Email Tear Down: Red Dress Boutique


Last week I walked into a shoe store and became an annoying customer. I monopolized the salesperson’s time, and no, it wasn’t on purpose. There were 15 different styles of the same shoe — I.Kid.You.Not. I was overwhelmed…do I go with my tried and true neutral or do I try one of these other tantalizing prints or colors?

Apparently, my experience isn’t uncommon.

For years, psychologists have studied the effect of having many choices. According to a New York Times article, “the presence of choice might be appealing as a theory, but in reality, people might find more and more choice to actually be debilitating.”To learn how a top brand handles the overwhelming bounty of choice, I decided to explore the email strategy of one of my new favorite fashion brands — Red Dress Boutique.

Why Red Dress Boutique?

Started as a small brick-and-mortar clothing store in Athens, GA, Red Dress Boutique has a devoted fashion influencer following and a vibrant Instagram presence. The founders, husband-and-wife team Diana and Josh Harbour have an eye for playful, and trendy clothing that has brought them an appearance on Shark Tank and a company that’s rapidly growing beyond $15M in revenue.

What I Did vs. What They Did

What I did

To find out if this company was doing everything that they could to provide the most relevant and engaging emails, I did just a little bit of detective work, including subscribing to their newsletters, abandoning a shopping cart full of goods, and buying a super cute pair of earrings.

Here’s what I purchased

Red Dress Boutique Earrings

Red Dress Boutique’s Nothing Like It Black Tortoise Hoop Acrylic Earrings were the perfect accessory for date night with my husband.

What they did

I received a very informative welcome series email, promotions, trend updates, back in stock notifications, and new product announcements.

See the complete teardown

red dress boutique

Why Red Dress Boutique?

The average office worker gets 121 emails a day, and that’s just on their work account. In a world where everything moves quickly and attention spans are short, it can be difficult to capture someone’s attention. As a marketer, you try to get your emails to stand out from the crowded inbox. The core ingredients to successfully do that — right audience, right content, right time, should also now include right design. A minimal and personable email design can create high converting emails. Klaviyo makes it very easy to create these emails and have successful email marketing via our powerful features and in-house help experts.

Red Dress Boutique is an online women’s fashion store with a strong fashion influencer following and a huge Instagram presence. I wanted to see if their email marketing strategy would be as vibrant as their products and if there’s anything that they could be doing better. To find out, I signed up for emails with Red Dress Boutique, took a few actions, and watched to see how the experience unfolded.


The backstory of Red Dress Boutique

Red Dress Boutique, a trendy women’s clothing store, started as a small brick-and-mortar clothing store in Athens, GA. Husband-and-wife founders Diana and Josh Harbour quickly added an ecommerce store, and after an appearance on Shark Tank have found themselves at the helm of a $15M and growing company. On creating the concept, Diana says, “ I also wanted to create this place that would bring color and confidence and happiness to a woman’s day.” Their brand is heavily recognized and applauded by fashion influencers and bloggers everywhere.


Here’s what happened with Red Dress Boutique

step1 teardown 120x120 022019

We signed up for their email newsletter and received a welcome series email.

step2 teardown 120x120 022019

We abandoned a cart and did not receive an abandoned cart email.

step3 teardown 120x120 022019

We purchased after the abandoned cart and received order confirmation and shipping emails.

step4 teardown 120x120 022019

We received many emails letting us know of new product launches, back in stocks, outfit ideas, and promotions.


Email deep dive

Let’s look at their one-week email strategy.

1. Sign up for their welcome series emails

2. Abandon a cart and see if there’s an abandoned cart email

3. Make a purchase and see if there are post-purchase emails

4. Receive email content and determine if it is relevant and easy to digest


Red Dress Boutique Emails

red dress boutique
Red Dress Boutique Shipping EMail 3


This article was originally published by our friends at Klaviyo.

About the author

Steve Hutt

Steve has entrepreneurship in his DNA, starting in the early days of online commerce when he achieved Power Seller status through his eBay store. This propelled him to become a co-founder of, a contact lens and eyewear retailer. With a successful exit from his startup, he embarked on his next journey into agency work in e-commerce and digital strategy.

Currently, Steve is a Senior Merchant Success Manager at Shopify Plus, where he helps identify, navigate, and accelerate growth in the complex world of commerce.

To maintain his competitive edge, Steve also hosts the eCommerce Fastlane Podcast and Shopify Founder Stories, a top-rated twice-weekly podcast where he interviews Shopify Partners and subject matter experts who share the latest marketing strategy, tactics, platforms, and must-have apps, to help Shopify brands improve efficiencies, grow revenue, profit, and lifetime customer loyalty.

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