The Essential Guide to Increasing First-Time Purchasers

Have you hit a wall with your database?

Do you have thousands of subscribers sitting there? But not purchasing from your brand?

It’s a common, and frustrating, challenge.

Many brands hope that once a potential buyer signs up to their email communications or engages with their website, their first purchase will be the natural next step.

Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case.

Instead, brands need to continue the hard work. Moving their potential buyers from research and consideration stages, all the way through to purchase.

Fortunately, by embracing personalisation, automation, and data, marketers can achieve just this.

In this essential guide, we cover the best strategies and tactics to help marketers increase first-time purchasers, and enjoy an expanding customer base.

Because better starts here.

Dynamic content

Personalisation has long been a successful strategy for both email and websites.

In fact, 74% of marketers say targeted personalisation increases consumer engagement rates. Perfect for encouraging that first purchase.

But personalisation has come a long way since adding a first name to the email subject line or copy.

Today, brands should focus on using dynamic content to automate the most up-to-date, highly personalised content on both their emails and websites.

Dynamic content enables brands to generate compelling emails and landing pages that are unique to the viewer and up to date from the moment the email is opened or the website is landed on.

This content is highly tailored to the individual by utilising the shopper’s behaviour, preferences, demographics, and whatever information is accessible. Resulting in a highly personalised experience.

Real-time banners

Perfect for grabbing attention on a brand’s website or email. Real-time banners showcase tailored messages and offers that are most relevant to the buyer. This could include product promotion in the categories most browsed. Or a tailored discount for a product that the buyer has had their eye on.

For instance, if a shopper is visiting a clothes website, but only views the women’s section. The homepage banner could be personalised to display women’s options, as opposed to men’s.

Product recommendations

80% of consumers like to receive product recommendation emails based on past purchases. But this tactic is also great to encourage shoppers to finally make their first purchase.

Based on browse behaviour, product recommendations can showcase products based on the items and pages the shopper has viewed the most.

This could include a reminder of the product they were viewing, related and add-on products, or even alternative products that may be more tempting to them.

Pricing and availability

Of course, if you’re recommending products to shoppers. You want to give them as much up-to-date, relevant information as immediately as possible.

Because nothing puts buyers off more than being ready to purchase, just to discover the price has increased, or the product has sold out.

By using product data feeds, brands can include real-time pricing and availability on their products. This information is updated automatically every time a shopper opens an email or refreshes a landing page. Meaning they always have access to the latest information.

This tactic is also great to add urgency to the buying process. If a shopper can see that their chosen product is selling out fast, they are more inclined to make that first purchase, instead of delaying.

Countdown timers

Also adding a sense of urgency are countdown timers.

These are a fun and eye-catching use of dynamic content. And are perfect to promote sales and limited-time offers.

Like all other dynamic content, countdown timers refresh every time the shopper opens their email or refreshes a landing page. So they will always be viewing the correct amount of time before the sale or offer is over.

As well as adding a sense of urgency to make a purchase, countdown timers are incredibly visual, which helps to improve engagement.

Behavioural targeting

Did you know that 63% of consumers won’t buy from brands that use poor personalisation tactics?

It’s 2021. Time to stop sending the same message to every recipient.

With the use of behavioural targeting, brands are not only able to target specific audiences with specific messages. They can target specific individuals too.

Delivering one-to-one personalised experiences with the use of data. And offering a customer experience that first-time purchasers won’t be able to resist.

Behavioural segmentation

Let’s begin with behavioural segmentation.

This process enables brands to build granular segments of their audience based on factors such as demographics, behaviour, or stage in the buying cycle.

These segments can then be used to send specific content tailored to their needs.

For instance, brands could set up a segment for recipients who frequently browse a specific range, but are yet to make their first purchase. They can send these recipients offers and discounts on their frequently browsed ranges, to give them that extra nudge to purchase.


Back in stock emails

Let’s take this process a step further by targeting emails based on recipients’ specific activity.

For instance, back in stock emails can utilise browsing behaviour to promote specific products.

If a shopper has regularly visited an item, but hasn’t made a purchase because it’s been out of stock. Notify them when this product is back in stock to encourage them to snap it up quickly.

Price drop alerts

Alternatively, maybe a shopper has been browsing an item which has recently been reduced in price. So, let them know about this change with price drop alerts.

A discount may be just what the shopper needed to convince themselves to purchase.

Basket abandonment

Or, maybe a shopper had almost finished their purchase by adding an item to their online shopping basket. But just didn’t make it to the final stage.

