“The engaged list versus non-engaged, to about to lose, is some really interesting information I’ve never got from any email provider in the past.”
—Shane Biles, Director of Marketing at B-Wear Sportswear
Tracking sales generated by social media ads has always been straightforward for B-Wear Sportswear.
Email marketing is a different story.
For a long time, it was impossible to decipher the revenue tied to email campaigns. Their marketing platform provider didn’t display detailed customer engagement data, either. One could only make assumptions based on open and click rates.
Greater visibility and connectivity with BigCommerce was crucial for Director of Marketing Shane Biles. So B-Wear switched marketing platforms in January 2021 to Omnisend.
Since then, Biles can say with accuracy that Omnisend drives 40% of all company sales. (Social media ads contribute 40% of the revenue, with the remaining 20% coming from organic traffic.)
Adopting Omnisend has not just brought greater visibility, but a more sophisticated cache of marketing tools—SMS and email automations—to a company that’s been given a second chance.
The need for seeing the details
B-Wear—a subsidiary of 5B’s Embroidery & Screen Print—opened in 1986 and expanded to 80 stores. A tough economy prompted the parent company to dissolve the retail arm in the mid-1990s.
Yet 5B’s owners hung onto the hopes of a retail component for their contract business. They resurrected it in 2016 with some changes.
Focus largely shifted from licensed college merchandise to season-themed and specialty shirts and accessories. More screen printing, less embroidery. And there are only two retail stores, both located in central Ohio, with no intentions to add others.
Company leaders aspire to grow B-Wear online. Omnisend emerged as the answer for the seven-member marketing team.
The integration provides sales figures plus other customer data points, such as “who we’re keeping, who we’re losing,” says Jason Slattery, marketing manager. “Everything from our customers that are engaged, to those that that need an incentive to shop with us. It’s helping us build a strategy.”
For instance, they’re experimenting with lists. Should some promotions go to the entire subscriber list, with others sent only to segments with a purchase history?
B-Wear’s dedicated customer success manager (CSM) has encouraged such tests and regularly suggests improvements. She meets weekly with Slattery and his colleagues to help digest data like click map activity, and glean insights from aspects such as subject line performance.
“The data we’ve gotten from Omnisend has been super beneficial,” says Lauren Rose, who handles email and social media marketing alongside Kayla Dusz. “It’s helped us understand what our customers like with email and text and what they don’t. What they respond to. What time they respond.”
Promotions enhanced with SMS
Rose appreciates that Omnisend is user-friendly in designing an aesthetically pleasing email—something the previous provider lacked. Greater creative options, plus performance measures, are critical when you’re releasing campaigns at B-Wear’s pace. The company sends an email nearly every day promoting a sale or product, and sometimes twice within 24 hours.
Biles says the tactic is necessary for remaining relevant within the industry. Competitors are emailing daily. “And it drives a lot of revenue. The data provided by Omnisend suggests our sales benefit from daily campaigns.”
The average email promotion, sent to all subscribers, nets nearly $8,000 in sales.
They’re also tapping text messaging to accelerate sales. The cadence is closer to once a week, or biweekly in some cases.
Rose explains they use SMS to announce a prominent sale or special launch. A corresponding email promotion is typically sent in the morning, with the SMS in the evening.
“We may have a ‘free shipping today only’ email that goes out. Some customers won’t get that email until the following day, when the sale is already over,” Slattery adds. “We’re able to use SMS as an alternative to reach those customers.”
There are 11 times more email subscribers as there are SMS subscribers. Thus far, SMS makes up just 0.85% of messages sent through the platform. But, sales from the first six months of SMS campaigns pay for almost two years of Omnisend.
Automations steadily add to revenue
While promotional campaigns are the lion’s share of sales, a number of automations quietly operate behind the scenes to contribute to B-Wear’s revenue.
Automations equal less than 1% of messages sent—0.31% to be exact. But they bring in 9% of Omnisend-generated sales.
Hooking Omnisend’s abandoned cart solution to BigCommerce
Omnisend’s seamless integration with BigCommerce, which brings the opportunity to enable numerous workflows, was a selling point. Biles and team were familiar with automations, as they used BigCommerce’s built-in option to remind shoppers of the items they left behind in their carts.
Omnisend’s abandoned cart solution enhances the user experience by showing the products left in the shopping cart and providing marketers with the option to add other recommendations. It’s also the only email marketing platform that accesses BigCommerce shopping carts across any device.
Now B-Wear has a dynamic workflow of multiple splits, based on cart sums, and SMS sprinkled in. In Rose’s words, “you can really get nitty gritty with it.”
BigCommerce’s abandoned cart solution has always performed well for B-Wear. Omnisend’s integration and automation capabilities have built on that success, to the tune of a 15% increase in the recovered revenue rate.
Almost half of all people who click on one of the messages in Omnisend’s workflow make a purchase. The conversion rate for the series is 47.59%.
“Personalization goes a long way,” Biles says. “We can dynamically show abandoned products, add recommendations, and better target with workflow splits.”
For instance, they have the ability to be more aggressive in pushing the sale for an abandoned cart filled with $100 worth of product, versus one worth only $10.
Experimenting with the welcome series
B-Wear is also experiencing success with its two-part welcome series. The initial enticement to sign up was a 10% discount.
They tried 15% and sales per email jumped by 390%. Orders increased by an overall 121%.
The improvements motivated the switch to a 20% discount offer upon email signup. In its first two months, it has resulted in:
- A 66% conversion rate
- $2.37 revenue-per-email (RPE)
- An 8,033% lift in RPE over promotional emails
“All of our automated emails have proven to be beneficial,” Slattery says, also mentioning a workflow targeting those who browse the site but don’t add products to the shopping cart. “Once you set them up and let them run, we’re generating income from them with minimal effort.”
All automations, combined, have a conversion rate of 42%. Their correlating RPE is just about 50 times more than that of B-Wear’s RPE for promotional campaigns.
A “cutting-edge” platform for competing
Omnisend is baked into B-Wear’s daily operations. If the team isn’t sending a campaign or working on an automation, they’re checking the data for what’s working and what could use improvement.
Biles calls it a cutting-edge service.
“If other brands are sending texts, we can use text. If people are using pop-ups, we can use pop-ups. If people are using automation, we can use automation,” he says.
“Anything our competitors are doing on the email marketing side of things, we’re able to do and compete with by having a partner in Omnisend.”