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Using Site Search Tools to Supercharge Your Email Marketing Campaigns

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How do we do all of this? We incorporate our site search data into our merchandising efforts.
Let’s take a look at how we can do this.
Site Search Merchandising – What Is It.
Site search data allows you to determine the best performing products and categories. It tells you what visitors are looking for right now. It also tells you whether a product is fading in popularity, or just starting to rise to the top.
This information gives you the knowledge to create relevant, targeted emails for your lists, and dramatically increases the probability of getting your emails opened, your offerings clicked on, and your products purchased.
With our flagship Site Search technology, clients get access to a powerful and thorough back-end management tool with detailed merchandising tools. These tools provide users the ability to create unique one-time landing pages, add banners like ‘Top Seller’ to individual products, or to highlight entire product categories, among other features.
All of these features are fueled by corresponding site search data and our intelligent learning algorithms.
What you’re left with is an automated selling process, where the best products are pushed to the top of search results in real-time and strategic banners entice additional sales. We have an idea of what site search merchandising is, now let’s talk about why we should do it.
Why Bother With Merchandising for Email Campaigns?
Do you need to bother with strategic merchandising for email blasts? If you’re okay with low open rates, rising unsubscriptions, or unnecessarily spamming the people on your email list – then you have nothing to worry about. Business as usual.
But, if you want to increase your relevancy to the customer, start offering them products they want, and increase your email marketing metrics in the process – then merchandising is the first step to get you there.
There are a number of reasons why you should do all of this, we’ve mentioned a few below:
1. Conversions. Improving the relevancy of the products featured in your emails means that customers will begin to see products they want in your emails – and will click-thru and convert more often as a result.
2. Relevancy. Personally, after a company sends me about 5 emails I really don’t care about, I normally unsubscribe. By showing customers popular items or products they want, you increase your relevancy to that person, and they stay on your list as a result.
3. Reduce Inventory. Keywords are great at signifying if a product is going out of style, or is about to break into mainstream popularity. If you know that a season is changing or a products popularity is fading, you can prepare an End of Season / Big Sale campaign to shed some of that extra inventory.
4. Increase Open Rates. Once your email list sees their personalized headers and thoughtfully curated list of product recommendations, they will open up more to your email campaigns. Over time, this translates into steadily increasing open rates for your emails.
5. Sales. We can’t forget about sales! Increased open rates, higher click-thru’s, and a targeted list of products combine to create a perfect selling storm. Combining personalization with powerful merchandising is a recipe for selling success.
We feel that these are some of the most compelling reasons. So we know what the idea is, and why we should merchandise our email marketing … how on Earth do we get started with all of this?
How To Create Compelling Emails With Merchandising
Using site search data to merchandise products for your email marketing isn’t an incredibly intense process, it just takes a bit of insight and a generated URL.
The entire process begins with site search keyword data. What products are people searching for? What words do they use to describe those products? Are there any keywords that are generating poor results?
Through our reporting system, you can see a list of the best/worst performing keywords. From here, determine the products, brand, or category that you want to highlight. Here a few tips on selecting superb keywords:
If users are searching for similar keywords (television, stereo, home entertainment) try creating a category landing page, like Entertainment or Home Theatre. The demand is already there (in your data) so why not serve these products directly to customers in a beautiful email / landing page?
Poorly performing keywords can be a result of not carrying a specific brand or product. If you happen not to carry a specific brand users are looking for, you can setup synonym redirects to continue providing relevant results despite not carrying that brand.
Where are you in the year? The end of a season? End of your fiscal year? Christmas? Take advtange of common holidays / shared occasions with custom landing pages geared towards the occasion.
We know what we’re going to merchandise, we just need to set up our landing page. Nextopia’s merchandising rules allow you to load specific landing pages when a designated term is searched on your site or Google.
We’re going to populate the landing page with the products, promotions, and categories that we just determined when looking at our keyword data. Once your landing page is created and populated, it’s time to generate a PPC link that can be used in search and sent out to your email lists. You can take care of that in our back-end system as well.
The best part about all of this? Your targeted landing pages are even more effective because you’re using your site search keywords, which is the language your customers use to describe these products.
Targeted landing pages paired with targeted messaging creates a potent sales pitch. These search-based landing pages lead customers closer to a sale than traditional landing pages because they use familiar terminology and display only products and offerings that visitors are interested in.
Targeting and personalization is critical to effective email marketing, and shouldn’t be overlooked in this process. Scott Langdon, managing partner of SEO Company HigherVisibility, explained that one of the biggest problems he sees is a client ignoring different audiences. He said, “We see clients come through with great ideas for excellent and engaging content for their email marketing campaigns, but oftentimes they forget the importance of making that content targeted. The more personalized you can make your content; the more likely someone will convert. You want them to feel like you’re talking to them directly, with relevant information, as opposed to just being another email on a list of addresses.”
We also dug up additional ideas on how to use search data to merchandise products.
Econsultancy recommends sharing keyword data with your writers/salespeople so they can use better terminology when communicating with potential customers.
MultiChannel Merchant says using featured banners can help reinforce your key messaging.
WebMarketingToday has an incredible post which helps you determine which products to push to the top of search results, based on your business objectives.
Going Forward – Did Any of That Pay Off?
We’re not interested in guessing the success of campaigns. How do we incorporate solid data and analytics to guage whether or not the merchandising was worth the effort? Through a combination of our detailed site search analytics and your eCommerce Google Analytics, we can determine the impact our landing page efforts had on our bottom line.
When looking at your Nextopia search reports, you can see how many times the trigger keywords passed through your search. With that data in hand, we can head over to Google Analytics to see the impact those keywords had on our conversions and sales. Try it for yourself once, and we know you’ll be impressed with the performance!
What do you know, by combining your email marketing with site search data, you can even get more robust analytics in the process!
And there you have it. How to use your site search data to better merchandise your products and create more compelling email campaigns as a result. These are so effective because they showcase products your customers are looking for and describe them in a way that’s familiar to the customer.
It’s like a personalized shopping guide for each one of your customers!
Have you used custom landing pages before, how did that go for you? Do you want some tips on how to run your own landing page email campaign? This is a really exciting topic for us and we’d love to hear your thoughts. As always, we can be reached at @Nextopia or in-person at 800-360-2191.

