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4. Send follow-up emails to customers who ordered a sample

One of the most important features of the WooCommerce Product Sample plugin is the ability to send a follow-up email to customers after they order a sample. This helps you to convert them into paying customers, encouraging them to order the full version of the products. As a result, the email can have a big impact on your sales.


  • By default, the follow-up email is disabled. This is because while it contains helpful wording straight out of the box, we understand that you need to review this - and perhaps make changes or translate it into your language - before you start sending it to customers.
  • The follow-up is only sent for orders that contained free samples. It is not sent when the customer only ordered standard products. If the customer ordered a combination of samples and full products, then only the samples they ordered are listed in the email.

Customizing the follow-up email

Product Sample follow up email

Use the following instructions to enable and configure the follow-up email.

  1. Go to WooCommerce → Settings → Emails.
  2. Click 'Manage' next to the email called 'Product sample follow-up'.
  3. Configure the email as needed:
    1. Enable/Disable - Tick the box to enable the email notification.
    2. Additional recipients - This option only appears if the WooCommerce Multiple Email Recipients plugin is also installed, and allows you to include any additional customer email addresses in the email if required.
    3. Email delay - Enter the number of days after ordering samples that you would like the follow-up email to be sent to the customer.
    4. Subject - The default subject for the email is "How did you like our samples?" You can change this to anything you like.
    5. Email heading - The default heading at the top of the email content is "How did you like our samples?" You can change this to anything you like.
    6. Main content - This text appears above the table of product samples which the customer ordered. You can change this to anything you like. The following placeholders are supported:
      • {site_title} - The name of your website, which is set under General → Settings.
      • {site_url} - The URL of your website.
      • {order_date} - The date that the customer ordered the sample(s).
      • {order_number} - The order number from when the customer ordered the sample(s).
    7. Additional content - This text appears below the table of product samples and is a good place to add extra text, such as adding a closing greeting or signature block.

Email logic

The follow-up email contains advanced logic to ensure that it is only sent where appropriate. For example, the email will not be sent if the customer has placed a subsequent order since ordering samples. This will prevents it from being sent if the customer has already ordered the full product.


Helping customers to order the full product more quickly

The follow-up email contains links to the full version of each product. Customers can click on these to quickly access the single product page, from which they can add the full version to their cart.

After that, they still have to access the WooCommerce cart and checkout before they can complete their order. To speed up the final stages of the ordering process, we recommend installing the WooCommerce Fast Cart plugin. This opens the cart and/or checkout in a popup directly on the product page, as soon as the customer adds the product to their cart. They can complete their purchase without leaving the page, which makes them much more likely to finish the process.

WooCommerce side cart drawer layout

Improving performance for stores with many orders

In order to send the follow-up email at the correct time, WooCommerce Product Sample uses the default WP Cron scheduler to query the orders in the WordPress MySQL database once per day.

The WP Cron is triggered when a real user visits the site. For stores with a small or medium number of orders in the database, the user will not notice any difference (for example, it took 0.00508 seconds on our tests for a store with 1,000 orders). However, this can temporarily slow down your site if there are larger numbers of orders in the database, or if you are using slow hosting.

To avoid this, we recommend disabling the default WP Cron and using a proper web server cron service instead. This is standard advice for any website with a large number of daily visits and is not specific to WooCommerce Product Sample. For instructions, please see this tutorial from ThemeIsle.

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