About email permission and consent
Everybody has experienced the growing online pain of receiving SPAM emails. It's increasingly annoying and the use of SPAM filters is getting more and more mandatory.
Because we offer products to personalize and time marketing mail for your consumers, we also advise you in ensuring the need for permissions on the mails that you send to your customers.
Later in the article, we will direct you to links describing some of the rules you need to comply with in order to ensure the right level of consent for your email permissions.
Rules are unfortunately very different from country to country and region to region.
An example is in the EU you have to get a positive consent - an OPT-IN - from the recipient on the accept of receiving marketing material. However, in the US, the CAN-SPAM act states that you can send recipients marketing mails, but must give them an OPT-OUT option. Furthermore in every country, the various authorities govern the marketing laws and have their own specialized rules and requirements. For instance, in Denmark, you will have to receive the mentioned positive acceptance of receiving email marketing, unless you send to actual customer marketing specific products as accessories or similar products, connected to a recent previous purchase. However you will need to have an OPT-OUT of such marketing in the checkout process, but it doesn't need to be a positive consent, and there is no concrete definition of what is an accessory?
There are a lot of grey areas - would a Playstation game be a legal promoted product if you bought a new TV? - It actually depends on your way of categorizing your products and what you sell all together - Confused? You are not the only one.
In all cases, we will urge you to get in touch with your local e-commerce association and seek information and guidance. Breaking the law can be costly and most important the rules and laws are defined to protect your customers.
When working with Triggered Emails - Hello Retail is the one sending the email marketing material to the recipient.
The usage of Triggered emails varies a lot from customer to customer, but we have pre-packaged various ways of using it, Abandoned Cart, Post Conversion and Price drop notification, to name some of them.
In terms of permission handling with Triggered Emails, it is very important to understand the way forward.
These are the following 3 opportunities:
- Synchronize your email permissions with Hello Retail through the designed API's and available connectors to you mailplatform - Remember we do not have any knowledge if these emails have been giving their full consent according to the laws in the country where you operate - so this is your sole responsibility to ensure.
- If you are in a market where the OPT-IN is not necessary, you can let Hello Retail send triggered emails to all email addresses that we see on your website - ie. from you conversion tracking (where an email is also often provided on the actual order) Please be aware that this is NOT legal in the EU, except for various local exceptions like the one mentioned above for the DK marketing laws. As a general approach, you are solely responsible for all triggered emails, and we strongly encourage you to leave this setting off or be completely aware of when you are enabling the opportunity.
- Send the triggered email to the recipient if they have been giving the consent to the addwish user base. This is a special case since we also are running a wishlist service where users are signing up for addwish marketing activities. If the user is on the addwish permission list, addwish will, in an addwish branded email, let them know about the trigger. For instance - if they are leaving products in the basket, addwish can in an addwish branded email write to the customer, with the opportunity to put the products on their wishlist for Christmas.
Some final notes
As email marketing is a really good channel for keeping connected with your customers, it comes with great responsibilities. Since Hello Retail provides various tools to obtain a good connection and positive email marketing approach it is also possible to break the rules by use the tool in the wrong way or in the wrong circumstances, for example by feeding emails to the system that has not been giving their consent.
This is without our ability to control since you can't see on an email whether they have been giving their consent, nor in which market they origins from.
Therefore, we will have to rely on your usage of the product - and for that reason, we also offer the service and the settings under strict responsibility placed solely with you as an e-commerce owner. If you are in doubt you are of cause welcome to contact your account manager or our support.
Here is a guide for our Danish Ecommerce customers from FDIH focusing on how to avoid SPAM and how to get the right level of consent from the user.
Great table of various countries and where to find the law text on how to handle the permissions, including the US CAN-SPAM act.
The founding book of the concept Permission Marketing - ruling out traditional interruption marketing techniques, replacing them with the positive consent to get marketing materials - here's how it's described in Wikipedia: "Permission marketing is a non-traditional marketing technique that advertises goods and services when advance consent is given."