EDM Journey Maps

A journey map is a visual overview (a literal map) that helps you plot out every touchpoint of the user journey in detail. The result will give you better insight into your customers’ behaviours helping you set up email flows to optimise the user experience.

When you’re plotting your customer’s journey with email, you are considering several different components that will set an automated email flow in motion.

All email flows start with an action (or in some cases, a lack of action). For example, when a customer places products into the cart but leaves before purchasing, the ‘Abandon cart’ flow is triggered. This flow automatically sends the customer a series of emails over a period of time (usually a few days) encouraging the customer to complete their purchase.

Of course, there are tons of flows you can set up to improve your customer experience. You can celebrate key events, like if they subscribe to your services (celebrate with a Welcome Series), or a first purchase (Thank Your or Bounce Back Series). Other flows are designed to smooth over those areas where your business is experiencing friction, like a flow reminding a customer to replenish their supplies.

These automated flows work for you in the background, reducing the amount of admin you need to do to create an excellent customer experience and retention. Now it’s your turn. Here are four key flows that you can adjust and optimise right now! For a full overview of the 7-key flows we use every day with our clients, please download the PDF below (The Ultimate eCommerce Email Flow Handbook)

Welcome Series

Trigger: When someone joins your main newsletter or completes a sign-up form (e.g. pop-up).

Emails: Typically 5-6 emails are sent over a period of 7-10 days.

Time delay: Test 1-2 days between each email. Measure your results and see which time intervals generate the best opens, clicks & sales.

Content: Tell your story and connect with your audience. If you’re using an incentive, ensure the incentive is easy to view and redeem online. Your prospective customers will want to build a relationship with your brand and understand your ‘why’. To this end, your emails don’t have to be all about products. In fact, some of our best performing flows don’t introduce products until later in their flows.

Content Ideas:

  • Your ‘why’
  • Why you’re different
  • Sign-up incentives
  • Loyalty programs
  • Social media channels
  • Behind the scenes of your product
  • Meet the team
  • Video or blog content
  • Latest product collections/releases
  • Testimonials/reviews
  • Guarantees (e.g. free shipping, returns)

Abandoned Cart

Trigger: Checkout started

Emails: Typically 2-3 emails are sent over a period of 2-3 days. Short and sweet.

Time delay: The first email should be soon after the checkout is abandoned. We recommend testing between 2-4 hours for the first email.

Content: Whilst it’s clear that displaying the product that someone has left behind in their cart is the key component of this email flow, consider taking a ‘customer service’ approach to the content of your emails. Did the customer have questions preventing them from purchasing? Were they unsure about shipping & returns? Offer assistance throughout this flow to help your customer get closer to finalising their transaction.

Dynamic content: Display your product as high in the email template as possible, with multiple buttons to return to their cart. Make sure you review the mobile view of this template as the majority of your audience will be viewing on a mobile device.

Incentives: You can consider splitting your flow between first time and returning customers. Offer a small discount for first-time customers only and multiple reminders for returning customers only.

Browse Abandon

Trigger: Viewed product, has not been in the flow in the past 30-days.

Note: The purpose of this flow is not to stalk your customers every time they view a product, but rather nurture them every so often once they visit your website. We recommend only allowing people to be in this flow once every 30-days to ensure a good user experience.

Emails: Typically 2-3 emails are sent over a period of 2-3 days. Short and sweet.

Time delay: The first email should be soon after the product has been viewed. We recommend testing between 2-4 hours for the first email. Total flow should be completed in 2-3 days.

Content: As a nurture flow, we want to provide relevant recommendations and products based on what the person has viewed. Show the product that was viewed in addition to related products and/or collections. Social proof and testimonials can play a strong role in this flow.

Post Purchase Thank You

Trigger: Placed order

Emails: This can range anywhere from 2+ emails depending on how you’d like to segment the flow into different cohorts. We typically recommend, a simple split between first-time purchasers & returning customers. You can of course go to town with flow segmentation – for example, by collections purchased from, by product purchased, number of orders all time, loyalty members or not, and so on.

Time delay: The first email should be sent closely after the placed order event has taken place. Be aware that you’ll also have an Order Confirmation transactional email that will be sent from your eCommerce platform (transactional email) – you want to avoid doubling up on the message and time sent with your first Post Purchase Thank You email.

Content: The purpose of this flow is to assure people they’ve made a great decision to shop with you, build brand advocacy, and answer any key questions they may have about shipping, returns, loyalty points and so on. You can also recommend products based on what they’ve purchased.

Note: If you’re using Klaviyo, the dynamic product recommendation engine is a great way to provide dynamic recommendations.

Incentives: Offers and deals to come back quickly to make your next purchase also work very well in Post Purchase flows.

Here’s what you need to get to work:

Action points:

  • Map your customer’s journey outlining key events, motivations, areas of friction, etc.
  • Identify what flows will improve your customer experience
  • Optimise your flows with our handy guide below!

Resources for you:

The Ultimate eCommerce Email Flow Handbook