Digital Marketing

How to produce a successful cart abandonment email

Adele Button

OK so hands up, who has carefully selected items, added them to their basket, and then failed to follow through with the purchase?

We’ve all done it, whether it’s because the delivery charge seemed extortionate, we’ve suddenly been tempted by competition or our attention has been taken elsewhere. 

Research by Salescycle claims that now the average checkout abandonment rate is 75.6%. 75.6%! That’s high by anyone’s standards. But luckily some of this lost revenue can be clawed back with a simple but effective cart abandonment email. 

Below are some stats that show just how powerful a good cart abandonment email can be:

  • Nearly half (47%) of consumers open cart abandonment emails 
  • Over a quarter (26.9%) click through 
  • Over a third (31%) convert from a click
  • Abandonment cart emails generate a 4.1% uplift in sales 

Ok, so you know they can be effective but what things do you need to consider to make sure you get the most of yours?  

Below is a general guide, but obviously different types of products and brands will require a slightly different approach so don’t forget to always keep your specific target audience in mind when designing your cart abandonment emails. 

Infographic of a successful cart abandonment email

1. An informative subject line 

A compelling subject line is a must for getting your email opened. Here are some of our top tips:

  • Make sure the reader can easily understand what the email is about. ‘Oops, you have left items in your basket’ or ‘Complete your purchase’
  • Using personalisation, like their name, in the subject lines implies a stronger relationship and improves click through rates. ‘Jane, did you forget something?’
  • Why not get specific and actually mention the product that they left behind, as this will help to jog their memory. ‘Don’t forget about that blue dress’
  • Create a sense of urgency. ‘Hurry, there’s only 3 left’ or ‘Items added to your basket have almost sold out’ 
  • Get emotional! ‘Why did you leave me?’ or ‘Where’d you go?’ can also be impactful

2. Persuade them back 

There is a strong possibility that the recipient left the product for a reason. Maybe they found something cheaper or more suitable elsewhere, or they simply didn’t need the product anymore. If this is the case, your email shouldn’t be wasted because you can still persuade them back to your website for a different product or a browse. 

Including your site navigation in the email will encourage them back to your site to buy something else. You can also tempt them back with product recommendations. If the recipient had simply gone off the original product you may be able to entice them back with alternatives. Make sure you display these products with clear images. 

3. Make delivery and returns simple and free

If you offer free delivery and returns, make sure this is clearly stated in your email. It can make a big difference - what has the recipient got to lose? 

Don’t forget to always keep your specific target audience in mind when designing your cart abandonment emails.

4. A positive customer review

It’s been found that a high proportion of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal reviews and they can have a significant impact on online purchasing. So why not include a good star rating and link to a positive review to help seal the deal. 

5. It’s all about the Call To Action (CTA)

When it comes to cart abandonment emails, there is only one thing you want the reader to do – go back to their basket and complete the order. So make sure your CTA is unmissable and to the point so that the reader knows what to do. It might seem obvious but make sure your CTA actually links back to the shopping basket and not just the homepage, you would be surprised how many retailers make this basic error.

Here are some examples of strong copy for your CTA:

  • Get me
  • Shop now
  • View shopping bag
  • Complete your order

6. An image is a must 

You need to remind your reader what they’ve missed, they may have done a lot of browsing and forgotten what they were looking at. An image of the product is an absolute must to accurately jog their memory and remind them what they liked about the product in the first place. 

7. Alternative ordering method

It can be handy to offer the customer an alternative ordering method, like by phone for example. If they have experienced technical difficulties then they may welcome the opportunity to speak with your customer care team. 

So that’s it, our top tips to consider for cart abandonment emails. Below are a few examples and we have highlighted the points! 

ASOS cart abandonment email

Twinings cart abandonment email

Topshop cart abandonment email

Debenhams cart abandonment email

Kentico is an all-in-one CMS, e-commerce and online marketing platform that offers easy to manage marketing automation to increase your marketing effectiveness and the ROI of your campaigns.

Ridgeway has a wealth of experience in working with ecommerce and brand clients. Our team of 45 experienced digital professionals means we can offer you the right blend of skills to meet your needs.