Email Marketing 6 min read
07 Jul 2023

Email Gamification in eCommerce: Strategies and Best Practices

Email Gamification in eCommerce: Strategies and Best Practices

Who doesn’t love a good game? Even if you are all grown up, you can still enjoy playing games as they give us a feeling of control, accomplishment, and fulfillment. You can evoke the same feelings in your subscribers with email gamification to motivate them to interact with your business more often and boost brand awareness.

Email gamification is a fun, interactive way to enhance your eСommerce email marketing and drive customer engagement. Incorporating game mechanics like quizzes or puzzles can boost customer retention, encourage action, increase revenue, and strengthen customer relationships. From boosting customer engagement to driving conversions, we'll delve into gamification benefits, enlightening statistics, effective strategies, and best practices.

What is Email Gamification?

You've played games before, haven't you? The thrill of defeating your friends at a round of darts or the satisfaction of scoring 2/6 in Wordle (admittedly, that's quite tough!) is pretty hard to beat.

Email gamification combines that love for games with email marketing, one of the most effective channels for customer interaction. Adding game mechanics, like quizzes or puzzles, to emails to encourage subscribers to engage more with the content. This not only ramps up the fun factor but also helps to achieve shared goals between you and your subscribers. As customers interact with the gamified elements, they receive immediate feedback on their performance and are guided toward new achievements.

Gamification can be more technically described as incorporating game design elements into non-gaming contexts. This innovative strategy can be applied across various platforms, including websites, learning management systems, and, notably, emails.

Email marketing gamification, specifically, involves integrating interactive gaming elements into your email communications. This strategic fusion of entertainment and marketing is a straightforward yet potent approach that can greatly enhance user engagement. The primary objective of this method is to stimulate recipient interaction, fostering a deeper connection between your brand and your audience.

Benefits of Email Gamification in eCommerce

It brings serious business benefits that could significantly impact your eCommerce success. Here's what you stand to gain:

Increased Customer Engagement and Interaction

Gamification turns ordinary emails into interactive experiences that captivate your audience. It encourages customers to engage with your emails, increasing click-through rates and overall interaction.

Average click through rates

(Source: AWeber)

As pioneers in the field, AWeber's email marketing software was among the first to support using AMP technology. They offered AMP for Email technology to their clients. They integrated it into their own strategies, applying AMP-powered features like polls, surveys, feedback forms, and image carousels in their emails. Rather than focusing on a single campaign, AWeber assessed the impact of AMP on their entire email marketing approach.

Enhanced Brand Awareness and Repeat Purchases

By providing an enjoyable experience, gamified emails can help increase brand awareness and loyalty. Customers are more likely to remember your brand and return for more purchases.

Improved Conversion Rates and Revenue Generation

Gamified emails are not just engaging; they're also persuasive. By incentivizing actions like making a purchase or filling out a survey, you can boost your conversion rates and generate more revenue.

Higher Email Open Rates

Have you ever received an email with the tantalizing promise of a game or potential rewards? Intriguing, isn't it? 

The word "game" in the subject line can significantly increase your open rate. This is the power of gamification — it not only piques curiosity but also stirs the competitive spirit, leading to higher email open rates and amplifying the overall efficiency of your email marketing campaigns. 

Furthermore, by designing the game in such a way that the answer or the next step is provided in a follow-up email, you can enhance anticipation, drive continued engagement, and maintain consistent interaction with your subscribers.

game samples

(Source: Really Good Emails)

Why Should You Care about Email Gamification?

Think about this: How would you feel about a brand that adds a little fun to your inbox? That's right, you'd probably feel much more engaged and connected to the brand. But don't just take my word for it. The benefits of email gamification are well-documented:

Boosts Customer Retention

When you add creative games to your emails, subscribers get something a little different than the usual promotions. This can help to engage them more, and personalized experiences based on past interactions can appeal to them, aiding in their retention.

Encourages Users to Take Action

Games tap into our love for fun, leveling up, and scoring cool rewards. This makes users more likely to take action, driving conversions. Customers are more likely to buy from a brand if they enjoy playing a game with it.

Enhances Customer Relationships

Gamified emails help users interact with your brand in a fun way without feeling like you're just trying to sell them something. This positive interaction helps build healthy, long-lasting customer relationships.

Provides Personalized Game-based Incentives

Tailor your games and rewards to your customers based on their past interactions. This will not only make the games more fun for them but also increase the likelihood that they will engage with your emails.

Helps You Build Customer Loyalty Programs

Gamification can help promote your brand through customer loyalty programs. If customers find your emails fun, they might even share them with friends and family, bringing new leads for your business, and this can all have a positive effect on your ratings. These ratings and reviews are very important for your eCommerce brand.

