First impressions matter. It is true not just for people, but for businesses as well.
The same holds true for restaurants that are looking to dip their toes into customer loyalty programs to improve customer interactions and repeat purchases. In this case, welcome emails are a great place to start.
So, what exactly is a welcome email? It's the first message that lands in the inbox of your customers right after they've joined your restaurant’s loyalty or rewards program. This email extends far beyond the usual email newsletter as it gives an invitation to your customers, introducing them to your community, and giving them access to your special discounts and deals.
For restaurants, putting considerable thought into your welcome email is crucial. Why? Welcome emails have some of the highest open rates of 50%, on average. In other words, they’re 86% more effective than standard email campaigns.
So the question is, how do you make the best out of your welcome email? Below are five great welcome email examples we have found that you can get inspiration from.
What's great about this email from Honey Baked is that it clearly explains its rewards system. $1 for one Piggy Point is very straightforward and easy to remember. It helps promote the idea that the more their customers order, the more points they will earn.
"Find a Store" CTA is also cleverly placed so that the user can find a location that is close to them and place an order using their Welcome Reward right away.
What would make this welcome email even better? Having pictures of the food items would give customers a better idea of what kind of food they can get and make them crave it, potentially encouraging more users to place that first order.
Corner Bakery Rewards
This welcome email has all the right elements: a great photograph of delicious food, a clear welcome offer ($5 off any purchase) followed by a strong CTA (Order Now to Redeem).
If your welcome email has those, your customers clearly understand what they need to do to take advantage of the offer and by when. And as we know, less confusion the marketing messaging has, the more likely people are to take action.
What would make this welcome email even better? People often experience decision paralysis when it comes to choosing food out of many options. You can help them by featuring best sellers or monthly specials to eliminate the abundance of options.
This email from Dunkin is really great as it clearly explains how points work, how to turn them into rewards, and how to use your rewards.
They also didn't miss to showcase their app which gives the users more rewards if downloaded. Including the "Get the App" CTA in a welcome email is a great way to increase app downloads. Dunkin' also showcased their latest offers and included their store locations for easier and faster purchase. This is a really simple yet really good example of an email that converts.
What would make this welcome email even better? "Learn more" CTA can sometimes be a bit vague causing people to not interact with it. Replacing it with a clearer option like "Visit Rewards Page" or "Sign Into Your Account" can set a better expectation as to what will happen after the button is clicked.
The first thing you see in this welcome email from Au Bon Pair is the thank you message followed by the image of a delicious salad. People like being appreciated and the email does a good job at making them feel that way.
Also, the email gives users straightforward instructions on how to earn the rewards by using the app, which is quite important since each rewards program is different and this helps eliminate potential confusion.
Finally, it provides an overview of what their customers can exchange for the points they’ve gathered, which is a great way to encourage repeat purchases and have customers look forward to their rewards.
What would make this welcome email even better? When your rewards program members just signed up, they already provided you with their contact and preferences information. It's nice to recognize that by offering them something in return. Saying "Get 50 bonus points when you sign up" makes members feel like they need to do even more to start collecting points. Instead, you could say "50 bonus points have been added to your account. Access them by downloading the app".
Steak n' Shake Rewards Club
What we like about this email is that it is pretty short and direct, but includes all the elements a converting welcome email should:
It welcomes its users with greetings and then gives them a FREE milkshake
A walk-through on how the points system works and what rewards their customers can get with the points
Pictures of delicious food and milkshakes
2 clear CTAs to find the nearest location or order online
What would make this welcome email even better? Without scrolling all the way down, it's not clear right away which restaurant this email is from. By adding a Steak n' Shake logo at the top of the hero image, the brand can promote user recognition.
In summary, sending a strong welcome email to those who sign up for your loyalty or rewards program is very important as it can really encourage the customers to make their first order and repeat purchases after that, especially, since it's one of the most opened emails you will send.