Remind shoppers of what they’re missing out on with abandoned basket emails. These should clearly promote the item they have left in their basket. And can include additional useful information to encourage them to purchase. Such as the price, user reviews, or even a discount especially for them.

After all, 54% of shoppers will purchase products left in their basket if they are offered at a lower price.

Social proof

Trust plays an important part in the buying decision.

A potential purchaser may love your products. But are unsure about you as a brand. What if the product is of low quality? What if the delivery is unreliable? Will I receive any post-purchase support?

All of these questions can be the difference between a purchase and an abandon.

Social proof is key to reassuring potential buyers. And can encompass reviews, ratings, social media images, and testimonials.

In fact, online reviews have been shown to impact 68% of purchasing decisions and 84% of people trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation.

Popularity messaging

If an item is popular, this suggests to shoppers that it’s worth the purchase.

Show potential customers if a product is selling fast by using real-time, behavioural data based on other customers.

This can be showcased in a number of creative ways. Such as ‘trending products’, sales counters, and ‘best sellers’.

Scarcity messaging

Alternatively, tap into shoppers’ FOMO by letting them know that the item they are browsing has nearly sold out.

By utilising stock data, brands can highlight how many units are left for a particular product, which is very powerful if the product is running out.

As mentioned previously, urgency is a great tactic to encourage shoppers to make that first purchase. And showing scarcity is the perfect way to achieve this.

Reviews and ratings

93% of consumers read online reviews before buying a product.

If your brand encourages reviews and ratings for your products, then shout about them. This will offer further reassurance that the shopper can trust the item they’re thinking about purchasing.

Reviews and ratings can be dynamically populated in both emails and on websites. And work extremely well in abandoned basket and browse campaigns.

Live social feeds

But consumers no longer simply turn to review and ratings websites for reassurance. They also turn to social media.

That’s because they can see your products being used and enjoyed by real people they can trust. It can also help them to see your products in action. Which can be much more useful than browsing static images.

Live social feeds can be pulled into emails and on landing pages. Brands can highlight their own social feed, which is great if the effort is put into curation and subtle product promotion.

Alternatively, brands can pull through specific hashtags. This is a great way to showcase user-generated content. And show off how a product is being used by happy customers.

Lifecycle automation

Not all potential customers are at the same stage in their lifecycle.

Some may have only just come across your brand. Whereas others may be long-term followers that are on the cusp of purchasing.

Therefore, each potential customer should be treated differently. And engaged with accordingly.

Automation can help streamline this otherwise complicated process, by sending out campaigns and emails based on the lifecycle stage of the potential customer.

This helps to keep recipients engaged. And moves them along the buying cycle to finally purchasing.

Welcome series

When a new buyer signs up to your newsletter or email communications, they are highly engaged with you.

So now is the time to send them a warm welcome, and keep your brand at the forefront of their minds.

Welcome series do exactly this.

This could be a singular email, thanking them for signing up to your emails, setting expectations for communications, and letting them know more about the brand.

Or, this can be spread over a series of emails. These could include a brand introduction, a showcasing of your most popular products, customer testimonials and reviews, and then a final nudge to get purchasing with a discount or offer.

Nurturing sequences

Once your potential buyer has been welcomed, it’s important to keep them engaged with your brand to encourage them to make a purchase.

Nurturing sequences are key to achieving this.

They can take the form of newsletters, product updates, round ups, or promotions. Or a mixture of all of the above.

The key is to keep a comfortable and consistent flow of emails landing in their inbox. Enough to keep them engaged, but not so much to annoy them.

To stop your recipients from getting bored, mix up your nurturing emails. A balance of product promotions, customer stories, and brand news is a great place to start.

Re-engagement campaigns

Despite your best efforts, sometimes potential customers just aren’t engaging with your emails.

This may not be because they don’t want to hear from you. Maybe they simply aren’t ready to make that first purchase.

Reignite the spark by sending them a re-engagement campaign. Aimed at encouraging them to check out your emails and visit your website once again. And hopefully to make their first purchase.

This could include an eye-catching subject line, to help them remember your brand exists. A preference centre, where they can manage their communication frequency if your emails aren’t quite hitting the spot, or a discount to entice them back to your website.

Are you struggling to convert first-time purchasers?

Then we can help.

At Pure360, we offer an all-in-one AI marketing platform alongside a Customer Success Team whose sole mission is to get you better results. So why not get in touch to find out how we can help you?

Become a better marketer

With our free learning resource! Sign up now for access to the UK's best strategy advice, industry innovations, best practice and tons of actionable insights. #betterstartshere