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June 19, 2020

ECOMMERCE

Walmart teams up with Shopify to grow its eCommerce marketplace

In an attempt to compete with Amazon in the eCommerce space, Walmart’s online marketplace has joined forces with a new partner: Shopify.

Some 1,200 companies that already use Shopify’s tech to sell online will now be able to sell on Walmart’s U.S. marketplace by the end of the year, the companies announced on June 15.

The partnership comes at a time when Walmart’s marketplace, which first opened in 2009, is finally gaining momentum. But it needs to increase the number of products available for sale, which is currently around 75 million. During the first quarter, the growth of the marketplace outpaced Walmart’s overall 74% increase in U.S. online sales – driven by a pandemic-fueled surge.

“This integration will allow approved Shopify sellers to seamlessly list their items on Walmart.com, which gives Walmart customers access to a broader assortment,” said Jeff Clementz, vice president of Walmart Marketplace.

With the launch of the Shopify integration, Walmart’s focus will be on the brands that can meet its shoppers’ needs. Walmart says it will look for U.S.-based small and medium-sized businesses that have a good track record in terms of customer service and an assortment that complements their own.

Shopify sellers are invited to install the Walmart Marketplace app from Shopify’s App Store and determine their eligibility. If approved, the sellers can then add an unlimited number of products to Walmart Marketplace, while making changes to product images and inventory within Shopify. Those changes will immediately and automatically be reflected on Walmart’s site, the retailer says.

This sort of integration could be the first step in a potential Shopify acquisition down the road. But in the near-term, it turns Shopify’s seller network from one that rivals Walmart’s Marketplace into one that actually fuels it. Over time, this will boost Walmart, as it will benefit not only from marketplace listing fees but also from the increased traffic and sales that marketplace items will bring.

To learn more, read Walmart’s blog post here. Shopify merchants in the U.S. can apply to join the Walmart sales channel here.

EMAIL MARKETING BASICS

Are you an email marketing newbie?

Then this is for you!

It should come as no surprise that email marketing is a major part of every entrepreneur’s plan for their business. But we have some advice for you – don’t make the same mistake as the majority of newcomers by choosing Outlook or Gmail for your email campaigns.

While it can be tempting to fall back on familiar things or use platforms that are free of charge, email marketing should not be taken lightly. Email marketing is an essential tool in your pursuit of driving traffic, boosting conversions, and generating leads. So, it deserves serious consideration and a platform with impressive capabilities. 

In its recent guide, Designmodo points out the limitations, advantages, and disadvantages of using personal accounts, like Outlook and Gmail, for email campaigns. It also outlines the benefits of using custom designs with personalized content.

In conclusion: Even though a professional email marketing service will cost you some money, it’s a worthwhile investment. Using a professional service will help you to protect your reputation, develop trust with your subscribers, build a healthy contact list, and strengthen your brand. Of course, one of the biggest benefits of an email marketing service is more traffic and higher revenue. So, if you’re thinking about using your personal account to send promotional emails, think twice. 

Outlook’s niche is the office environment. As for Gmail and other personal accounts, although they might be sufficient for handling email newsletters, they come with numerous limitations. As a result, running email marketing campaigns through a personal account tends to be a waste of precious time.

Take a look at the full article on Desginmodo’s website.

REPORT

Proven strategies and missed opportunities

SparkPost recently published the results of a consumer survey co-developed with the survey software company, SurveyMonkey. The survey captures how consumers feel about marketing communications from their favorite retail brands. It also offers insights into which marketing activities promote consumer engagement and digital sales, as well as what mistakes brands are making. 

The survey analyzed data from 1,124 consumer research responses and measured it against data from SparkPost’s consumer panel of 1.5 million consumer recipients. The survey results highlight consumer preferences as they compare to their behavior, and outlines missed retail marketing opportunities, along with recommendations for tactics to boost engagement, customer satisfaction, and stronger brand-customer relationships.

Data from the survey shows the need for brands to take regular stock of their communications and measure resonance and reaction and illustrates the importance of executing campaigns aligned with consumer expectations. 

The following three points also emerged as key trends:

  • Content is important but context rules
  • Retailers may be missing the boat for post-purchase opportunities
  • Surprisingly, consumers report that email might influence their purchases, but it doesn’t drive them. However, the research shows that’s far from the truth

For additional analysis of the survey and email data, visit SparkPost’s blog. It’s a good resource if you want to learn more email marketing best practices, comparative data for brand strategy, and consumer behavior and response.

Also, visit SurveyMonkey’s blog for an in-depth look at what a top retailer is doing to generate incredible email communication success on a tactical level, in addition to notable tips on leveraging surveys to deliver better brand experiences.

DATA-DRIVEN MARKETING

A brave new world free of third-party cookies

One of the more predictable trends in digital marketing over the past few years has been the elimination of third-party cookies.

Despite Apple (Safari) and Mozilla (Firefox) having already blocked third-party cookies, it was Google’s announcement earlier this year that marked a major milestone and put marketers in hot water. We previously discussed this in our very first edition of Essence of Email Weekly.

With its dominant market share, Google’s decision is set to change the face of online advertising. Brands, agencies, and martech vendors have been scrambling to figure out how to adapt as a result.

The impact of removing third-party cookies could be remarkable. Eliminating vast pools of third-party data means there’ll be a limited number of platforms where advertising data can be combined, making tech giants even more powerful. 

However, where one door closes, another door opens. By decreasing their dependence on third-party cookies, marketers will have to create their first-party data channels, such as email marketing, work harder for them. It may be another two years before we wave goodbye to third-party cookies for good, but in the meantime, there is a real opportunity for marketers to up their game and get ahead of the curve by enhancing their email marketing programs.

Of all the components of the marketing mix, email marketing is perhaps the one that’s come along furthest. Email has evolved into a fast, cost-effective, and highly responsive tool for marketing, sales, and customer relationship teams. 

Now is the time to emphasize that retention is the new acquisition because companies that don’t pay attention will find themselves out in the cold this year.

Take a look at the full article.

EMAIL DESIGN INSPO

Strong visuals and direct copy

Bright, fresh, and summery – this email from Thumbtack is on-point for the season. We love the strong visuals and direct copy. Combined, they make a powerful impact.

This email uses bold headings and concise copy, making it easy to navigate. Each CTA is unique and clever, encouraging readers to click through. We’re impressed — make sure to check it out on Really Good Emails!

EMAIL NEWS. AS IT HAPPENS.

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