Elevating ECommerce Session 6: Post-Purchase Strategy


What are you doing to retain customers? Are you doing enough? Yes, you, the reader in the red shirt. What’s your post-purchase strategy like? Looking for some help?

Bless you! (Not sure the odds are in my favor, but maybe someone sneezed there). 


In this session of our Elevating eCommerce series, we chatted with a couple post-purchase experts from Vontélle and Harper Wilde

They were kind enough to share some of their secrets with us (and you) on all the ways they engineer their post-purchase experiences using best (as well as unique) practices to build loyalty and community among their customers.

You’ll find the highlights here, but if you’d prefer to watch the webinar instead, you can do so below:

Post-Purchase Strategy TLDRs

  • Brands must have loyalty programs and work to optimize their CX/CS experiences, and for bonus points, they can develop custom packaging and offer GWPs.
  • The metrics that matter: repurchase rate, LTV (by segments, e.g., by first purchased SKU), and CSAT/PSAT
  • Social causes/programs can inspire customer loyalty (and even increase LTV!)
  • The tools of the pros: Loop (returns), Malomo (shipment tracking), Daasity (analytics), Shippo (fulfillment), Narvar (post-purchase CX), Yotpo (loyalty)

1. Post-purchase tactics and programs

The Musts

A loyalty program: If you don’t have a loyalty program yet, it’s absolutely time to get one (especially given that over 90% of companies now have some kind of loyalty program), even if you start out by implementing a set-and-forget loyalty program. It turns out that 75% of customers prefer companies that offer rewards, and 61% hope that you interact more with them through offers and surprise gifts.

Optimize your CS/CX experience: Harper Wilde has found that customers who have had a touchpoint with their CX team have a higher repurchase rate than those who don’t. Your post-purchase experience extends to all areas of your business.

The bonus points

Highly customized and creative packaging: Although it may be challenging to have the resources to develop custom packaging (particularly multiple versions of custom packaging) early on in your brand’s growth, stand-out packaging is a surefire way to stick in your customers’ heads. 

One tactic to consider if you can’t quite go all the way on custom packaging is to enclose a note with every order. It doesn’t have to be handwritten, of course, but it should thank the customer for their purchase and perhaps include some information about your brand.

Offer GWPs: Early in the pandemic, Vontélle invested in fashionable masks before it was cool; Vontélle’s masks match their glasses. It ended up being a great investment, as their customers love the masks. 

GWP Pro-Tip: It can be challenging to measure the efficacy of GWP programs, because attribution, in general, is complicated. One hack to measure GWP is to only offer specific GWPs with particular campaigns (this will also reduce Pick and Pack complexity for your warehouse folks).

That way, you can identify customers who did receive the GWPs based on their purchase history and figure out whether that increased LTV and repurchase rate.

2. How to measure your post-purchase strategy (i.e., the metrics that matter)

Repurchase Rate: For Harper Wilde, 3 months is the ideal time to evaluate repurchase rate, and Vontélle tends to evaluate repurchases on a yearly basis. How you track repurchase rate depends on your brand and industry. 

For example, if you’re selling perishables like food or beverages and have higher purchase frequencies, you might want to evaluate repurchase rate on a monthly basis. 

Customer Lifetime Value: The mother, father, and all-powerful metric, customer lifetime value is a must-track metric…


…. its real value to your business is when you track LTV by first channel or LTV by first-order purchase. For example, Harper Wilde noticed when a customer’s first purchase includes a non-underwire bra, they have higher LTV.

CSAT (or PSAT): Often overshadowed by the oft-discussed NPS, CSAT (Customer Satisfaction) and PSAT (Product Satisfaction) are simple yet informative ways to get customer feedback about their experience with some element of your brand (purchase experience, CS experience, etc.) and your products, respectively.

If you implement these forms of customer quizzes, you can learn a lot from the extremes: why are your most unsatisfied customers unsatisfied, and why are your most satisfied customers satisfied? Taking the time to reach out to both groups will make each customer feel seen and respected, and they will likely give you serious insight into something that’s going wrong or right at your business. 

3. Causes and social impact 

Both panelists talked about causes that their brands contribute to, which can significantly improve how customers view your brand.

Vontélle, for example, works with the unhoused in New York City via WIN. Vontélle provides free eye care, helps get optometry appointments for underserved communities, and more.

And Harper Wilde donates 1% of all sales to Girls Inc. and has a free bra and underwear recycling program (a pain point for conscious customers, as both garments cannot be donated nor easily recycled).

Harper Wilde found that customers who participate in the garment recycling program have a 50% higher LTV.  

Supporting social causes certainly should not be done in the name of making more money. Rather, social causes (as in the case of Harper Wilde) can help a brand build a stronger community and find customers who are not only big fans of its products, but are behind it 100% in terms of political/social alignment. It’s an added bonus if doing so increases retention and LTV.

4. The panelists’ favorite tools for post-purchase strategy optimization

Exchanges/Returns: Loop

Shipment Tracking: Malomo

Post-Purchase Analytics: Daasity

Fulfillment: Shippo

Post-Purchase Customer Experience: Narvar

Loyalty: Yotpo

Dave loves words, wordplay, and he has the audaasity to use a pun in his bio. Dave runs content at Daasity, and he works to make sure that as many people as possible understand how a data-driven business is a better business. Outside of work, he can be found studying languages, lifting things up and putting them down, and tending to his citrus trees.

Special thanks to our friends at Daasity for their insights on this topic.
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Steve has entrepreneurship in his DNA. Starting in the early 2000s, Steve achieved eBay Power Seller status which propelled him to become a founding partner of VisionPros.com, a contact lens and eyewear retailer. Four years later through a successful exit from that startup, he embarked on his next journey into digital strategy for direct-to-consumer brands.

Currently, Steve is a Senior Merchant Success Manager at Shopify, where he helps brands to identify, navigate and accelerate growth online and in-store.

To maintain his competitive edge, Steve also hosts the top-rated twice-weekly podcast eCommerce Fastlane. He interviews Shopify Partners and subject matter experts who share the latest marketing strategy, tactics, platforms, and must-have apps, that assist Shopify-powered brands to improve efficiencies, profitably grow revenue and to build lifetime customer loyalty.

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