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Grow Your Online Store With The Top 5 Referral Emails Practices (With Examples)

As an eCommerce business, you probably already have a referral program, but how are you letting customers know about it? Is it on your website? Do you include it in your order confirmation emails? Are you posting it on social media? Or are you just shouting from a rooftop and hoping customers hear you? 

While all that might be effective (except the last one, get off the roof!), referral emails can give you better results. A referral email can help you educate and remind your customers about how both of you can benefit from referral programs. 

By the end of this blog, you will be able to send perfect referral emails and double your customers!

Table of Contents

  1. Highlight the benefits 
  2. Personalize the email
  3. Focus on timing 
  4. Choose the right advocates 
  5. Follow up

What are Referral Emails?

A referral email is an eCommerce email used to inform and remind existing customers about referral programs. In order to give them an extra push to refer your online store to family and friends. 

Basically, a referral email is sent to encourage customers to refer people they know, in order to get you extra sales and get them a voucher, gift, or any exclusive deal. It's a win-win situation! 

This combines word-of-mouth and email marketing together, giving you the best of both techniques and outstanding results! Speaking of results, let’s take a look at the benefits of sending referral emails.

Why Should You Send Referral Emails?

referral emails for Ecommerce

Sending the perfect referral email is no easy task but it is definitely an essential one! If you are wondering why then the next part is for you! Here are the top reasons why a referral email campaign can help you double customers and take your eCommerce business to the next level. 

A referral email campaign can help you in:

Now that you know what is a referral email and why should you be sending it, are you ready to learn how to send the best referral email campaign? 

5 Practices to Send the Perfect Referral Email (With Examples)

There is no one way to send the perfect referral email, but these practices can drastically improve your campaigns and get you the best results! 

1- Highlight the benefits

If you are asking customers for a favor on itself, you should consider yourself lucky if 1% do it or even reply to you. What we mean here is that believing in the good of people will get you nowhere in the eCommerce industry. 

When sending a referral email you have to ensure that customers know what they will gain. Don’t make it too transactional (if we get this, you get this) but entice them with what you are offering as a reward. 

A real-life example is the referral email sent by the online marketplace for apparel, Italic. The email is short and to the point, and most importantly, it focuses on the value it’s offering to both the original customer and the referred customer. 

Referral Email example Italic

2- Personalize the email 

Referral emails like most other email types can benefit greatly from personalization. To personalize a referral email, you can start with the basics like name and some personalized product recommendations. 

To take to it the next level, you can add some personal information, including past orders, their loyalty program progress, or just some engaging content. 

A great example of that is BigDogCo’s email which maps out the journey of the customer with them. BidDogCo took it even a step further and offered a gift before asking the customer to refer its store. 

referral emails example

Discover How To Skyrocket Your eCommerce Sales With Email Personalization

3- Focus on timing 

Before sending a referral email, you have to ask yourself, is this the right time? 

If you want to send a good referral email that gets you new customers, you have to know that timing is key. The best times to ask for referrals are:

  • After a customer makes an order (it could be the same as the order confirmation email).
  • When a customer receives their order.
  • Following a certain amount of orders (this is a great technique if you have automated workflows, for instance, when a customer is done with their 10th order, an automated mail should be sent).
  • On certain days of the week that your customers are most active (for example if you target young professionals then a Monday morning email is your best choice).

In the following example, Riff Raff & Co combines their order confirmation email with their referral email. By that, they are hitting two birds with one stone, as this is an email guaranteed to be read, and people at that point are excited about their order and probably in love with your brand! 

Riff Raff & Co refferal email

4- Choose the right advocates 

In an ideal world, every customer is loyal and refers your online store to all their friends but eCommerce is no ideal world. 

It won’t hurt to send referral emails to all your customers but by choosing the right advocates you may save some time and effort. Who’s the right advocate? This varies from one eCommerce business to the other, but in general, the right advocates are your most loyal customers. 

You can identify them from their number of orders, frequency of orders, and reviews. After you identify the best advocates, send them personalized referral emails that get them to bring more people in! 

In the next example, Youfoodz sends a referral email with a fun and friendly tone, asking loyal customers to refer their friends. The email also highlights the benefit the customer will get when someone uses their referral code. 

Youfoodz refferal email example

5- Follow up

A customer referred your online store and their friend ordered? That’s great, but now what? Should you just send them their reward? Of course not; now you should follow up! 

The best follow-up referral email you can send should start with showing gratitude, don’t go overboard. Just a simple thank you is fine. Then you can follow that with their progress (when will they receive their reward or if they still need to do something else). Finally, you should end it on a high note, maybe with another thank you or any fun elements. 

In this example, Massdrop started the email with their own fun way of showing gratitude (it’s important to stay true to your brand in all your emails) then they highlighted what’s gonna happen next. 

Referral email example s

Bottom Line

In conclusion, referral emails can help you gain new customers, increase sales, and grow your online store in general. If you need a helping hand in personalizing, automating, and sending the perfect referral email, ConvertedIn got your back! 

Book a demo now and take your eCommerce business to the next level!