Growing Your E-commerce Email List: 7 Actionable Tips

Email marketing is an old skill in the marketing playbook. It’s an easy way to target potential consumers and engage with your previous customers. However, the struggle comes in when you need to grow your email list. How do you built it?

7 ways to build an email marketing list

There’s many strategies for growing your email list for your e-commerce store. Before diving into growing your list, you’ll need to refresh yourself on some email marketing best practices. Unfortunately, a plain text email isn’t going to do much convincing for your business. Come up with some creative designs and work on creating copy that’s concise and intriguing. The better designed your emails are, the more likely you are to retain subscribers.

Another thing to keep in mind is that although you could pay to grow your list with any and every email subscriber, having a list that is smaller and more targeted to your audience is beneficial. You’ll be emailing subscribers that are engaged with your brand and have a higher chance of converting. As with the content of your email, the quality of your subscriber list is more important than the quantity of subscribers.

Now that we’ve got that out of the way, let’s get started on how to build your list.

Standard Opt-Ins

Your standard opt-ins are a great starting point for building your email subscriber list. Your intrigued subscribers will sign up with no prompting whatsoever. Have them prominent on your landing page, such as our G2sday Roundup site where it hits them straight away to sign up.

G2sday Roundup Newsletter sign up

Another great place to put them is in the footer of your site like Birdies does. It won’t take up too much space here and will provide another opportunity for your customers or potential consumers to sign up for information delivered to their inbox.  Have your marketing automation tool send an email to confirm subscriptions to ensure actual humans are signing up.

Birdie newsletter sign up in footer.

Pop-ups

Pop-ups on your page are a great way to capture emails. Your audience is already on your page, so a large pop-up encouraging  email signups can convert. Dolce and Gabbana have a pop-up that appears almost instantly as you visit their page. Their subscription form is to the point and asks information that can help them segment their email list to send more targeted emails.

Dolce & Gabanna Newsletter Pop-Up

Another simple type of pop-up is an exit intent. These will appear as a customer is going to exit your page and serve as a last resort effort to get signups. Your e-commerce platform may offer the opportunity to build exit intents as consumers are going to leave a page. 

Give an incentive

Using a lead magnet seems like a natural way to gather emails. You’re offering something up in exchange for a consumer’s email. It a surefire way to get emails, but you have to be able to offer something in return. That can be anything from a discount, free product, free shipping, and more. These lead magnets often come in the form of pop-ups or exit intents as a way to convert customers. Use an e-commerce analytics tool to check your KPIs and see what product pages this would be a good fit on. A great example to look at is Casper’s. Upon going to exit the page, a pop-up for $100 off a purchase of my mattress comes up. For such a large purchase, this discount seems great for the consumer and is probably not as harmful to the retailer since their average purchase is large.

Casper coupon pop-up

Landing page

Create a simple landing page for your customers to sign up. Give them the information about what they’ll receive in the email list and ask for their relevant information. H&M has a simple landing page in their help section. It gives readers information about what they’ll receive and customize what departments they’ll get emails from.

H&M Landing page

Gamify it

Adding a simple game or quiz to get consumer emails is an excellent way to build your list. Have your viewers take a quiz that curates your product for them and gives them a recommendation. However, the recommendation will live behind them providing their email. Although you will see a drop off in survey respondents, you’re likely to get emails of engaged potential clients. Afterall, they’ll have spent some time going through your survey, so they’ll want to see the results. Wine subscription box, Firstleaf, entices sign-ups by having a wine preference quiz and only releases results by subscribing to their emails.

Firstleaf wine survey

Add to wishlist & loyalty programs

An easy way to gate wishlists or loyalty programs is to require an email signup. Don’t lead with that email is required, but when someone clicks on add to wishlist, make them sign up in order to use the feature. Lulus does a great job of exhibiting this on their shopping pages.

Lulu's Loyalty sign up

Back in stock notifications

A final easy way to grab emails, though not the only last way, is to ask consumers to sign up for notifications when their favorite product comes back in stock. Offer them to sign up for all of your emails as well. They are already engaged enough to be interested in buying a product in the future, so this email signup isn’t too far of a stretch.

Anastasia Masters
Anastasia Masters is a Content Marketing Associate at G2. She graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in history. In her spare time, Anastasia enjoys eating her way through Chicago's different neighborhoods, planning her next trip, and binging a new show on Netflix. You can follow her on Twitter at @anastasia_mm0.