Abandoned Cart Emails: 10 Best Practices with Examples

Anton Shabatov - November 15, 2018 - 0 comments

abandoned cart emailsMobile shopping is convenient but still a bit trouble-making tool. For buyers, it can have some difficult requirements or technical issues that can prevent completing the transaction etc. For sellers in most cases is the unfinished purchase. That is the reason we have to study the effectiveness of an abandoned cart email in the internet retail industry.

Barilliance research highlights the fact that the problem could be in the platform people use. The rate of abandoning the carts for desktop users is 73.1%, while for mobile users it is 85.6%. So we can conclude that mobile owners will more often leave their buying process unfinished. And as we know how overwhelming mobile devices are, we will more often face this issue.

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What are Emails about Abandoned Carts?

These letters are delivered to the clients who sent some product to their virtual shopping carts, however, did not complete the purchase. They are extremely effective when it comes to bringing back the buyers. SaleCycle report says that for about half of such emails are opened and for about 1/3 of them encourage the receiver to get back to the online shop.

The thing is that customers usually leave their carts without intentions. The reasons can be different: site crash, timely session end, the complexity of the purchase process and many more. Many sellers underestimate this tactic, even the largest representatives of the market. However, you do not have to follow their example in this aspect. Learn the benefits of sending abandoned cart emails instead.

How to Send Abandoned Cart Emails Right?

Here are some general recommendations about sending such emails. They are aimed at teaching you to plan the correspondence in advance and deliver a few letters without looking annoying and needy.

  1. Define the stage the buyer reached in the purchase process. You will be able to adjust your message to the customer when you know the reason the buying operation failed. Usually, it happens when the person misses some information, required for the shipping, or when your site shows the service fees.
  2. The first email should be helpful. You must avoid being pushy, especially when you deliver email right after the customer left. So focus here on helping to complete the purchase. You can also ask for more info like what issues he has faced and provide the alternatives.
  3. Add some sense of urgency in your second message. The second letter should be sent at least in 24 hours. Here you can inform the client that the cart can expire soon. This will help to create some sense of urgency.
  4. In the third letter reveal some incentivizing offers. In some cases, it can be appropriate, but it is better to deliver it at least in 48 hours. This is to reduce risks being marked as spam. In this email, you can provide incentivizing offers like a discount (the most common choice) or something more interesting.
  5. Abandoned cart email subject lines. Anytime you try to reach the customer, make sure that they will understand the reason you are writing to them. Subject lines, as we already know, are the most important thing in making the receiver open the email. So if your offer discount or just want to make a reminder, display it in your subject line:
  • “Complete your purchase now to get 15% off!”;
  • “Just a small reminder: your cart is waiting”;
  • “We are keeping your cart till your next visit”.

10 Best Practices from the Pros

Bellow, we have collected tips from professional marketers all over the internet. Their experience and observations make it possible to improve the process of getting the client back to the shop. They do not teach us some basics but provide some additional suggestions for acting more professional and effective.

  1. Analyze the data about the cart. It will help you to define possible reasons for abandonment and design your further strategy. For instance, if the person has left the purchase for more than $500, there is no need to mention that you offer free shipping for over $50 bill. Maybe you will need to provide additional info about benefits of the product or availability of the human assistance for delivery or installation.
  2. Use Facebook Messenger to follow up. According to the abandoned cart email best practices of many shops, this approach has led to higher open rates. People sometimes need more notifications. Moreover, they will more likely react to the message than an email. To make sure, combine email and messenger campaigns.
  3. Personalize subject lines. It does not always mean you have to use the name of the customer. But you can start with phrases like “Didn’t you leave something in your cart?” or “We miss you already!” and similar.
  4. Mention potential reason for abandoning. Analyzing the available data, you can guess possible issues the client has faced. It can be technical issues, complicated checkout process, unexpected additional costs etc. Connect your message in an email to these reasons.
  5. Add some humor. You can get up to 22% growth in open rates by making your campaign a bit funny. People like humor and this approach can improve their mood which is good for sellers.
  6. Show some items from the carts. There is no need to demonstrate all the cart content. Usually, it can be a few last added products or the most expensive ones. Use this trick for second or third follow up abandoned shopping cart email, in order not to sound too pushy.
  7. Provide a clear call to action. After demonstrating the items, offer actions the receiver can make with the give information. You cannot expect the buyer to open another tab to find your shop. Add some link or button like “Get back to the shop” or “Complete the purchase” etc.
  8. Display new related products. People may lose interest in the previously selected items, but they may be still determined to buy something in your shop. Add some bestsellers or the alternatives.
  9. Countdown emails. This is a very effective practice when the person wants to buy something but cannot make up their mind to do so. Create some sense of urgency and encourage the customer to make the choice.
  10. Focus on getting back to the cart. The main purpose of your email is to bring the person back to the shop where their shopping list is already done. So, by adding some mentioned aspects, always remember to add a call to action that will lead the customer back.

Abandoned Shopping Cart Email Examples

Let’s take a look at some good examples to get the understanding how your own email about abandoned shopping cart can look like.

1. Amazon.

This biggest retailer knows how to write simple but effective abandoned cart emails. Its message is simple and understandable. You see immediately what shop have you visited recently. The photo of the product serves as an additional reminder. You can click on the link and move right to the checkout, which is convenient and time-saving. Among downsizes, we cannot skip the bottom part, which is too “heavy”.

2. Google.

Google is a great example of simplicity and style. This principle is reflected in their notifications as well. We have a photo here, which grabs our attention. The subject line serves as a guiding line for the next step we can make. A call-to-action part is understandable and simple too. However, you could be more courageous and add a few more elements in order not to look too minimalistic.

3. J. Crew.

Here’s another example of simplicity, which does not look too simple at the same time. They added the imitation of the website interface with the categories shown at the top of their abandoned cart emails. The demonstration of the wished item is included as well. The phrase “shopping bag” is in capital letters to make it more noticeable. Here’s also a personalization part when we see comments about the buyer’s choice. And the last line intrigues and encourages the receiver to visit the website again to find out more about new stuff.

4. Microsoft.

Along with Google, Microsoft sticks to the minimalistic approach in design and the copy. It is clear and everything goes straight to the point. However, it has e few extra moments that make it complete and its simplicity does not look as “not enough”. Reminders about the products in the best-abandoned cart emails help in refreshing our memory. And call to action is straightforward as well. Moreover, pay attention to the top right corner as there are some incentives. They could be a part of the regular conditions, but for some people, it can be a beneficial thing.

How to Optimize Your Checkout to Reduce Cart Abandonment

To minimize chances for your carts to being abandoned, you can improve the purchase process by considering the following suggestions:

  • Provide a few different payment options. Buyers do not always have enough balance on their card to make the payment online as sometimes their shopping is impulsive (they are just killing time, or they saw the ad etc.). Let them use some alternatives like PayPal or add some cash on delivery option. In such cases, buyers will more likely finish their purchase. Inform your clients about the choice they have.
  • Add the guest checkout feature. People usually do not want to create an account to buy one or a few things. It may sound tempting to make such a requirement in order to collect info for promotional purposes. But you will use potential buyers who do not want to provide their data.
  • Add a checkbox with the sign-up invitation. You can keep the person interested in buying and have the chance to collect the contact info for sending newsletters and other emails as well. Just invite visitors to create an account after they bought what they wanted. And reveal the benefits they get by doing so.

Make the process of checking up easy and understandable and it will reduce the number of cases carts in your shops are abandoned and the necessity of abandoned basket emails.


Sincerely, your Proofy team

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