Case study

Automatic ‘back in stock’ notifications through connection to online shop and ERP system

Fashion firm s.Oliver offers visitors to its online shop an attractive service when items are sold out: Customers can choose to be notified by email when the desired item is back in stock. Messages are sent automatically thanks to Inxmail Commerce. Recipient activity shows that the service goes down well with customers. Potential customers are connected to the brand and conversions in the shop increase.

Practical example

Requirements

A streamlined solution for ‘item back in stock’ messages

Every online shopper has been there: After a thorough search they finally find the product they want in the online shop, but unfortunately it is already sold out. This is not just an annoyance for customers; for shop operators like s.Oliver it is a major challenge too. This is because the same product can often be found just a click away on their competitors’ sites. At the same time, s.Oliver cannot rule out the possibility that certain sizes and items might be unavailable from time to time.

The fashion firm wanted to connect potential customers to the shop, rather than risk losing them. That’s why s.Oliver needed a streamlined, low-maintenance solution for automatically sending email notifications when items were back in stock. Professional configuration options, reliable and timely delivery and measurability were at the top of their requirements list.

Implementation

Reserve sold-out items at the click of a mouse

As soon as an item sells out in the s.Oliver online shop, the ‘remind when available’ button appears automatically in place of the shopping cart button. When the customer clicks it, a short form comes up. The customer fills in their email address and, if they wish, their name. They can choose to subscribe to s.Oliver’s newsletter at the same time.

As soon as the desired item becomes available for delivery again, the customer automatically receives a visually appealing email showing the product image and relevant details. The best bit is that the email is designed to mimic the shop layout, and the ‘buy now’ button leads directly to the product page. This personalised one-to-one communication allows the fashion company to react immediately to customer demand. That increases the likelihood of a sale and connects visitors to the shop with the s.Oliver brand.

Solution

A professional solution for transaction and one-to-one emails

Inxmail Commerce, the specialist solution for transaction and other types of one-to-one emails, allows emails to be sent automatically when items are back in stock. In order for this to work, Inxmail Commerce needs to be seamlessly integrated into both the online shop and the ERP system. As soon as the desired product is available again, the automatic email is triggered by the source systems.

Once the system has been set up, s.Oliver’s eCommerce team can easily implement, configure and customise it – with no need for any support from the IT department. Inxmail Commerce also ensures the highest possible level of message deliverability, in addition to providing comprehensive reporting, bounce management and email templates for optimised display on all end devices.

Results

Satisfied customers and better conversion

Individually tailored notifications of the availability of the desired item target the recipient’s attention precisely. Because this one-to-one message is expected, it is opened and clicked much more frequently than a standard newsletter.

The figures for s.Oliver’s mailings are further proof of this: On average, 87 per cent of customers reached open the notification, and around 61 per cent click a link. Customer performance in the shop is also significantly better than with s.Oliver’s standard newsletters.

The company plans to increase the potential of these messages by integrating recommendations. This will provide the customer with product suggestions matching the product he/she reserved.

Benefits at a glance

  • Automatic dispatch of emails for products that are back in stock that are much more frequently opened and clicked than regular newsletters
  • The email notifications can be simply and independently implemented by the eCommerce team without IT support
  • High and fast deliverability of one-to-one emails along with reliable bounce management
  • Personalised one-to-one communication boosts brand relevance and increases customer satisfaction

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