Gamification Statistics You Have to Know

Gamification is a great way to not only diversify the content of your emails but also boost the performance of your emails. To give you an idea of how powerful email gamification can be, here are some eye-opening statistics 📈:

  • Stylus, a leading retailer in Ukraine, introduced gaming elements to their St. Patrick's Day email series, catalyzing a remarkable 15% revenue increase.

(Source: Promodo)

  • Gamified reward programs implemented in email marketing campaigns have been shown to enhance customer lifetime value by 48% and the conversion rate by 15%, as per
  • OptiMonk's data show that "wheel of fortune" elements results in a conversion rate of 13.23%, a significant improvement compared to conventional email pop-ups, which have a rate of 5.10% to 7.65%.

These figures speak for themselves, don't they? 😮 By implementing gamification in your email marketing, you can potentially bring your eCommerce business to the next level.

Effective Strategies for Email Gamification

Before we delve into the nitty-gritty of email gamification strategies, it's vital to take a moment to reflect on the tools that empower these strategies. The landscape of tools at our disposal today is vast and varied, with many harnessing the power of Artificial Intelligence (AI). Why, you ask? AI-powered tools simplify your tasks, accelerate your processes, and save you heaps of time and effort. A win-win situation, wouldn't you say? Intrigued? Stick with us to uncover “How Is AI Changing eCommerce.”

Now that we've seen the benefits and the impressive stats, it's time to roll up our sleeves and get into the practical part. Here are some strategies you can use to gamify your emails:

Interactive Quizzes and Surveys

Interactive quizzes and surveys are a great way to engage customers. They can provide valuable insights about your customers, and if you add a reward at the end, they can also drive conversions.

(Source: AMP email from HubSpot)

Reactivation Email Marketing Campaigns

Use games to re-engage customers who haven't interacted with your brand in a while. A reactivation campaign with a gamified email can reignite their interest and bring them back to your website.

(Source: Stripo AMP email template)

Reward Programs and Loyalty Points

Reward your customers for their loyalty by offering bonus points for completing certain actions. This not only drives engagement but also encourages repeat purchases.

(Source: Email from 100% PURE)

Holiday Email Marketing Campaigns

Holidays are a perfect time to engage your customers with gamified emails. Use holiday-themed games to captivate your audience and drive conversions.

(Source: Email from Stripo)

Best Practices for Email Gamification

Let's rewind a little 🔄. Just as with any email marketing strategy, if you want your gamified newsletters to hit the jackpot, you've got to play by the rules. So, let's map out the best practices you need to follow.

  1. Setting Attainable Objectives: Every good game has an end goal and a finish line. The same goes for your email gamification. It's vital to set a clear, achievable goal that aligns with your marketing objectives. Think of it as the final boss your customer has to conquer — it's got to be challenging but not impossible.
  2. Establishing Transparent Guidelines: What's a game without rules? In the chaos, that's where! Clearly lay out the rules for your email games. Make them easy to understand and readily accessible to avoid any frustration for your customers. After all, we're here to have fun, right?
  3. Encouraging Voluntary Engagement: If there's one thing we can agree on, it's that nobody likes to be forced into something, even if that something is a fun game. Participation in your email games should be voluntary. You know what they say, the best things in life are unexpected!
  4. Providing Timely Feedback: Just like how we crave that pat on the back after a job well done, your customers also want to know how they're doing. Provide them with instant feedback during the game, whether they're smashing it or need a little more practice. Remember, feedback is the breakfast of champions!
  5. Recognizing and Rewarding Participant Efforts: Winning isn't everything, but it feels good for sure! While not every player can win, it's great practice to reward all players for their efforts. It could be a small discount or exclusive access to a new product line. Just a small token to say, "Hey, thanks for playing! You're awesome!" 🏅

And let's not forget about the golden rule, the icing on the cake:

  1. Maintaining Compliance with Best Practices: Beyond these game-specific practices, don't lose sight of your general email best practices. Keep your emails responsive, user-friendly, and reflective of your brand voice. The game is just part of the package, after all.

With these best practices, you're all set to level up your email marketing game. 🚀

Use Email Gamification for Your eCommerce Business to Drive Better Results

In the realm of eСommerce, email gamification is a powerful tool to drive customer engagement and conversions. It's not just about selling a product; it's about providing a memorable and enjoyable experience that makes your brand unforgettable. By incorporating email gamification strategies and following best practices, you can add a sprinkle of fun to your emails, helping to enhance your brand's image and profitability. Ready to game on? 🎮

Oleksii Burlakov

Oleksii Burlakov

Oleksii is an accomplished content writer specializing in email marketing. With a keen eye for persuasive language and a deep understanding of effective email strategies, he creates content that helps email marketers achieve higher open rates, click-through rates, and conversions.

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