education - Nov 08, 2021

Email receipt that drives more sales? Here’s the secret!

Did you know that email receipt confirmations have the highest open rate of any type of email you’ll send to your customers?

That’s exactly why email receipts represent a great opportunity for growth hacking! Yep, you’ve read it right. An email receipt should not merely be used as a record of purchase. Each receipt you create represents an opportunity to drive future engagement and even procure another purchase!

The question is: what does the perfect email receipt look like?

Let us walk you through the exact steps to take!

What’s the goal of an email receipt?

To help put yourself in your customers’ shoes, first, let’s think through why we send receipts in the first place. This will help you decide how to emphasize the various pieces of information you need to include in your email receipt.

1. Confirm the payment

Customers are expecting their order, therefore, receiving an email receipt confirms their purchase, providing them with a sense of assurance.

2. Provide a record of the transaction

Email receipts are also serving as records of the transaction. For instance, in case of a dispute, customers will use the email receipt to prove their claims. Additionally, if a customer is a business, they will use the receipt to write off expenses or to keep a record of company expenses.

3. Offer valuable information and relevant promotions

Receipts are also a great opportunity to make a lasting impression on your customers and drive more sales. All you have to do is make specific actions related to the purchase convenient and provide your customers with valuable content.

What does the perfect email receipt look like?

Let’s dive in and discuss those key steps that will turn your email receipt into a growth hacking tool!

1. Provide a clear subject line

The subject line is the first thing your customers will see when your email receipt pops up in their inbox. So, it should be enticing, right?

Not exactly!

When it comes to promotional emails, it pays to play around with subject lines. However, that doesn’t apply to email receipts! It’s essential to be clear on what your email is about.

What to include?

You can add the name of the product or service your customer purchased, the cause she donated to, the date of the purchase, or the transaction amount.

Some examples:

  • Your purchase for $10.99
  • Your purchase of premium dog food
  • Your January 2021 receipt for $10.99

Don’t make the mistake of including your company name in the subject line! It’s totally redundant since the “from” slot will already signal the name of the sender to the recipient.

Take a look at Uber’s fun yet straightforward subject line copy:

Uber uses a fun yet straightforward email receipt subject line

2. Thank your customers

Believe us: a simple thank you can go a long way in building customer loyalty and thus, indirectly influencing repeat purchase.

That’s why you should never send an email receipt without saying thank you to your buyers – even if you already did so on your thank you page after payment!

How to express your gratitude?

You may choose to write a heartfelt message similar to what Abercrombie & Fitch opted for:

Always start your email receipt with a thank you note!

If your brand personality is rather easy-going & cheerful, you can also make the message brief and fun, just like Tarte™ did:

Your thank you message can be short and easy-going

3. Make every detail about the purchase crystal clear

Informing your customers how you billed them is a must in every email receipt! This way, you can save a lot of stress for your buyers which means, they will be more attentive to the rest of your email!

So make sure to include a hint of the billed debit or credit card (only the last few digits of the card number as per convention), the billing date, and the name on the card.

Additionally, if your company name is different on credit card statements, make sure to mention this to your customers.

Finally, don’t forget to indicate the name of the person who made the purchase. Why is this small detail important?

Frequently, email receipts are forwarded, and if people don’t recognize the charge and don’t know who to ask, it’s not uncommon for them to issue a chargeback.

So, your task is to make every detail about the purchase crystal clear for the recipient, just like Taco Bell did:

Your email receipt should include information on how you billed your customer.

4. Answer all questions on shipping

Customers usually skim the entire email receipt and would like to find shipping information first. Don’t fail on this simple step! Make sure to provide them with as much data as you have!

You may include:

  • the date of shipping;
  • the shipping method;
  • the estimated time of delivery;
  • a link to track their package.

Additionally, don’t forget to clarify who they can contact regarding shipping.

Not every piece of information is available at the time the receipt is generated?

Don’t panic!

You may handle missing data separately with shipping notifications, just like SoleStruck does:

Answer all questions on shipping in your email receipt.

The critical part of an email receipt confirmation is always the list of products or services the customer purchased. Why?

Buyers might want to check if everything they ordered was processed accordingly and there’s no more work to do on their side.

The question may arise: is including the item/service name, cost, and any relevant details (like size, color, duration, recurring status, etc.) sufficient?

Nope.

Additionally, you have to think about making related actions convenient for the buyer.

For instance, you should include relevant links to view additional details online, ask for help, or manage the order or payment.

