UK retailer newsletters failing to engage with consumers

Practicology has released the findings from six months of research into retailers’ email marketing campaigns. Conclusions? There’s substantial room for improvement.

One hundred well-known retailers were chosen, and of these Practicology was able to sign-up to receive email marketing from 91 of them without having to register for an account with the site. This is what the Practicology team discovered:

  • 15% never contacted Practicology once they had signed up for newsletters. These include Marks & Spencer, Majestic Wine, Bathstore, Halfords, Mothercare, Jigsaw and Tesco F+F
  • Only 67% sent a welcome email, but 63% sent the welcome email the same day as signing up
  • 7% email on a daily basis – Practicology only advises retailers to do this if they have genuine, engaging content to warrant such regular communication
  • 76% send emails with links to their social media accounts included
  • Only 48% have sent emails which are fully responsive (change design to suit the size of screen on which they are displayed). Retailers who have responsive/mobile websites but sent emails which were not responsive include: Argos, Sports Direct, Lakeland, Ikea, Fat Face, Boohoo, Paperchase, Karen Millen, Bonmarche and Boden
  • Only 47% acknowledged at least one of four key events that took place during the six months: Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Easter and Wimbledon.

Practicology’s Head of Data & Analytics Will Dymott said of the report’s findings: “It seems perverse that so many brands would ask for a customer’s email address and then do nothing with it. 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.”

He added: “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. If consumers are browsing your website and even transacting on smartphones, then they will be opening your emails on those devices too.”

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