6 Ways to Improve Cart Abandonment

6 Ways to Improve Your Cart-Abandonment Emails — and Recoup ‘Lost’ Sales — This Holiday Season


When it comes to boosting online sales, there may be no lower-hanging fruit for marketers than making efforts to reduce cart abandonment. After all, the consumer’s interest is clear — not only has he or she visited the e-commerce site to learn more about its offerings, but the potential buyer has also neared the conclusion of the purchase journey by adding the product to his or her cart.

According to research, though, in nearly 70% of cases, shoppers then leave the site without completing their purchases. While this is often inherently connected to the way online shoppers operate, with many users regularly saving potential purchases to their carts for later consideration or adding the items to their cart to get pricing totals with shipping/taxes/fees included, the consumers who abandon products in their carts are typically much closer to purchase than the average consumer — making them prime candidates for conversion.

Enter the cart-abandonment email. This tried-and-true tactic serves to remind consumers of their near purchases by sending them automated emails regarding any items left in their carts. Used on their own, these emails can bring serious shoppers back to your website to complete their transactions. But during the holidays, opportunities exist for marketers to employ additional tactics to pique added consumer interest and/or “sweeten the deal,” ultimately resulting in more saved sales.

If you’re looking for new ways to convert these interested shoppers into paying customers and boost your online sales this holiday season, consider these six tips for improving your cart-abandonment emails during this prime shopping period:

1. Use the subject line of your cart-abandonment emails to add urgency and/or holiday cheer to your messaging. A subject line such as “Cross one more line off your shopping list or get that gift you left behind” might spur recipients to move forward with that gift purchase they were contemplating, while one such as “Five days left for Christmas delivery” might convince any on-the-fence consumers to act fast and complete their orders.

2. Add a holiday countdown timer within the email header. In the same vein as using the subject line to create urgency among consumers, incorporating a countdown clock in your cart-abandonment emails serves as a more subtle reminder that the big day is fast-approaching, so gift purchases must be made soon to ensure that the items arrive on time.

3. Personalize the emails. To add a personal touch to your cart-abandonment emails, include the customer’s name in the greeting line, along with descriptions, imagery and pricing for the abandoned items in the body of the email.

4. Cross-sell. To encourage additional consumer spending, use your cart-abandonment emails to showcase other products that, based on his or her previous searches and purchases, the customer may be interested in buying. While these related products shouldn’t be the main focus of your cart-abandonment emails, including them in a less-prominent spot lower in the email body can help spur interest in additional products.

5. Add interactive elements. By introducing movement into a typically static space in your cart-abandonment email, the animated GIF — one common type of interactive element — is an eye-catching way to grab a consumer’s attention. And if added interactive elements are employed correctly — for example, with something like a flashing, colorful sale promotion in the header — they can help create urgency.

6. Incentivize the consumer. One way to do this is to offer a promo code or discount on the items that were left unpurchased in the customer’s cart. For additional insights or to gain more user data, consider requiring the consumer to complete an online survey before making the discount code available.

Would you like more expert guidance in using proven tactics like cart-abandonment emails to help boost your bottom line? At The Brandon Agency, our fully integrated marketing firm boats a team of marketing specialists who can cover all the bases in one place — including brand strategy, email marketing, creative, interactive, social media, analytics, SEO, conversion rate optimization and more. To get started with a strategy tailored to boost the performance of your digital campaigns, contact us today.

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