If your customer retention game is strong, it’s time to turn on the taps and boost your customer acquisition engine.
In this article:
- How many new customers are you really acquiring?
- Finding the biggest growth opportunities in your sales funnel
- How much should I spend on marketing?
- How to boost sessions on your site
- How to convert sessions to purchases
How many new customers are you really acquiring?
The goal of customer acquisition is to...acquire new customers! Facebook Ads Manager might tell you that you achieved a 5x return on ad spend, but how can you tell if that spend was from new customers vs your customers making a repeat purchase?
Tracking New Customer Activity in your Peel Dashboard:
You can track the quantity of new customers who made a first purchase in your store as well as the total amount spent by that group in your Peel Dashboard.
New Customers Acquired:
The New Customers Acquired metric will tell you exactly how many new customers you acquired in a given time period as well as the trendline.
Total spend from New Customers
Use the Lifetime Revenue metric to see how much your new customers are spending. Since customers are cohorted by month they were acquired, you can see if newer groups of customers are spending more than olders ones.
Finding the biggest opportunities in your sales funnel
Spending more on Facebook ads is not always the answer. If you haven’t already, see our article on mapping your customer journey to track your store’s conversion rate and other vital ecommerce metrics. You may be surprised by where your opportunities are.
Before looking to boost traffic, answer these two questions:
- Is my store’s conversion rate (the rate that site visits, or sessions, become sales) above average for Shopify stores? If not, skip ahead to “boosting your conversion rate.”
- If your store’s conversion rate is in the top 20% of Shopify stores, move on to the “Boosting site traffic” section.
Boost your conversion rate
Turn anonymous site visitors into leads in your sales funnel
It’s very rare for a new site visitor to make a purchase on their first visit to your store. In fact, it sometimes takes more than 7 interactions with your brand before a purchase decision is made.
The problem: your store traffic is anonymous.
The key is to capture information about who is visiting your store so that you can add them to your sales funnel and drive them towards purchase. But how?
Strategy 1: Capture Emails
According to Privy, an email marketing platform for Shopify, each email address you collect is worth $15.98 in sales within the 90 days.
You worked hard to drive visitors to your site. Don’t lose them! Email automation tools like Klaviyo and Mailchimp all have email opt-in popups that allow you to collect email addresses from your site visitors. Offering a promotion code in exchange for an email address is a great way to kickstart your email collection process. Want to take it to the next level? Try gamifying your email collection with this spinning wheel from Privy. No coding or design skills necessary!
Strategy 2: Experiment with different landing pages
Most of your site visitors will leave your site without moving past the first page they see. There is a lot of opportunity to test how different landing pages encourage your visitors to view products, add them to cart, and ultimately convert into customers.
Pagefly: A page-builder that allows you to build landing pages, without code, and test how well they convert. You can also create multiple landing pages and have your ads point to specific landing pages.
Turn leads into serious potential customers
Once your site visitors are in your sales funnel, you can engage them with consultative advice, tailored recommendations, offers, and much more to nudge them towards adding products to their carts, checking out, and making a purchase.
Strategy 1: Let email automation do the work
Don’t leave potential customers up to their own devices. Give them a reason to come back and visit your store. Email is the best way to acquaint your customers with your brand. An automated email series that highlights your brand, the founders and their mission, the best selling products, reviews from customers, and of course, offers to click through and purchase can have an outsized impact on your conversion rate.
Need inspiration? Check out thousands of best-in-class emails at mailcharts.
Need a great email automation app that doesn’t require any code? Try Klaviyo.
Bonus: you can connect Klaviyo with your Peel dashboard and track how your shiny new email campaign is boosting your revenue!
Strategy 2: Use live-chat to engage potential customers when it matters most:
What better time to offer support to potential customers than when they are browsing your products? Use chatbots or live team-members to offer welcome messages, publish promotions, and answer questions about your products. Gorgias is a great tool that we have seen on many brands.
Strategy 3: SMS marketing
Email open rates are less than 20%. SMS open rates are greater than 98%.
Use SMS messages from real salespeople to convert abandoned carts, upsell one time buyers into subscribers, and much more. You can integrate Attentive with popular helpdesk platforms including Gorgias.
Turn serious potential customers into real customers
Strategy 1: Enable abandoned cart email flows
78% of Shopify Carts are never purchased! Potential customers who start a cart have demonstrated a very high intent to purchase from your store. Don’t let them slip away. Shopify helps you deliver a customized email to your customers with the products they left in their cart and a link to finish their purchase.
Tip: Make sure your abandoned cart email flow is enabled in your Shopify settings to re-engage those customers. In your Shopify Admin, click on “Settings” and then “Notifications” and look for “Abandoned Checkout.”
Want to take it to the next level? Try Recart
Recart is a Shopify app that enables communication with your customers through Facebook Messenger. Why Messenger? According to Recart, open rates on Facebook Messenger are much higher than email. With Recart, you can instantly and automatically deliver an Abandoned Cart message directly to their Facebook Messenger inbox.
Strategy 2: Boost the amount of visitors to your website
The Total Sessions metric in your Peel dashboard will tell you how many times visitors viewed your site.
The more instances that people visit your site (sessions), the greater pool of potential customers you have the opportunity to convert into paying customers.
How many sessions do I need?
- The short answer is “it depends.”
