The first email was sent in 1970, and today billions of emails are delivered everyday to the delight and annoyance of billions of people around the world. If you ever wonder why you get so many emails, it is because they provide one of the highest ROI for marketing campaigns, an estimated $44.25 for every dollar invested in email marketing in 2011. So don’t count on getting fewer emails anytime soon, but you can use an app that can take your retail emails and organize them into a catalog for your iPad. Since most people opt-in to receive announcements from their favorite brands this application can simplify how you view the emails in a more digestible format.
The concept is the brainchild of Saurin Shah, a former executive of Digital Chocolate and Ajay Subramanian. The idea came to Shah after he witnessed the amount of emails his wife was receiving from retailers. Further research revealed the problem affected not only his wife but many users around the world.
The app collects the emails in your inbox and turns the content into a personalized shopping list of items you are interested in, because it based on your email. It pulls the brands, promotions, sales, discounts and other offers and pairs images with these offers in a visual format on the iPad. In essence your emails become a personalized catalog of thing you want, eliminating the need to sift through countless pages or ads for items you like or want. When you are ready to make a purchase you can do it without leaving the app.
In order to get the app going you have to give it permission to go through your email and collect the relevant information. If you want you can use an option that moves the original email into a separate folder. This lets you edit the emails giving you more option to customize your catalog.
It has almost 3,000 brands and it makes suggestions based on the site or brands you visit most. The company generates revenue through an affiliate fee anytime there is a purchase made through the app as well as advertised and promoted products. The site states it makes targeted promotional offers, advertisements and discount offers based on your purchase patterns and site usage. While the promotions and suggestions might be from products you are interested in, it might somehow defeat the purpose by sending you more information through email or other methods.
Globally email accounts will increase from an installed base of 3.1 billion to 4.1 by the end of 2015. As brick and mortar establishments compete with online commerce, email will continue to be one of the most important marketing tools for all retailers. Sift will not eliminate all the unwanted emails you receive, but it will make the emails you want for your shopping more manageable.