Are You Following Up with Previous Customers?

Lose a customer? It happens. The question is, are they completely gone, or are they just dormant? In many cases, it’s relatively easy to win them back. Are you exploiting all the opportunities available? Take a chance and focus on customer recovery.

If you read our earlier eCommerce post, you know that for your online shop to be successful you need to focus on one thing. As they say, “the riches are in the niches.” That goes for customer recovery as well. If you focus on inactive customers, you’re going to hit gold. Why? The probability of selling to an existing customer is 60 – 70%. The probability of selling to a new prospect, however, is only 5-20% (1).

Losing a customer is part of the business – we get that – but you don’t need to be complacent. Besides, we don’t even agree that the customer is lost. They’re previous customers; not lost customers, right? Many of these customers can be won back again. In fact, many customers you want to win back are even positively surprised that you continue to care about them! They may also pass on their experiences to other people so that you get new customers without that expensive acquisition. 

Follow Up to Win Back Previous Customers

Winning back previous customers sounds perfect! How does it work?

Wait. There’s an elephant in the room. Did you see it? Why did your previous customer stop shopping in the first place? Did they leave something in the basket and then had to dash? Or, did they buy one item, and then are never to be seen again?

Customers leave for many reasons – it might not be you, but let’s err on the side of caution. Is your website optimized? Is there a short, clean, simple checkout process? Are you covering all the bases of return, payment, warranty, and price? Is the conversation getting boring? Perhaps you’re just not engaging enough. (2) We can’t all be Amazon.

Like any relationship, you should spend a little time thinking about why your customer might not be shopping with you anymore. With a little digging, you may find some interesting patterns which you can improve upon. Remember – it takes two to tango.

Talking is so important to any relationship — even with current and previous customers. After all of that hard work perfecting your website, probably 75% of the things your visitors put in their shopping carts will be left there. Customers who leave their shopping baskets without making a purchase, offer you numerous starting points for a cart abandonment email, too. 

As a rule, these are customers who are prepared to engage in dialog. They are often willing to reconsider their decision if they have a good reason for doing so. Giving them this reason — that’s the task of a well-thought-out marketing campaign.

Engage Previous Customers with the Perfect Email Campaign

Email marketing campaigns for eCommerce are not only about which products the customer left in the shopping cart or purchased six months ago. It can also be about upgrading or pairing their products. 

With an intelligent email marketing solution like, previous customers can be easily targeted. Once you know their online behavior, you can send them personalized offers. So, what does the ideal email look like?

Good email campaigns focus on the customer, not the sale. That’s why dialogue is largely used in these types of emails. Let’s start with the subject line. Think back on the last marketing email that you opened. What enticed you to do so? The subject line may have been the clincher. (3) 

Previous Customer Follow Up Tips

  • Convince through personalization. This way, the shopping cart abandoner feels directly addressed.
  • Don’t overload the mail with graphic elements – and focus on the idea of service.
  • Make them an offer they can’t refuse. Remind them of their original interest and offer alternative further product suggestions. And, by the way, people love discounts!
  • Don’t just email. Combine your email with other actions, like social media or Google Ads. Google has found that you can sell 50% more when you combine retargeting with other channels. (4)

Customers Are Busy — Woo Them

Don’t be disappointed if you don’t reconnect with all of your previous customers. People change. You’ll always have that one sale together. Seriously, people unsubscribe from email newsletters all of the time — including your previous customers. It doesn’t mean they don’t like your brand or products. They might have changed email addresses, switched jobs, or got overwhelmed homeschooling during COVID.

Fortunately, you can woo previous customers (yes, the pun is intended). How? How do you fix a broken relationship? Make contact. Ask them how they’re doing. Reach out. Sounds simple, right? However, today’s customers are busier than ever and more connected than ever. It also means they’re easily distracted — maybe by you. Get the right content to them at the right time and in the right place. 

So how about that email? You already have permission to contact them. It’s not attention-seeking; it’s good business. Plus they’ll be piqued with curiosity! 

While you have your previous customers’ attention, don’t complicate your checkout with features users don’t actually want. Offer rock-solid functionality using the most proven selling tools instead

Perfect. Standardizing eCommerce.

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