< Back

How to get started with optimization for triggered emails

Daisy Gray

By Daisy Gray, Customer Success, Team Lead

How to get started with optimization for triggered emails - featured image
21st February 2022

Effective marketing isn’t a case of set and forget. It requires ongoing testing and optimization to make sure you’re delivering content that resonates with your audience, converts shoppers into customers and continues to do so amidst a changing landscape of fluctuating digital trends and consumer tastes.

But when it comes to optimizing your website and email marketing, there are so many different elements to optimize that it can leave you scratching your head and reaching for a strong coffee before you’ve even begun.

In this blog post, we take a look at how to optimize your triggered emails, sharing basic optimizations to get you started, next level optimizations to step it up a gear, and advanced optimizations to make your Fresh Relevance personalization best in class.

Let’s dive in.

Basic optimizations

Look and feel

The look and feel of an email is important; a visually unappealing email is less likely to entice recipients to click through to your website or read all of the content.

Try testing different versions of the same element, such as the copy, content, images or the messaging, size and color of your CTA.

Wait time

One of the first things you can optimize for triggered emails (such as cart and browse abandonment emails) is timing. In some instances with clients, we’ve seen that a shorter wait time actually increases conversions and sales uplift. On the other hand, clients who sell higher consideration products, such as jewelry, can benefit from longer wait times.

Awaze tested deployment times of browse abandonment emails for their cottages.com and Hoseasons brands, comparing the difference in performance between sending the first email 15 minutes, 30 minutes or 60 minutes after abandonment. After one month of testing they found that browse abandonment emails sent 15 minutes after abandonment yield the best conversion rates.

Number of stages

Some shoppers want to sleep on a purchase, especially if it’s an expensive or one-off buy. Others simply get distracted or are still shopping around when that first abandonment email arrives. That’s why we recommend testing the effectiveness of multi-stage triggered email campaigns. In fact, our clients see an average sales uplift of 21% by adding multiple stages to their triggered abandonment emails.

Getting Personal offers a good example of a successful multi-stage triggered email campaign. The company has seen a 54% sales uplift with their multi-stage browse abandonment email campaign.

Next level optimizations

Content displayed at each stage

Once you’ve got your multi-stage triggered email campaigns up and running, you can start to optimize the content you display in each email. You can test the efficacy of discounts at different stages – some retailers wait until the second or third email to provide a discount, for example. Other areas could include testing which stage testimonials and social proof are most effective.

Product recommendations

Product recommendations are a great addition to triggered emails, enabling you to showcase more of your stock and help shoppers find the perfect product for them. Vapouriz added product recommendations to their cart abandonment emails, recommending items shoppers can add to their cart to meet the free delivery threshold. This has helped them achieve a 10% increase in AOV from cart abandonment emails.

Additionally, you can test which types of product recommendations work best, for example, similar products vs products tailored to the individual’s browsing history.


Personalized banners are a great way to engage customers and increase click through rate. Getting Personal has seen success with banners that are personalized with the customer’s name. The company tested the effects of this dynamic name personalization on their emails with a series of A/B tests and found that personalized banners increased their click-through rate by 15%, their conversion rate by 7% and sales by 37%.

You could also try testing the effects of banners with category or product personalization.

Subject line personalization

Including the recipient’s name or the name of the product they’re interested in can be an effective way to stand out in a crowded inbox and boost open rates and click rates, as customers know what to expect from the email.

Try testing product personalization, name personalization or a combination of both in one subject line.

Advanced optimizations

Fixed delay wait times

Dynamic wait times aren’t ideal for every business. If you’re a B2B company, for example, a cart abandonment email that gets triggered in the evening is more likely to sink into your recipient’s inbox overnight.

With Fresh Relevance, you can manipulate the send time dynamically and test the effectiveness of dynamic vs fixed wait times. For example, you could test a dynamic 20 minute delay vs a 20 minute delay during office hours with a pause during out of office hours.

Advanced subject line personalization

The more tailored your subject line is, the better you can set expectations for your recipients. But with so many options, it’s worth taking this optimization further. With Fresh Relevance, you can assess whether your subject line personalization performs better at a category, product or even SKU level. You can also look at whether naming one product is enough or if listing all the products the shopper has carted or browsed is more effective.

Cart layout optimization

How the products in your cart abandonment emails are displayed can have a huge impact on customer interaction. Fresh Relevance can help you test layouts and get the right balance of information to display, for example by testing large vs small product images or different social proof indicators.

Audience targeting

Who you target for your abandonment campaigns is an important consideration. Should you target your whole customer base or just those with higher intent? With Fresh Relevance, you can test out different criteria to only contact those who are most relevant and save attention for BAU campaigns for others with lower intent. For your browse abandonment emails, for example, you could test the difference between sending to those who have visited your website more than twice in 7 days vs all visitors.

Final thoughts

Optimization is a crucial part of effective triggered email campaigns but with so many elements to test, you need a plan of action before jumping in. Once you have your triggered emails set up, start small with our basic optimizations, such as wait times. Once you’ve gathered results and made changes, move onto our next level optimizations, such as including product recommendations, and finally try out the advanced optimizations, such as audience targeting.

Our Testing and Optimization tool empowers you to optimize your triggered emails in the ways discussed above and our customer support team is on hand to make your optimizations go further. Book a demo to learn more about testing and optimizing your marketing with Fresh Relevance.

Book a demo to get started with testing and optimization today

Daisy Gray

By Daisy Gray

Customer Success, Team Lead

As Customer Success Team Lead at Fresh Relevance, Daisy ensures that clients are achieving their maximum potential from the real-time marketing platform.