E-commerce isn’t exactly something new, but in 2020 everyone was forced to recognize its power with social distancing, lockdowns and a pandemic closing the doors of the traditional commerce. It doesn’t matter the size of the business, being online is a necessity and Omnisend is one of the tools to check out if you want to bring efficiency to your online store. Check out our conversation with Greg Zakowicz (Director of Content).
Please present Omnisend to our audience
We are an email and SMS marketing automation platform specifically built for e-commerce businesses. If you sell something online and you are direct to consumer, we probably meet your needs.
The platform is designed to make a marketer’s life simple. We look at how to make nimble teams increase their sales and decrease their workload.
We offer quick and easy, one-click e-commerce platform integrations, such as with WooCommerce, Shopify, Shopify Plus, BigCommerce, and Magento. We have prebuilt automation workflows that are visual and intuitive, which you can customize as needed, and offer easy email creation with a drop-and-drag message editor.
The whole idea is to get you up and running and executing your marketing programs in a very quick, efficient, scalable way while allowing you to get as sophisticated as you want with automation. We can go from the very simple user, from that email platform that is built for everyone, to the one tailored for e-commerce business.
Integration is very important, as is migration and easiness to use. Is Omnisend a friendly platform for non-developers and tech savvy people?
Absolutely! You do not need to know how to do an API integration or code an email. You can build an email with pretty much no experience using our drop and drag editor. The beauty here is that we can walk you through everything, even integration.
If you open a Shopify store, for example, it is literally a one-click integration. We also have a detailed knowledge base where you can do self-help service if you choose, as well as 24/7 support with live chat, so we can help answer any questions you may have.
There’s no question about the importance of e-commerce and we saw that even more in this year. Why should the owners of an e-commerce have to think about a platform like Omnisend?
The fact is, email continues to be one of the largest revenue drivers online for any retailer. e-commerce is accelerating due to COVID, email is a part of that, and it is not going anywhere: it is a revenue driver and a trusted channel, so consumers are continuing to opt into receiving brand emails.
We saw open rates and conversion rates for email and SMS skyrocket since the beginning of the stay at home order period. As everyone started turning online, Facebook and Instagram ads became a hot target. The cost of all those things is going up, but the cost of email and SMS stays the same, and you are marketing to a channel someone has opted into – I think it is a very important part.
We are not at the forefront of SMS anymore but in stage two of SMS from a marketing standpoint. SMS adoption has not only skyrocketed but conversion rates have skyrocketed along with that. With email and SMS they can be used as standalone channels or integrated with one another.
Card abandonment is a good example: sending an automated cart abandonment email costs $0.01 or a fraction of it. You are paying more than $0.01 to retarget a person on Google. We can send one or two email messages and automate an SMS message to people who have opted into that trusted channel. Since these are channels people have opted into, they are more receptive to the message.
We were already seeing this from our stat reports from the second and third quarter of 2020 that, as we were getting into the holidays, SMS were ramping up. We think SMS is going to be a huge differentiator this holiday season, especially with everyone turning online and the holiday season starting earlier.
Did you notice a spike in demand during the pandemic?
From a company standpoint, we saw an uptick. A lot of it was more so for those retailers who maybe were not selling online before. I wouldn’t say it is anything that we went from a 2 to a 10 on a scale. It was a gradual uptick.
How Omnisend helps with targeting, something very important in a wide-open ecosystem like the internet?
We do it in a lot of different ways. When we talk about targeting, of course, the terminology is always segmentation. It can be quite simple or quite complex, it’s kind of what you want to make of it.
Our segmentation tool is very robust, well-built, and established, so you can get as sophisticated as you want. From a realistic and scalable standpoint, we talk about small teams and maybe solopreneurs and smaller businesses, where you only one or two people running your marketing program and creating your emails.
Let’s say you are sending 5 times a week, it is just you running the show, and you want to segment with 5 different audiences. Now you’re talking about 25 different creative ideas that you have to come up with. Is that scalable? For some, probably not. For others, it might be. The trick is to do it smarter.
In Q2 this year, automated messages accounted for just under 2% of Omnisend sends. Yet, they drove 26% of the email conversions. In Q3, that number went to 32%. We are talking about driving revenue while you sleep.
I mention this because you can segment in the automation and it really provides you the ability to create one segmentation layer that runs in the background and you are not worried about the promotional campaigns as much, because you are augmenting that revenue from the automation side.
A quick example of what that might look like, using cart abandonment: we can put a node in the workflow that says ‘let’s check the cart value ’. Let’s say it is under $35 and you have a $35 shipping threshold in your site. You can deliver them a separate message than you would to a person that maybe has a $200 cart, because they probably have different reasons not to purchase. And now you can automate different streams of messages based on the customer.
These are different ways of targeting in a realistic and scalable way without having to compromise extra hours each week to craft highly-segmented emails.
What do you see as your audience? Is it more focused on big e-commerce companies or small ones can afford and use your software to full potential?
We have a diverse group of customers. We certainly have those ‘enterprise’ clients, but we tend to work with a lot of smaller and mid-size businesses to help them grow and accelerate their revenue.
Omnisend is equipped to handle the larger teams but for the most part we are helping small teams grow into something bigger.
To finish, why should I choose Omnisend instead of another tool?
I think a couple things differentiate us. The first one is the flexibility we have with channels. We offer email and SMS, which can work standalone or in conjunction one with another.
We also offer Google Ads sync and Facebook Ads sync in our platforms. If you think about a small company that might have one software doing this, another doing that, and something in the middle bringing the data together, to bring all under one roof reduces the costs of paying for other services and gathers all data in one place. This allows you to use the data in a more holistic manner.
To compare to some of our competitors: we scale affordably. Our scale does not increase exponentially as your business grows. You don’t have to move and take on that cost on a later date. One-click integrations with the major e-commerce platforms is also not to be understated: it is a huge thing being able to port that data back and forth next to real-time.
And then, we are just awesome people, if I may say so. We are friendly, we view customers as partners of ours, we sincerely want them to succeed, we have customer support managers that help advise customers on how to improve their marketing programs, and offer 24/7 support. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.