May 28, 2013

Using Vextras’ Postmaster Integration for Volusion Stores

Let’s say you own an online clothing store. When your customers check out, they’ll get a receipt from you, and that could be the end of the transaction. But wouldn’t it be cool to send them a follow-up email asking them about their purchase or offering them some sort of discount on a future purchase?

Our Connect Directory features several eCommerce integrations that, when paired with our enhanced autoresponder features, make this type of engagement with your customers easy. Chimpified and MageMonkey (among others) allow users to subscribe during the checkout process and take advantage of MailChimp’s eCommerce360 functionality. With the data these integrations pass to MailChimp, you can segment your subscribers (and trigger autoresponders) based on a variety of factors, including purchase date, amount spent, and items purchased. Plus, thanks to a significant upgrade to Vextras Postmaster app, Volusion users can now take advantage of these features too. With Postmaster, customers who complete a purchase in your Volusion store will be added to a specific MailChimp list for continuing the conversation.

Getting Set Up

After setting up your Vextras account, there are only two things to do to get the ball rolling: connecting to your 1) Volusion store and 2) your MailChimp account. To get started, from the Vextras dashboard, click the Store tab. Vextras will need some basic information, including store name (if you have multiple stores, you’ll want to give it a recognizeable name), URL, email address, and Volusion API Key.

After you’ve connected your Volusion store to Postmaster, you’ll want to connect MailChimp. To get set up with MailChimp, go to the Apps tab from the Vextras dashboard and choose the Postmaster option. Vextras will then prompt you to log in with your MailChimp username and password to connect the account. Because Postmaster connects to a MailChimp account with OAuth2 (which is a fancy way of saying "with your username and password"), only account users with the “Admin” or “Manager” role will be able to connect in the account using this integration.

The last step is to pick the list to which your new Volusion customers will be added. From the Lists dropdown, choose a list to connect with and click Apply to finalize the connection process.

Adding New MailChimp Subscribers

When everything is connected, the Postmaster app will take care of all of the details automatically. When a customer purchases a plaid shirt, not only will Volusion send over the customer’s email address, first name, and last name, it will also send over the purchase information for that transaction, including total spent, per-item price, and the name of the item(s) purchased.

As an added bonus, because Postmaster uses MailChimp’s OAuth2 connection, you can also track and segment which subscribers have come from your Volusion store. Postmaster will include a signup source in the subscriber’s profile.

Autoresponders and Targeted Campaigns

Having information about your subscribers is always preferable, but information is only as good as your ability to act on it. With our autoresponder feature, you can send targeted, automated emails to anyone who’s made a recent purchase in your store. Using autoresponders, you can set up anything from a "thank you" email to a coupon for your customer’s next purchase.

When creating a new autoresponder, you’ll be prompted to pick a trigger for the campaign. One of the options is "any purchase recorded." That means when subscribers have e-commerce information added to their profiles, this can potentially trigger an autoresponder to send to them within the hour (or any designated amount of time thereafter).

We can also turn that idea completely on its head. What if a subscriber hasn’t purchased from your Volusion store in a while? Using autoresponders, you can invite them to revist your store with a campaign set to send three months after their last purchase. Only subscribers who haven’t made a purchase in that timeframe will recieve the re-engagement campaign.

If you’re curious about setting up autoresponders based on e-commerce data, check out Neil’s blog post for an in-depth look at the process.

Lastly, let’s say that you add a new item to your store that would complement that plaid shirt, like a black driver’s hat. Using MailChimp’s segmenting, you can drill down to the subscribers who purchased the shirt, and send a targeted email to just those folks, letting them know about the hat.

Check out Postmaster for Volusion in our Integrations Directory.