9 tips for sending effective abandoned cart emails

5 minute read
9 tips for sending effective abandoned cart emails

Cart abandonment is a thorn in the side of every eCommerce business, but abandoned cart emails can be a huge help to complete the sale.

In fact, eCommerce businesses lose about $18 billion in annual sales revenue due to cart abandonment.

Cart abandonment happens when website visitors add items to their online shopping cart but leave your website without purchasing.

This can happen for a number of reasons, including:

  • High shipping costs
  • The customer isn’t ready (which is very common)
  • Complicated checkout pages (such as mandatory account creation)
  • Finding a better deal elsewhere
  • Technical issues (such as slow-loading pages and broken links)

To recover this lost potential revenue, abandoned cart emails are a great option. They average more than a 41 percent open rate, which is much higher than the typical open rate of 17 percent to 28 percent. This is because of the personalized content and enticing offers.

The following are nine tips for sending effective abandoned cart emails that will help boost your revenue.

Send abandoned cart emails quickly

It’s critical to send abandoned cart emails within 24 hours of the cart abandonment. This will maximize your chances of recovering that sale.

If you miss this window, the freshness of the customer’s initial desire will have faded. If that’s the case, you’ll have a much smaller likelihood of closing the sale.

Create a series

One abandoned cart email can be effective, but a series can be even more effective. A good rule of thumb is sending a three-email series.

A three-email series generates an average of 69 percent more orders than sending one abandoned cart email.

You can start with a friendly reminder about the abandoned cart, followed by a more urgent suggestion to complete the purchase (such as limited stock available), and end with an incentive to complete the purchase.

Personalize abandoned cart emails

Overall, emails with personalized subject lines get a 29 percent to 50 percent higher open rate. This is true for abandoned cart emails as well.

When aiming to personalize a subject line, consider which items the customer left in their cart. For example, saying “Don’t forget your new boots” and including their first name.

Of course, any personalization should continue into the body of your email, too.

The email design matters

Your abandoned cart email design should highlight urgency and inspire customers to take action. This is best done with a simple design that emphasizes the purpose of the email. Of course, you also want to ensure that all images are eye-catching and that the entire email is on-brand.

When designing, keep the following elements in mind:

  • List all abandoned items in the customer’s cart with images and hyperlinks to the product pages.
  • Include any special offers, such as free shipping or a discount.
  • Provide a clear call-to-action for the customer to complete the purchase.
  • Include any related product recommendations that the customer might be interested in.

Use a clear call-to-action in abandoned cart emails

The call-to-action (CTA) in abandoned cart emails is crucial. Clearly, you want the customer to complete his or her purchase with you, but you still have to say it as directly and compellingly as possible.

It can be as simple as “Complete your order now,” but you also can add a sense of urgency by saying, “Order by midnight to save 15%.” 

Incentives can boost abandoned cart emails

Including incentives in your abandoned cart emails can help customers overcome whatever hurdle prevented them from purchasing in the first place.

Incentives give customers the feeling that they’re getting a deal that they can’t get elsewhere.

Options for incentives include:

  • Free shipping
  • Limited-time discount
  • Giveaways, such as a free gift with purchase

Leverage cross-selling and upselling opportunities

Abandoned cart emails are a great opportunity to cross-sell or upsell to customers. Cross-selling is when you recommend similar products, and upselling is when you recommend high-end products with upgraded features).

The key is that you don’t want to detract from your primary message (which is to complete the initial purchase). You can keep it simple with a section in the email that highlights popular items or product bundles. This can increase the potential order value from the email.

Keep in mind that if customers are feeling ambivalent about the item abandoned in their cart, product recommendations could help them find something they’ll be more interested in purchasing.

Social proof is powerful

Social proof refers to potential customers assuming that what others are doing is correct based on how often they see those actions. In other words, social proof is about looking to others to figure out the right way to interact in any given situation.

In terms of abandoned cart emails, this translates into a customer seeing others use a product or speak positively about it.

Ways you can include social proof:

  • Customer testimonials and/or reviews
  • User-generated content that shows other customers using the product in real life
  • Product recommendations based on what other customers who bought this item also bought that item
  • Your business’s overall star rating and total number of sales

Test different templates

A/B testing is a fantastic way to determine what type of abandoned cart email works best for your customers.

A/B testing is a method in which you compare two versions of an email feature to determine which one delivers the highest open rate, click rate, or conversions (whichever is most important to your goals).

Whether you’re testing a subject line approach, a template design, or something else, you’ll have data to show what is most effective.

In conclusion

Keep in mind when you’re crafting abandoned cart emails to speak to the customer with total care and customer support. If you have data on why they may have bounced from purchasing from you, mention that. For example, apologizing if your website was having issues. And continuously track and monitor the overall performance of your abandoned cart emails. If any metrics (such as open rate, click-through rate, or conversions) are lower than anticipated, tweaks can be made.

Not sure how to get started on automating effective abandoned cart emails, DailyStory can help.

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