How to set up follow up emails in Magento using customer segments

Small e-commerce business is always about low-budget solutions. Indeed, unlike huge corporations, you can’t spend money without knowing for sure whether it is going to work, or not. Small e-stores with tight budgets often reward points to their Magento 2 customers to secure retention. This solution is efficient, yet not the only one.

Of course you know what shipping and other follow up emails and customer segmentation are. Today we will tell you more about combining these two marketing spheres and how you can apply it for low-budget marketing of your online store. Plus, we will give you a few tips on implementing this on Magento.

Why even segment?

According to MailChimp, the global results across all measured segmented campaigns are rather impressive:

Results for email segmentation campaigns

In other words: personification works! Just imagine what it could do with your conversion rates.

Why use automatic follow ups?

Rule number one: automate everything you can automate without loss of quality.

Use Magento 2 marketing automation. Set your segmentation and follow up based on it just once, and it will be working until you decide to change anything or improve performance. It saves a lot of time and keeps you head free for other tasks, and most of the e-commerce platforms or tools offer this feature, including Magento extensions.

Rule number two: you don’t have to use all the combinations we are suggesting in this article!

The average number of messages per client is usually no more than 3 for each month. Do not attempt to load customers’ inboxes with emails, even if they are highly targeted. Overpromotion will scare the shoppers off. Choose several campaigns and measure their activities, you can always stop the campaign or start a new one if you see the need by your magento marketing automation performance.

To set the following segmented follow-ups, you’ll need these Magento extensions:

 Make Magento SMTP setup easy with our extension.

Customer winback email

Aim: to increase percentage of repeat purchases

Segment: loyal clients, say, who bought from you more than 2 times

1. Define the time period you’re going to send emails after. To do that, go to Frequency and Recency report in Google Analytics, Days Since Last Session Tab. This report will help you in understanding what average period of time is needed for the visitor to return.

Here’s the example from a website selling illustration workshops. We can see that the biggest number of session repeats after 8-30 days. We’ll start with that!

Days since last session

2. Go to your Magento store, create a customer segment: total number of orders > 2, days from the last visit = the time you came up with in point 1. I went with 15 days, but you can also test the time frame and find out which one from the suggested range works better.

Creating segments for loyal customers

3. Now go to Follow Up Email and set the campaign, choose Order Completed as a starting event. Don’t forget to choose your newly created segment, choose the template that you want to send, plus set the time period after which you want to send the emails.

Loyal customers follow up settings

Loyal customer follow up settings 2

What to send?

Send new arrivals and popular items. You may include a coupon to appreciate the loyalty of your customers.

Customer winback email 2

Aim: to turn customers into loyal ones

Segment: customers that made only one purchase

1. Create a segment the same as you created it for the first email, but set the purchase number to 1.

Email segmentation to return customers

2. Configure Follow Up Email the same as in the previous campaign.

What to send?
  • New arrivals and popular items
  • A coupon for the next purchase with limited time usage to create urgency
  • A coupon in return for feedback. Make sure that the user can reply to the letter and you will receive it (the sender address should be an existing one)

Here’s an example of a winback email from Sephora:

Product promotion

Aim: to raise sales of particular products

Segment: those who bought similar or complementary products

1. Create a segment and specify particular products or their groups that are similar to what you are going to promote.

For example, here are the settings for a segment of customers, that bought a single product (we mentioned the SKU) and any products from the ID=4 category. For example, if the customer bought a particular expensive camera or any camera from the ‘pro cameras’ category, you send him an email suggesting accessories for his camera.

Email segmentation for those who bought particular products

2. When setting your follow up email, choose the created segment, and the time we’ve figured out in the previous points.

What to send?

If you set the segment by only one product, send cross-sells or similar products if it is reasonable (people won’t by a second iPhone in a month, but they could buy more granola or perfume, because these are products that are spent faster, and you offer people to buy more when the product is over).

Here’s a good example of how your logic should work while creating product suggestions:

Product promotion 2

 Aim: to boost sales for holiday or occasion products

Segment: loyal customers (by number of orders or orders total), or to all customers by shipping address if the holiday is a local one

You can set several local holiday campaigns in advance so they go off without your participation and with no hush from your side.

Here’s an example for loyal customers that spent more than $500 at your store:

Follow up marketing email for holidays

What to send
  • Collections of products from holiday categories
  • Special coupon codes for loyal customers on holiday products
  • Notifications about upcoming special deals so the customers can prepare ahead

Wishlist promo

Aim: to boost sales or activate customers who registered and added the products to wishlist, but didn’t buy

Segment: registered customers who bought something and have this product in wishlist, or/and customers that added the product to wishlist but didn’t buy

If the user added the product to wishlist, it means that he’s highly interested in it. In that case it’s wise to stimulate him to buy this particular product than trying to offer him something else.

Here’s how to segment out the guys that have at least 1 completed order, haven’t visited the site for 2 weeks, and have at least one product in the wishlist, which is from certain category or has the certain SKU:

Wishlist follow up email

What to send?

Show the big picture of the product from the wishlist and incorporate a coupon code. The discount shouldn’t be very big. Remember that some savvy customers can delay a purchase if they know for sure they’ll get a coupon after adding the item to wishlist and not buying it. That’s where the bigger time period from the last visit helps a lot.

Thus, you remind the customer about the product he was interested in and push just a little bit with a discount.

Product or service feedback

Aim: to receive more reviews on the product page; to receive feedback about the shop service, such as product presentation, delivery, communication, prices, and such

Segment: no (of course, you can segment the recipients, but this follow up email can be sent to all the customers with completed orders)

In this case we will be working with Follow Up Email settings only.

