Product Recommendations for Email Overview

Marketers want to send highly targeted product recommendations to existing and prospective customers. Monetate's Product Recommendations for Email feature allows you to display contextually relevant product recommendations within email campaigns that you configure within Monetate and then copy and paste the campaign's HTML snippets from the platform into your email service provider (ESP) template.

Here are some example uses of recommendations email experiences:

  • Recommend red products to site visitors who previously had red shirts in their carts
  • Display only recommendations that are in stock in a customer's preferred size
  • Create a "Complete the Look" recommendation that displays products to complete an outfit based on the products previously viewed

Product Recommendations for Email leverages the same platform features used in Monetate's Web-based recommendations with some minor differences.

Instead of inserting a slider action on your site in which the recommended products appear, Monetate generates an HTML snippet that you place into your ESP template so that once the recipient opens the email, the dynamically generated recommendations appear as images that include the product information you select, such as product title, price, and product image.

The products recommended are based on the email experience's configuration as well as the recommendation strategy and its configuration.

Styling the rendered images requires basic knowledge of HTML and CSS. Advanced knowledge of Jinja templating further expands the possibilities for custom styling.

Implementation Requirements

To take full advantage of the Product Recommendations for Email feature, you must meet the following requirements.

Product Recommendations for Email must be a part of your contract. This feature is part of the Recommendations add-on to the core Monetate platform. Contact your dedicated Customer Success Manager if you're unsure if your contract already includes email recommendations or if you want to learn more about adding it.

You've completed the traditional Monetate implementation. Ensure that the Monetate tag has been integrated into your site; that you're collecting and passing to the platform data about products viewed, carted, and purchased; and that you've uploaded a product catalog. These steps are required so that Monetate can collect on-site behavior—for example, the product IDs or SKUs customers viewed, carted, or purchased—and then apply that behavior to catalog attributes for algorithm configuration such as filtering by color, price, brand, or category.

The SKU data sent to Monetate from your site must match the SKUs in the product catalog(s).

An action template for email recommendations has been added. This template contains easy-to-customize inputs that allow you to select recommendation strategies, control slotting logic, pin products, and customize the styling of the recommendations. The default template returns standard attributes for dynamic display within an email, such as the product's title, price, and image. You can customize the product information that appears for each recommended product as needed.

You've enabled a Customer View for the account for cross-device targeting. So that you can get the most from email recommendations, Monetate must know who your customers are and tie that information back to observed on-site behavior. The Customer View synchronizes an on-site customer identifier with the Monetate ID generated by the Monetate tag. For email recommendations, an identifier, such as email address or some other unique customer ID, must be passed back to Monetate when the recipient opens the email. This identifier must match the customer ID created and enabled for cross-device testing and targeting as part of the Customer View.