How to Win at Post-Purchase Marketing

50% of consumers feel guilty about their purchases. That's where you come in with a well-constructed post-purchase messaging strategy. Learn the basics

Shane Barker
October 25 2018

As a seasoned marketer, you might already be aware that acquiring new customers can cost you 5X as much as retaining existing ones. However, did you also know that you have a 60-70% chance of selling to existing customers, and only a 5-20% chance of selling to new prospects?

If you’re able to nurture the relationships you have with your customers effectively, you can grow your revenue exponentially. However, this can only happen if your post-purchase messaging is able to help them rationalize their purchase decisions and reduce buyer’s remorse.

A study revealed that 50% of consumers feel guilty about their purchases often or sometimes. In fact, 44% of people in the US regret buying their homes or how they chose their homes.

Post-purchase marketing gives you the chance to curb such feelings, increase customer loyalty and retention, and create opportunities for repeat business. Let’s take a look at some surefire ways to nail your post-purchase marketing.

1. Provide Superior Customer Support

In 2017, 64% of customers in the US contacted customer service for some reason. This certainly suggests that customers have a need for guidance.

However, you can’t keep them happy by simply providing support. You need to ensure that you provide exceptional quality of support that makes them want to stick with you. In fact, 54% of customers stopped doing business with a company due to poor customer service.

So you need to train your support teams well enough so that they realize the importance of every interaction with a customer. This constitutes a major part of your post-purchase communication.

Even simple things like addressing a customer by name and having complete knowledge of their purchase history or previous service requests can make a huge difference. You can even create content using stories of the exceptional service that your support team has provided like Zappos does.

Image via Zappos.

2. Share Customized Product Recommendations

It’s no secret that personalization is the key to building lasting relationships with your customers. In fact, 59% of shoppers who have experienced it, believe that it has a great impact on their purchase decisions.

Sending personalized product recommendations is a great post-purchase marketing strategy. Based on the products your customer has bought, you can send emails that contain information on complementary or related products.

Jewelry brand, Heirlume, saw a 3% lift in CTR and a 9% lift in their open rates when they started to send personalized product recommendations to their customers.

3. Share “How to” Guides

If you try to solve a customer’s problem, you have a better chance of winning their loyalty. How-to guides are a great post-purchase marketing strategy that you can use to retain your customers and get them to buy more.

This can also be an effective way to introduce your customers to some of your other products. 96% of consumers want brands to help them discover new products to some extent.

Here’s an example of such an email from J.Crew in which they suggest a few outfit ideas that match their leopard print skirt.

Image via OptiMonk

Such emails are useful because they offer suggestions that can help save time and effort. They even offer an incentive to buy using an extra 40% discount.

4. Ask for Feedback or Reviews

Asking for feedback from your customers makes them feel valued and appreciated. It’s also a great way to gather insightful data that helps you improve your products and services.

Also, if you ask for feedback proactively, you might even avoid unfavorable situations from blowing out of proportion. For example, situations in which your customers are unhappy for some reason.

44% of unhappy customers take to social media to vent their frustrations. This can tarnish your image and credibility. Make sure that you ask for feedback as part of your post-purchase marketing strategy.

However, keep in mind that you must provide adequate time for them to use your product before you start asking for feedback. But if you wait too long, they might not remember the product well enough to share their opinion and experiences.

Best Buy sends their customers an email a few days after they’ve made a purchase. In the email, the brand asks their customers to submit their reviews. The copy is great because it appeals to the sentiments of customers and makes them feel valued.

Image via Zac Johnson

5. Highlight Your Returns and Refund Policy

We’ve already discussed how post-purchase marketing gives you a great opportunity to manage buyer’s remorse by helping them rationalize their purchase decisions. Highlighting your returns and refund policy is a great strategy to help them overcome any anxiety they might have after making a purchase.

If you offer refunds on products that customers return, make sure to send an email to let them know. Such emails need to also highlight the time limit by which they need to return the products to be eligible for a refund.

But for some customers, even the idea of arranging for a return can seem stressful. Include a  step-by-step approach for how they can return a product if they need to in the emails. Such assurances can go a long way to boost customer loyalty and retention.

Image via Pure360

6. Thank Your Customers

This one probably sounds like a no-brainer, but it’s one of the most effective post-purchase marketing strategies you can use. 90% of brands agree that engaging customers after they’ve made a purchase can increase revenue and site traffic.

A simple “thank you” note makes your customers feel valued and helps to humanize your brand. Here’s an excellent example of such a note from Abercrombie & Fitch.

Image via Smart Insights


However, it’s always best to combine it with an incentive that gets your customers to want to make another purchase. You can offer a unique discount code that’s valid for a limited time to encourage customers to make a purchase. Make sure to create a sense of urgency for the best results.

Here’s an example of such an email from Warby Parker. It’s a simple email that appeals to a customer’s emotions, but subtly solicits their feedback too. Also, as an incentive, it gives them a chance to win something if they can complete the survey before a specified date.


Image via Blue Stout

7. Send Reminders to Replenish

A great way to win at post-purchase marketing is to send your customers timely reminders about a product they’re likely to run out of soon.

This will require you to keep track of when they bought the product. Based on that, send them a reminder to replenish it a few days before the product is expected to run out.

This has two advantages. First, it allows you to provide a personalized experience that makes customers feel special. Second, the reminder helps you prevent them from buying a competitor’s product when they run out of yours.

Image via Smart Insights


Are You Ready to Win at Post-Purchase Marketing?

These are just a few of the many ways you can win at post-purchase marketing. You can come up with other unique ideas to win the hearts of your customers too.

Remember their birthdays or anniversaries and send them an exclusive offer on such occasions. Or leverage them to spread the word about you in their circles and provide an incentive for each new customer they refer. The possibilities are endless.

The most important thing that you need to remember is to aim at providing an exceptional experience to your customers at every touch point. And the key to do that is through personalization.

Do you know of any other effective post-purchase marketing strategies? Please share them in the comments below.

Shane Barker

Shane Barker is a digital marketing consultant for 15 years with an emphasis on Influencer Marketing in the last 5 years. He is specialized in sales funnels, targeted traffic and website conversions. He has consulted with Fortune 500 companies, Influencers with digital products, and a number of A-List celebrities.

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