If your brand sells products that are “consumable” or need to be replaced on a regular basis, replenishment campaigns are the best way to encourage a repeat purchase while being in tune to your shopper’s needs – if they’ve bought this item from you already, they’ll need a reminder to restock before they run out. Items that are considered consumable include:

1. Edible goods: food, K-cups, etc.
2. Office supplies
3. Cosmetics (which can either run out or expire)
4. Product accessories: air/water filters, cellphone cases, batteries, etc.
5. Apparel that needs replacement after extensive use (such as running shoes, which should be replaced after several hundred miles)

Replenishment campaigns allow marketers to truly epitomize the “right message at the right time,” by reaching out with a reminder at exactly the time when a customer is likely to run out of product, while capitalizing on a shopper’s need for a product and driving a repeat purchase.

We were particularly impressed with a replenishment email we received from PlasticPlace, a company that sells garbage bags and liners for trash cans in a variety of sizes. After creating an account with PlasticPlace and eventually purchasing a 100-bag pack of 40-gallon garbage bags, a month passed before we received the following email from PlasticPlace (with the subject line “When would you like your 5%?”:

As you can see, PlasticPlace was offering us 5% off our next purchase of garbage bags, with the condition that we specify when we wanted to activate our discount: whether that was immediately, or 1, 2, or 3 months from the email’s delivery date, depending on how quickly we were going through the trash bags we’d bought.

PlasticPlace is doing a lot right with this replenishment email – first, they sent the email approximately 1 month after we made our first purchase. Not only would were we likely to be at least partway through our trash bag purchase by this point, but we were also likely to have a sense of how quickly we were using up the product and how soon we’d need to replace it.

Second, by asking us when we wanted to activate the coupon on our second purchase, PlasticPlace recognized that different customers will go through the product at different rates – they don’t know, for example, if we’re a small office of twenty or a huge company of several hundred. In the same way that we’re also learning how soon we’ll need to replenish the product, they’re learning about our ordering frequency.

Finally, by providing a 5% discount off our second order, PlasticPlace essentially combined a replenishment campaign with a post-purchase thank you. They thanked us for our business in the body of the email, and told us to make sure we activated the coupon at a time that was right for us. The discount acted as an incentive for us to continue shopping with this brand, and the reminder to restock gave us a heads-up before we actually ran out of trash bags – making the email customer-centric from both an appreciation standpoint and a “friendly reminder” standpoint.

The key to effective replenishment campaigns is to remind your shoppers to stock up on their items before they run out, so your shopper will be sure to repurchase before it’s too late. PlasticPlace added huge value to our shopping experience by not only incentivizing our repeat purchase, but by seeking to learn exactly how frequently we’d need to replenish our trash bags (and thus learning more about us as a customer). Too many retailers assume that a shopper will simply come back once they’ve run out of their product and a need for replacement presents itself, but a good replenishment reminder – like this one! – prevents that “need” from creating a problem.

To learn more about how you can create and deliver effective replenishment campaigns, visit zaius.com – or, reach out to us directly at insights@zaius.com or at 877-658-2570.

Sruthi Narayanan
Sruthi is the Marketing Associate at Zaius. When she's not writing and editing marketing content, Sruthi spends her time volunteering for a Cambridge-based arts organization, singing in a post-collegiate a cappella group, and reading novels to her cat, Monty.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.Required

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

You May Also Like to Read