 percent off any order.
Once you’ve created the coupon, you can use the customer.generate_coupon variable to insert a unique version of that coupon into the follow-up email.
Now, when the customer receives the follow-up email, it will contain a unique coupon code they can use once to get a discount on their next order.
When you’ve finished creating the action, you can use the Save button to enable the workflow at your store.
Other Features of AutomateWoo
As mentioned, AutomateWoo has many features that make it easy to recommend.
As well as creating one or more workflows that send automated follow-up emails, you can also use the conversion tracking functionality to see how effective your emails are.
Sending an SMS from a workflow is another way to use this extension to automate marketing processes at your WooCommerce store. Multilingual support via the WPML plugin is a feature that some store owners might be interested in.
The AutomateWoo Refer a Friend and Birthday add-ons give you even more options for growing your store with automation.
As you can see, it’s pretty easy to start using automation at your WooCommerce store.
For just a few hours of work, you can set up workflows that run in the background, automatically carrying out marketing-related tasks at your store for as long as you keep them running.
Whether you want to automatically recommend related products to your customers, reach out to new customers, recover abandoned shopping carts, or a whole host of other actions, AutomateWoo is a tool that can do all that and more.
If you have any questions about follow-up emails and WooCommerce automations in general, please comment below.