30 Second Summary
Understanding and harnessing the power of Klaviyo email flows is essential for the success of your DTC ecommerce brand. These automated messages, triggered by specific customer actions, generates consistent revenue, boosts engagement, and drives conversions for your business. With this step-by-step guide, you'll learn how to go from zero-to-launch on your first email flow in Klaviyo!
What Email Flows To Create First
- Welcome Flow
- Browse Abandonment Flow
- Add To Cart Flow
- Abandoned Cart Flow
- Post-Purchase Nurture Flow
- Replenishment Flow
- Cross-Sell Flow
- Winback Flow
For a step-by-step, actionable guide to build each of these key flows, get our DTC Flow Foundations Playbook. It shares the strategies, tactics & methodology behind $300M+ in email revenue generated for DTC brands at our email marketing agency Longplay.
The 6 Features Of A Klaviyo Flow
Think of these basic features as your building blocks that allow you to create any flow you want to send the right message, to the right customer, at the right time.
1. Flow Triggers
Flow triggers are the events that set your email flow into action. To decide on what your flow trigger should be, ask yourself the question "When do I want someone to receive these flow emails?".
For example, a post-purchase flow would be triggered by the event "placed order" because you want customers who have ordered to receive these emails.
These triggers could be anything from a new customer signing up to your newsletter, to an existing customer making a purchase, or even someone abandoning their shopping cart.
2. Flow Filters
Flow filters are tools that help you narrow down the audience who will be included in your email flow. It ensures that only email subscribers who meet certain criteria will enter into & continue through the email flow.
For example, you could set up a filter to only send an email to existing customers rather than non-purchasers. Or one that only sends an email to customers who have spent a certain dollar amount in your store.
PRO TIP: Klaviyo will check your flow filters before it sends each email in the flow. So someone can enter your flow, then exit it midway through.
3. Trigger Filters
Trigger filters are similar to flow filters but are used to narrow the events that triggers subscribers to enter the flow. This means you can exclude people who meet or don't meet certain criteria from even starting the flow. For example, you would use a trigger filter to only send a post-purchase flow to customers who bought a specific product.
4. Flow Emails
Flow emails are the actual emails that your customers will receive as part of the flow. Klaviyo has a range of email templates in their email builder, or you can use a tool like Backbone to create optimized, custom email layouts for each of your flow emails.
5. Time Delays
Time delays are exactly what they sound like: they determine the length of time between emails in your flow. Your time delays control your subscribers' journey through the flow to ensure they don't receive too few or too many emails.
6. Additional Email Filters
Additional email filters are set on each flow email to control when an email should or should not be sent to a customer. For example, you may have cross sell flows promoting different products, and you want to make sure customers don't receive emails promoting products they've already bought.
Using Klaviyo's Flow Library
Klaviyo's Flow Library is a useful resource with pre-built email flows that most e-commerce brands need. It can help you shortcut the process of using the flow builder and get an entire flow structure built in seconds. You can also check out Backbone's Flow Library for more in-depth guides to building your email flows.
Building Your First Email Flow In Klaviyo
1. Set up/login your Klaviyo account
Start by setting up/logging in to your Klaviyo account. If you're just getting started, you'll need to provide some basic information about your business, including your website URL and e-commerce platform.
2. Integrate your Shopify store
Next, you'll want to integrate your Shopify store with your Klaviyo account since most of the triggers & flow filters you'll need to use will be based on actions from Shopify. Klaviyo integrates seamlessly with Shopify - just navigate to 'Integrations' in the dashboard, select 'Shopify,' and follow the instructions to connect your store.
3. Select "Create Flow"
Once your store is integrated, it's time to select "Create Flow" to build a new flow from scratch. You'll find this option under the 'Flows' tab on your Klaviyo dashboard.
4. Select Your Flow Trigger
The first step in building your flow is to select your Flow Trigger to determine how someone will enter this flow. There are 5 types of triggers you can select but most often, you'll be using the "Metric" trigger which is when a subscriber takes a certain action (such as placing an order or viewing a product).
5. Add your emails
With the trigger in place, it's time to add your flow emails. Simply drag & drop the number of emails you want the flow to have. Once you're done, you can go into the email builder to design each of your emails.
6. Add your delays between emails
You also need to add your delays between emails to make sure subscribers get each of your flow emails at the right time.
7. Add your flow filters
Next, add your flow filters to further segment which subscribers will enter and exit the flow. The most common flow filters include the number of purchases they've made, whether they've made a purchase since starting the flow, or their location.
8. Add your trigger filters
Next, add your trigger filters. These filters are applied at the time a potential subscriber triggers the flow, letting you exclude customers who do not meet certain criteria from the flow.
9. Add any additional email filters
Finally, you might want to add any additional email filters. These filters allow for you to control which emails within the flow a customer gets.
And there you have it - your first Klaviyo email flow!
1. Should I turn on smart sending on my flow emails?
We typically recommend not to turn on smart sending on these key flows because they are often massive revenue-drivers. Just make sure to check your flow filters to ensure customers aren't receiving emails they shouldn't be!
2. What's the difference between campaigns and flows in Klaviyo?
Campaigns are one-time email sends, often used for newsletters, promotions, and announcements. Here is a list of the different types of email marketing campaigns. On the other hand, flows are automated email sequences that are triggered by specific events or conditions.
3. Where can I find support on building email flows?
Klaviyo's support team can often answer basic questions & Backbone's expert email services in our "Here-For-You" consultant can guide you through email flow setup & strategy!
Becoming A DTC (Direct-to-Consumer) Email Flow Master
Understand your customer's journey
Map out the various touchpoints from the moment a potential customer first discovers your brand, to when they make a purchase and beyond. Each of these stages represents an opportunity for personalized communication via an email flow.
Build flow maps
Flow maps are visual representations of your email flows. They help you understand the path your customer takes through the flow, the emails they'll receive & opportunities for more touchpoints.
Find Flow Email Inspiration
There are numerous resources for finding inspiration for your flow emails. Resources like Really Good Emails, Milled, or our DTC Flow Foundations Playbook can spark ideas for unique ways to nurture your audience in email flows.