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Email marketing can be frustrating at times. Low open rates and an increasing amount of unsubscribers can take its toll. Despite changing your offerings, providing email-only incentives, and perfecting your written copy, things still aren’t picking up. What gives?

There has to be a way. Something we can all do to give our emails the exciting and enticing feel they once had. It turns out there is—provide a personalized email with highly targeted offerings.

The days of sporadically choosing promotions or under-performing products to highlight in email blasts is done. Today, we’re using hard data and site search merchandising to strategically determine the best products, promotions, and prices to include in your email marketing efforts.

How do we do all of this? We incorporate our site search data, and Nextopia’s merchandising tools into our marketing efforts. Let’s take a look at how it’s done.

The Basics: Site Search Data and Merchandising

Site search data allows you to determine the best performing products and categories, based on the actual product search data from your customers. It tells you what visitors are looking for right now. It also tells you whether a product is fading in popularity, or just starting to rise to the top.

This information gives you the knowledge to create relevant, targeted emails for your lists, and dramatically increases the probability of getting your emails opened, your offerings clicked on, and your products purchased. Did you notice a certain keyword with product matches that have higher than normal margins? Maybe you should plan your next email blast around that product. Did you discover that a keyword that you thought was performing well actually isn’t? Perhaps you should scale back your marketing efforts around that specific offering.

With our flagship Site Search technology, Nextopia’s clients get access to a powerful and thorough back-end management tool with detailed merchandising tools. These tools provide users the ability to create unique one-time landing pages, add banners like ‘Top Seller’ to individual products, or to highlight entire product categories, among other features. All of these features are fueled by corresponding site search data and our intelligent adaptive algorithms.

What you’re left with is an automated selling process, where the best products are pushed to the top of search result or customized page in real-time and strategic banners entice additional sales.

Why Bother With Merchandising for Email Campaigns?

Do you need to bother with strategic merchandising for email blasts? If you’re okay with low open rates, rising unsubscriptions, or unnecessarily spamming the people on your email list—then you have nothing to worry about. But, if you want to increase your relevancy to the customer, start offering them products they want, and increase your sales in the process—then utilizing site search merchandising in your email campaigns is the first step to get you there.

Using site search data to merchandise products for your email marketing isn’t an incredibly intense process, it just takes a bit of insight and an easily-generated URL. The entire process begins with site search keyword data. What products are people searching for? What words do they use to describe those products? Are there any keywords that are generating poor results?

Through our reporting system, you can see a list of the best and worst performing keywords. From here, determine the products, brand, or category that you want to highlight. If users are searching for similar keywords (television, stereo, home entertainment) try creating a category landing page, like ‘Entertainment’ or ‘Home Theater’. The demand is already there (in your data) so why not serve these products directly to customers in a beautiful email / landing page?

DigiQuick_Capture

No that we know what we’re going to merchandise, we just need to set up our landing page. Nextopia’s merchandising rules allow you to load specific landing pages when a designated term is searched on your site. By using these URL’s as hyperlinks in your email content, you can guide your customers to a ready-to-buy page that matches your content.

Where are you in the year? The end of a season? End of your fiscal year? Christmas? Take advantage of common holidays with custom landing pages geared towards the occasion. When the user clicks through to your Black Friday Sale in their email, they’ll arrive at a search page with a banner, and a carefully selected number of items, taking them one step closer to a purchase, and providing them with a relevant landing page that corresponds with your email marketing content.

Source_Capture

Make sure you populate your landing pages with the products, promotions, and categories that perform best according to your site search data. The best part about all of this? Your targeted landing pages are even more effective because you’re using your site search keywords, which is the language your customers use to describe these products. You can also use these landing pages in your PPC Campaigns to raise your Google Ad score, and increase the efficiency of your marketing spend.

Targeted landing pages paired with targeted messaging creates a potent sales pitch. These search-based landing pages lead customers closer to a sale than traditional landing pages because they use familiar terminology and display only the products and offerings that visitors are interested in.

Targeting and personalization is critical to effective email marketing, and shouldn’t be overlooked in this process. Scott Langdon, managing partner of HigherVisibility, told us that one of the biggest problems he sees is a client ignoring different audiences: “We see clients come through with great ideas for excellent and engaging content for their email marketing campaigns, but oftentimes they forget the importance of making that content targeted. The more personalized you can make your content; the more likely someone will convert. You want them to feel like you’re talking to them directly, with relevant information, as opposed to just being another email on a list of addresses.”

Going Forward – Did Any of That Pay Off?

We’re not interested in guessing the success of campaigns. How do we incorporate solid data and analytics to guage whether or not the merchandising was worth the effort? Through a combination of our detailed site search analytics and your eCommerce Google Analytics, we can determine the impact that your targeted landing page efforts had on our bottom line.

Have you used custom landing pages before? Do you want some tips on how to run your own landing page email campaign? We’d love to hear your thoughts, and discuss ways to enhance your marketing efforts through Nextopia’s merchandising dashboard. Interact with us on Twitter at @Nextopia, or call one of our Search Experts at 800-360-2191 to learn more about how site search data and merchandising can improve your email marketing campaigns.

Note: Photo credit for the header image.

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