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How Gamification Can Help Improve eCommerce Marketing Performance

Email marketing
Mobile App Marketing
October 28, 2019
12 min

Gamification marketing is penetrating eCommerce as one of the hottest trends that promises business owners to increase customer engagement and drive sales. Gamification elements are widely implemented in some eCommerce websites or app features, as well as in email marketing and SMM techniques. But before we cut to the chance and explore the potential of gamification for eCommerce marketing activities, let’s begin with some basics. What does gamification mean, and what is gamification in marketing?

Gamification marketing is a strategy of borrowing and incorporating gameplay elements into a non-play environment to engage people and retain their attention. According to the survey conducted by ReflectDigital, 93% of people consider this form of marketing as a very engaging one. In fact, 60% of respondents admitted they would be more likely to buy from a business or brand if they loved playing a game with it, and 86% of those who have experienced gamification previously.

What gamification is for eCommerce

Benefits and potential of gamification marketing for your eCommerce business are immense as it gives positive emotional experience. Lots of retail stores have already applied some gamification ideas in their business to drive sales, attract and engage new customers, and grow brand awareness. Gamification marketing in eCommerce is a great way to gain a competitive advantage.  

Gamification in eCommerce means implementing a game feature that will maintain the whole gaming concept. eCommerce owners can reward users who are involved in a “game” with discounts, free items, and other possible prizes.

This unconventional marketing tactic should be at the centre of your attention, as almost 87% of retailers will be implementing gamification marketing in the next 5 years. Gamification marketing will be a great choice not only for brick-and-mortar stores but also for online shops to skyrocket customer engagement and turn their shopping experience into a fascinating journey.

To incorporate gamification marketing effectively, you have to focus not on selling things but on the game itself. The main task is to come up with something fun that will have the purpose of engaging customers rather than promoting specific products. Try to create a memorable experience for your customers, implement points to give a sense of competition, and so on.

Do not neglect the psychological part of your customers’ nature to create efficient game mechanics with relevant goals.

Gamification in email marketing

When it comes to email marketing, gamification is not the most widely used tactic. However, it can be extremely beneficial to engage email subscribers. By simply introducing a quiz in exchange for prizes from your store or an entertaining game, you can achieve tangible results.

Check out all the potential of gamification implementation in email marketing:

  • Expand your email subscriber list with engaging, interactive elements in your emails that will grab attention and spur to sign up for news. Follow the rule of a bigger reward for low effort.
  • A reward is usually the main reason people react to emails and subscribe to email distribution. This gamification element seems exciting to your customers and, therefore, entices them to play. A reward is a great motivational factor that makes people interact with your email.
  • When creating emails, don’t forget to create buzz around the latest offers, discounts, sales seasons, etc. For instance, set a challenge to win a special discount for particular products available online.
  • Making a game fun and incorporating it into your email can turn a dull and generic marketing activity into a fascinating experience.
  • Encouraging people to make an action can ensure more clicks. Sparkle customer interest in incorporating a simple game that will reward and spur them to click on the link.

Check out the case study that shows that gamification marketing can result in getting 3 times more revenue from email marketing and expanding email database by 2.5 times.

Customers who have played the game inside the email called “Roulette” ended up making a purchase on a website, leading to a web transaction increase by 15%. A person who plays a game gets a discount code to buy products on a website.

email gamification

Gamification in applications

Integrating gamification elements into an eCommerce application increases sales and attracts a broader audience. The main thing is to tell what reward customers will get at the end of a game. Please make sure you set some challenges for users and provide clear instructions. Give badges and offer daily bonuses to the most active users to motivate them to play more. To boost your social media presence, it’s recommended to reward users who share their game with friends.

A trendy eCommerce store called AliExpress has already implemented gaming solutions. The goal is to retain users and give them a positive experience, which will result in higher customer engagement.

ali express gamification

AliExpress has created whole new game sections in their application with a list of different games that users can try out. You win coins that you can multiply by playing more. In the end, you can exchange these coins for things like discount coupons, or use them for other activities. Games are a great way to increase engagement as well as overall application satisfaction.

Gamification on a website

It’s possible and even recommended to add game elements on your website to take customer loyalty to the next level and boost engagement. Launch a website contest to promote products on your website. In exchange for contact information or email, your customers should get the chance to win a discount or a free product from your website.

Spin-to-win games are one of the most popular elements. Once again, a customer has to enter their email to receive a promo code and discount that they won playing the spinning game.

Loyalty tiers are another effective gaming element. Employed by websites like e.l.f Cosmetics, it consists of getting a reward for repeated purchase habits. The more you spend, the bigger the reward you get.

elf benefits

Implementing a quiz is also a great option used by brands like Fabletics. This element can help retailers get as much information about their customers as possible to offer their clients a more personalized list of products. Customers who play in a quiz will get the best matching products to their taste and style.

Gamification in social media marketing

Implementing gaming solutions to your social media marketing activities will facilitate not just increased engagement but also business awareness. Quizzes can also be incorporated into your social media marketing. By asking people to vote for one out of two products and telling which one they like more is a great way to stay in touch with your customers. This interactive way can also be an excellent avenue for promoting new products.  

Another great option is a “Guess” rubric that will be perfect for the leading social media platforms. For example, a common practice is to display an emoji set that will showcase the main plot of a movie or TV series. Customers complete the puzzle, guess the title, and leave their answer in the comments below. Comments are one of the major user engagement metrics. Therefore, guess games can contribute to the overall popularity of your social media profile and attract new users through this engaging activity.  

To sum it up

Now you are aware of the enormous potential of gamification marketing and the main examples of its implementation into the diverse marketing activities. It’s now your turn to introduce gamification principles into your eCommerce business. Be ready to experiment, and you will definitely attract new customers, retain them, and spur to make a purchase on your website. Explore this new avenue to boost sales and take your business to the next level.  

Written by
Valerie Lavska

CMO at Promodo

With over nine years in the realm of content creation and marketing, I've honed my expertise in both B2C and B2B landscapes. You may have come across my insights in renowned blogs like Smart Insights, SemRush,, Forbes, and various others. I hold a steadfast belief that businesses thrive when they simply communicate complex processes, underscoring the advantages and genuine value they offer to their clients.

October 28, 2019
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