When creating the rule, choose ‘Order completed’ as the triggering event.

Order completed

To ask for general feedback, send the email after 14 days after the purchase and provide a way to leave it: to fill in the form, to reply to this letter or to go on a separate website or platform where you might collect reviews.

To ask for feedback about particular products, you may place this code into your template to display the products that were bought with the latest order:















Encourage your buyers to leave feedback for the products. For more advanced reviews requests, please use Smart Review Reminder extension.

Here’s the example of an email asking for general feedback:

Viewed Product Promo

Aim: to engage doubtful customers and to raise the average check sum

Segment: registered/logged in customers, which viewed particular product(s)

Now, it’s too much to give a discount on a viewed product – however, we can do that with these modules. But here we offer a wiser solution.

Create a promotion with native Magento features. Here’s the offer: ‘you’ve recently viewed some products on our store. To say thank you for your interest, we give you a special offer: buy this product in an order over $200 and get 15% off!’ In fact, you can offer any promotion, but we’ll go through this case here.

1. Create a segment: these are customers who viewed particular products:

Viewed products promo

2. Go to Promotions – Shopping Cart Price Rules and create a condition with coupon:

Viewed products promo 2

Viewed products promo 3

3. Copy the No activity template from transactional emails, edit it and insert your previously created coupon: PROMO21 in our case.

4. Create the follow up rule by no activity event:

Viewed products Promo 4

And specify the no activity time in the general settings of Follow Up Email:

Viewed products promo 5

Choose the template you’ve created, go through all the settings (you already know them from the previous points). You’re all done!

Abandoned cart email

Aim: to engage customers who didn’t make the final decision to buy

Tool to use: Abandoned Cart Email, Advanced Customer Segments

What to send

Abandoned cart emails are art: you need to create an email that immediately makes your customer very eager to buy the product.

But we are talking of segments, too. Abandoned Cart Email extension has various rules for sending the emails, but all of them about the cart, or the products in cart:

Abandoned cart email rule


How to use segments for abandoned cart emails?

There are several ways to do that.

  • Send them to loyal customers only (set condition to segment out customers with more than 3 orders)
  • Send them for customers who spend a lot of money on your store (set condition to segment out customers who spent way more than the average sum on your store)
  • Use any segmentation rules to test the content of abandoned cart emails. Send various texts to various people to know which ones work better.

Birthday greeting

Aim: to gain loyalty. Let your customers know that you care about them. To raise sales

What to send

Send a warm birthday greeting and a small present for your customer. It could be a discount coupon for the next order, or a coupon that adds a small present to the next order. Make sure that you create the sense of urgency to make the coupon valid till a certain date.

Birthday follow up email

Follow up email with cross-sells

Aim: increase loyalty and raise sales

Segment: customers with completed orders, who bought particular products

Cross-selling emails might be tricky: they can be a failure in some spheres, and a success for others. The only way to know is to check!

The simplest way of sending an email with cross-sells is to use Follow Up Email – you just create a rule to send an email after the selected number of days pass, for ‘order completed’ event. The email will automatically suggest cross-sells into the letter. But please make sure that you’ve set up cross-sells for you products, otherwise customers may receive an email without products.

Here’s an example of an order:

Send cross-sells in Magento

And here’s the email I received – offering cross-sells that were previously configured for the roller suitcase:

cross-selling letter in Magento

The following transactional email templates must be chosen in Follow Up Email configuration settings to get such a result:

transactioal templaes for cross-sells in MagentoWhat to send?

In fact, the template already sends the necessary info. You can also add a coupon code to your email:

Discount for cross-sells

And you can use customer segmentation if you don’t want to send cross-selling emails to all your customers. For example, you could segment out only customers who bought products from certain category which promises to be successful (electronics is a good example, food is not). Or you can send it only to customers who bought products for which you have cross-sells configured (say, you don’t have any real cross-sells for 5 kg of granola – don’t send this follow up to customers who bought it).

To know more about cross-selling, please read our guide to cross-selling & upselling techniques


Aim: to activate the customer and to confirm the registration

Registration follow up email in Magento

What to send

Thank the user for registration. You can also tell a little bit about your store, inform about the deals that are available right now, or include a coupon for the first order (or a discount or free shipping).

Newsletter subscription

Aim: to confirm newsletter subscription and to inform the customer about what to expect

Newsletter subscription follow up email in Magento

What to send

Thank the user for subscribing to your email and explain which types of emails he or she is going to receive and how often. You can also insert a coupon here as a sign of gratitude.

General advice

  • Always test your emails before starting the campaign. Make sure that the customers will receive the right content with no glitches.
  • Make sure that each of your customers receives a limited number of emails – not more than 3-4 a month total. This number can be different for your niche, thanks to segmenting you can test how different amount of letters work for your customers.
  • Always incorporate Google Analytics tracking for all of your campaigns so you can track the results and make decisions based on real data. This is an absolute must!
  • Track your competitors. Subscribe to their newsletter, sometimes you even might order something from them or at least add products to wish list or put something to cart and abandon it to see what they are sending to their existing and future customers. This is not only to copy a successful strategy, but also to see someone’s mistakes and avoiding making them.
  • Be gentle with coupons. Amasty extensions let you insert coupons virtually everywhere, but it doesn’t mean that you should send coupons in every email. Too many coupons may force people to hunt for them or get used to discounts. What is more, customers can think that you’re tricking them with coupons and inflating the prices.