March 26, 2014

Emailed Receipts: A Missed Opportunity

The other day I received this email from Buffer:

It’s a receipt for my monthly subscription. Instinctively, I opened the email, quickly glanced at the charge to verify the dollar amount, and archived it.

Later that day I reflected on that moment and thought, “What a missed opportunity.”

Every month Buffer’s email receipt captures the attention of (arguably) its most valuable users: its paying customers. But it’s wasted with a message that goes unnoticed. For a company intently focused on wow’ing its users, I think they can do better.

The email copy is friendly but it’s the same each time. Furthermore, does anyone read their receipts? I didn’t until writing this post. The receipt should be an extension of the brand and opportunity to delight customers.

Perhaps its monthly email receipts could look like this:

Buffer is very transparent and its team is the face of the brand. In this example, recipients get a glimpse into the lives of these people, exemplifying their dedication and appreciation of support.

Buffer sends 16,401 receipts each month. That’s 16,401 opportunities to inspire 16,401 smiles.

If your business sends receipts, consider how you can:

  • Delight your customers with something unexpected
  • Add variability to capture attention
  • Reenforce your brand and become memorable

What do you think? Have you seen good examples of creative, delightful email receipts? Share with me on Twitter (@rrhoover) and if you’re up for it, subscribe for more of my essays (I won’t send you a receipt, though).

Photo taken from Joel’s Instagram.

More Writing by Ryan