- The average store can convert approx 2% of store sessions into paying customers. If your objective is to acquire 200 new customers every month, and your overall conversion rate is 2%, you would need (200 customers / 2% conversion) which equals 10,000 sessions per month.
Where can these sessions come from?
There are many different ways potential customers can find your site, but let’s break it down into two main buckets:
- Paid Sources (Advertisements on Facebook, Google, and other sites)
- Direct Sources (Referrals, direct searches, clicks on your content)
To see the breakdown of your sessions in Peel, use the Total Sessions metric and segment by “channel group.”
Boosting Paid Traffic:
In your Peel Marketing Tab, the “Ad Clicks” metric will give you a good idea of how many sessions your paid advertisements (across all platforms) are generating for you.
Facebook and Google are the most popular ad platforms with the most popular reach. There are fantastic guides out there on how to build effective paid social ad campaigns - check out this course on Facebook marketing by Courseenvy. We’d like to use this article to focus on two topics:
- How much should you spend on ads?
- How can you measure performance of your ads from multiple platforms in one place?
Measuring your current ad spend:
With your Facebook and Google Ad accounts connected to Peel, you can track your total spend on ads in one place under the Marketing tab.
How should I spend on ads?
This is another “it depends” moment. This will vary by store and industry, but our preferred way is to compare your customer acquisition cost with your customer lifetime value.
Measuring Customer LTV
Knowing how much a customer is worth should guide how much you are willing to pay to acquire one. An acquisition cost greater than your average LTV puts you in a losing proposition with each new customer. You can find your average customer LTV in your Peel under “LTV By Customer”. Customers are more valuable the longer they stick around - make sure to check earlier cohorts to get a more accurate view of LTV.
Tip: Make sure your COGS are updated in Peel under the “Data” tab so that Customer LTV can included to give you the most accurate picture of profit. You always want to compare your acquisition to lifetime profit per customer, not just lifetime revenue.
Measuring Customer Acquisition Cost
With your spend aggregated, Peel will also tell you how much you are spending to acquire each new customer. This figure will fluctuate with changes in spend and ad / conversion performance.
The LYV / CAC Ratio
The LTV / CAC ratio should be your golden rule with ad spend. It measures the relationship between the lifetime value of a customer and the cost to acquire them. A ratio of 1 or higher means that a customer is profitable compared to acquisition cost. A ratio of 3 or higher (after 12 months) is a very healthy ratio to shoot for.
How do I use this ratio?
A low ratio (less than 1) means that you are either spending too much to acquire customers or your ads are not performing as efficiently as they could be. Focus on refining your ad strategy (and boosting LTV) to bring the ratio back in line.
A high ratio (more than 3) means you have room to boost your budget. Keep an eye on how the ratio changes with budget changes, making sure not to bring the ratio too close to 1.
Boost Direct Traffic From Direct Sources
Organic traffic, or traffic from users who search for your brand directly, is the usually the most efficient and cost effective way to drive conversions. The power and reach of your brand plays a large role in the volume of your direct traffic, but there are things that you can do to start growing your direct traffic source.
Send more emails
Whether it's helpful articles, promotional emails, new product announcements, or just checking in with customers, email is a highly effective way to drive site traffic. Our favourite brands send emails 1 - 2x per week, and tend to run promotions every 6 - 8 weeks.
We love Klaviyo, an email marketing platform that connects directly to Shopify, for email automation. You can easily set up campaigns that are sent to your customers based on shopify tags, when they made their last purchase, and many other dimensions.
Need some email inspiration? Check out mailcharts, a platform that aggregates the best emails sent from top brands around the world. There is no need to reinvent the wheel here. Sometimes it’s best to see what works and copy it!
TIP: Make sure to include a “Call to Action” button near the top of your email with a link back to your website.
Launch a referral program
Turn your customers into lead generation stars! Referrals offer a way for your best customers to earn rewards for referring their friends.
Check out Stamped.io: a referral and rewards program built integrate directly with your Shopify store.
Up your SEO game
When potential customers are searching for keywords related to your store, you’ll want to make sure your store appears near the top of the list. SEO is a complex field, which covers all sorts of areas such as how many other sites link to your store, relevant keywords within content (landing pages, product pages, blogs, etc), your site load speed, and much more.
Luckily, there are great Shopify apps that will automatically audit, make recommendations, and fix your store to make sure you rank as high as possible in Google searches.
Our pick: Plug In SEO Optimizer
Peel is a powerful tool to help you measure and plan your acquisition efforts. You can easily track marketing investment across all of your channels and track results, including an aggregated cost of acquisition figure. Easily calibrate a profitable marketing budget with Peels LTV / CAC ratio.
Boosting your store’s conversion rate
Improving your landing pages, effectively capturing emails, and using email automation are great places to start. Using tools such as Recart to convert your potential customers who abandon their carts and SMS to offer customized help and discounts are proven conversion boosters.
Boost your store’s traffic
Traffic can come from a mix of direct and paid sources. To boost your paid sources you’ll need to optimize your ads on platforms like Facebook and Google. For direct sources, email is your best friend. Make sure you leverage email automation and drive both potential and existing customers back to your store with compelling content and promotions.
Is your store running on Peel?
There are thousands of moving pieces in your Shopify store environment. An insights tool like Peel helps you understand your store’s data, generate the insights you need, and focus your attention on growing your business the right way.
Connect your Shopify store, Google Analytics, Facebook business manager, any other sources available to you to tell the full story.
Sign up for a free 15 day trial