A great example is how Amazon enables buyers to manage their orders with a single click:

Include relevant links in your email receipt to make related actions convenient for the buyer.

A highly effective way to deliver more value and increase your sales is to use the email receipt as an opportunity to upsell your customers on more products or services. Did they buy a printer? Link to ink cartridges! Did they order a wall lamp? Offer them pendant lights matching the style of their original purchase!

Look at how Crate & Barrel is on point with adding personalized recommendations into their receipt notifications:

Add personalized recommendations into your email receipt notifications. You can also link to relevant blog posts or videos in your email receipt acknowledgement to help customers get even more out of their purchase. For instance, if the recipient donated to your charity, you could include a link to a video about the beneficiaries of the donation. (Donations by the way… for tips & tricks on how to entice people to donate, make sure to read our article about designing the perfect donation page!)

7. Incentivize a repeat purchase

Another option to use your email receipt as a growth hacking tool is to offer coupons or discounts.

For instance, include a coupon for a percentage off your buyer’s next order or remind her about an upcoming sale!

Another smart way to boost conversions is to offer a coupon for the recipient to both use and share with a friend. To create a sense of urgency, you may leave the offer open for a very limited time.

Take a look at how Gilt uses its email receipt to put people into that “wanna shop” state of mind:

Incentivize repeat purchase by including coupons in your email receipt.

8. Invite buyers to your club

Besides receiving coupons, people also crave joining exclusive groups. Why not use your email receipt as an invitation?

To maximize conversions, make sure to focus on long-term benefits: what might get your shoppers interested? Furthermore, place your offer at the bottom (and not at the top) of your email receipt!

Take a look at how REI conveys a sense of exclusivity to its prospective members:

Use your email receipt to invite shoppers to your membership club.

9. Provide a referral bonus

Referral marketing strategy is a highly effective way to engage customers, drive advocacy, and growth.

Make sure to include a personalized message in your email receipt that incentivizes your customers to share their feedback with their friends.

Have a look at the way Tradesy uses a $10 referral to turn its buyers into salespeople:

Provide a referral bonus to your customers.

10. Ask for a review

If customers are satisfied with the whole buying experience and your email receipt is also on point, believe us, they’ll be more than happy to provide you with a positive review.

All you have to do is to encourage buyers to share their feedback on social media. Ask them to include photos of your products with a hashtag. This way, you can provide a form of proof that can lead directly to increased brand trust and sales among larger consumer audiences.

Later, you can even include these reviews in your email receipts to boost customer retention.

CineTech’s email receipt is the perfect example:

Ask for reviews and include them in your email receipt.

11. Spice up your copy

If we asked you to describe email receipts with one word, what would it be?

Boring, right?

Now then, let’s change that!

Instead of throwing in a bunch of words, you need to catch your readers’ attention. One way to do so is by showing a personal voice. How? Use conversational language as you would in an email to a friend!

Take some inspiration from this funny email receipt copy by Copywrong to Copywriter:

Spice up your email receipt copy by using conversational language.

Customize & send your email receipts with Stripe

Did you know that with the payment processing platform Stripe and the WP Full Stripe WordPress plugin, you can send customized email receipts and even reminders to your customers?

You can choose to send automated email receipts or prepare them manually. If you choose the automated way, you have to ensure that you have an email address associated with each customer, so Stripe can send email receipts after successful payments.

If you choose to prepare and send email receipts manually, go to the receipts history section of a given payment page on your Stripe Dashboard.

And here comes the best part: Stripe lets you customize your email receipt! You can select which language to use for receipts in your email receipt settings and upload a custom logo in the branding settings. Receipts also include any public information that you’ve specified in your account details, such as your phone number or website address. The preview of your changes can be seen in real time on your Dashboard.

To take even more weight off your shoulders, Stripe can also automatically email your customers when subscription charges fail.

Learn more about sending email receipts with Stripe by clicking here.

The perfect email receipt – Key takeaways

Email receipts have a much higher open rate than regular email marketing campaigns, yet they’re the most underutilized form of email marketing.

Remember: you have a customer who has already placed her trust in you. A well-designed email receipt is the perfect opportunity to strengthen your brand building efforts and to help drive future engagement and sales.

So, don’t forget to:

  • write a clear subject line
  • thank your customers;
  • make every detail clear about the purchase;
  • share details about shipping;
  • make related actions convenient;
  • offer valuable content;
  • entice people to buy again;
  • invite buyers to your club;
  • provide a referral bonus;
  • ask for reviews;
  • write a compelling copy; and
  • use a reliable platform to compose your email receipt.
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