E-mails help drive retail choices, great way to inform customers about new products: study

Posted by Isobel Drake on 25th February 2009

Permission-based email makes shoppers more likely to do business with a retailer, in addition to generating a more favourable opinion of the retailer and even a stronger sense of loyalty to the retailer’s brand in around 50 per cent of cases, according to the latest research from American-based Epsilon.

“While email marketing programs have become standard in the retail industry, measuring the impact of email communications on offline sales and the lasting impressions of brands is not common,” Kevin Mabley, Senior Vice President of Epsilon Strategic Services, noted. “The research we conducted expands beyond just online behaviour and measurable activities and demonstrates the offline implications and branding ‘halo’ effect of email marketing.”

The Epsilon survey of consumers produced the following results:

* 56% of recipients of permission-based email from retail companies said they are more likely to make purchases from the sending retailers;
* 52% said they have a more favourable opinion of the retail companies that send them email because of the communications they receive;
* 48% feel more loyal toward the retailers and their products as a result of receiving permission-based emails.

In another compelling result from the survey research, 87% of respondents who receive permission-based email from retail companies said email is a great way to learn about new products, while 63% of those who receive permission-based email from retail companies suggested they want to receive personalised content based on their website activity and past purchases instead of just generic mail-outs.

As a result of receiving emails from retailers:

* 88% download/print a coupon;
* 79% click a link in an email to learn more;
* 75% purchase a product online;
* 69% research retail locations that carry a product;
* 67% purchase a product offline;
* 60% try a new product for the first time;
* 55% share a coupon or forward the email;
* 33% type/copy the URL into their browser.