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Marketing | Feb 24
Jessica Malnik on January 27, 2021 (last modified on January 26, 2021) • 9 minute read
Abandoned cart and checkout emails aren’t exactly new. They’ve been around for close to a decade.
The purpose of abandoned cart emails is to help you capture revenue from visitors who have expressed clear intent they are interested in your products but haven’t pulled the trigger yet.
So, how do you write an abandoned cart email that wins back your customers?
Simply focus on these 3 key things:
In addition, an abandoned cart email is sent in a timely fashion – usually within an hour of a customer abandoning the item. It’s good practice to follow up one or two more times after the first email if the customer hasn’t made the purchase yet.
To help you bring your email marketing game to the next level, in this post, we’re not talking about theory, but sharing a handful of abandoned cart email examples that you can send, including:
The first abandoned email cart example we are going to dive in comes from Lululemon.
“A few months ago, I browsed the Lululemon online store and added a pair of shorts to my cart—but I didn’t check out,” says Natalia Blair of Noetic Marketer. “One day later, Lululemon sent me an email with the subject line, “’We see you looking.’ That email didn’t convince me to purchase, so Lululemon sent me a second abandoned cart email the following day.”
The headline read as follows: ‘Our gear moves fast (just like you).’
Lululemon immediately created a sense of urgency in the headline by saying their gear moves fast.
On top of the sense of urgency, the brand complemented their potential customer. Knowing that their target audience is athletic, saying that they move fast could create a more positive association between them and the brand.
The subject line made me think of working out and how enjoyable it is to move fast while wearing Lululemon.
I opened the email, and the message inside was short and straight to the point.
The title was, ‘Make a Move,’ again instilling urgency in the reader. A simple subheading encouraged me to take another look at the products I’ve been eyeing, as they’re ready to move. Below the copy was a ‘shop now’ call to action.
The most impressive aspect of this email was the pay with Apple Pay sign right under the call to action. This feature made the checkout process seamless, as all I had to do was pay with my fingerprint. Lululemon had the pair of shorts saved in my cart, and Apple Pay had my information stored.
I purchased the shorts and was very pleased with the service I received. A job well done, Lululemon!”
Editor’s Note: If you are looking for a quick and easy way to see how all of your emails are performing, including abandoned cart workflows, use this Klaviyo Email Performance Dashboard.
“The best abandoned cart email I received was from Link Whisper, an internal linking WordPress plugin developed by Spencer Haws of Niche Pursuits,” says Nikola Roza of Nikola Roza- SEO for the Poor and Determined. “Below is the email copy and further below is my reasoning why it’s so effective at getting more buyers for the product.
It looks like you started the checkout process for Link Whisper but didn’t complete your purchase just a little while ago. In your cart, you left the following:
Link Whisper Starter: 1 Website
1 x $77.00
The total amount of your order is $77.00 and it’s not too late to complete your purchase!
In fact, I want to make it a really easy decision for you to complete your purchase. Use coupon code: whisper10 at checkout for $10 off!
All the products are still waiting for you. Click the next button and:
Complete your purchase
Why does this email work so well?
First, the email came in the first 6 hours after I had abandoned my cart.
Link Whisper was still fresh on my mind and I, as every human (we’re hardwired like that) like to finish what I’ve started (and the Link Whisper team knows that).
Second, they said, ‘it’s not too late’ with the subtle implication being that at one point it will be too late.
Third, they understand I’m busy and can’t think of everything, so they tell me exactly which products I left in my cart.
Fourth, they offered me a $10 coupon code. This is the part that’s probably the most effective in getting people to buy there and then.
$10 doesn’t seem like much, but the plugin is priced at $77, meaning that’s almost 15% in savings.
Finally, they finish with an actionable CTA – click the next button and complete your purchase.
“The best abandoned cart email I’ve ever received is from Asos,” says Karan Bhatt of Best Web Hosting. “No doubt, it’s a very popular brand.
Actually, I was looking for a shirt on Asos and I added a great one in the cart, but unfortunately forgot about it. After a few hours, I got an abandoned email from Asos, which was so amazing that I couldn’t resist buying it.
In the email, they were showing the image of the shirt, I added in cart along with clear pricing (which was discounted), call to actions, beneath that they were showing that they offer free delivery and easy returns and no other distracting options.
What I loved most is they were conveying the most important things about the product i.e. name, image pricing, and other perks like free shipping.
Showing so many things like related products or links to other categories can really reduce the effectiveness of such emails, as the person has already made his/her product choice and just needs a simple reminder for checking out.”
Editor’s note: Struggling to identify which days of the week have the most purchases and which channels bring visitors that actually buy? This Google Analytics Ecommerce Sales dashboard can help you answer these questions by analyzing which factors lead to sales for your online shop.
“Here is one of the standard abandoned cart email examples that we send when a customer abandons their shopping cart on Acowebs,” says Rithesh Raghavan of Acowebs. “We believe this abandoned cart email works well because:
Hey (First name),
You came so close to purchasing the best WooCommerce Products Addons plugin currently available in the market. Not sure, what made you move away from this but we just wanted to ensure that you don’t regret this decision – so we have loaded your cart with a special 10% discount!
Purchase through this link and get a 10% special discount!
Grab this opportunity now and enhance your conversion rates with this proven plugin used by more than 35,000 happy customers and rated with a 5-star review.
Check out the features of the best WooCommerce Product Addons plugin and compare for yourself!
If you still have any queries or need any kind of technical support, our team is here to assist you 24×7. Click on the link below to contact our customer support team. Or you can send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.”
“Because they offer such a vast array of different colors of their shoes, they went for not only presenting your item left in the cart, but also some suggestions for further purchases,” says Michał Suski of Surfer SEO.
“I think this abandoned cart email example works just because there’s such a tremendous selection of items that it’s easy to miss one or two. What’s more, Vans didn’t use the word instead in their email. They just showed me some pairs with a note, ‘You might also like these.’ Needless to say, it really did work on me, as I missed some of the shoes that, ultimately, proved to be the ones I bought.”
Now, Bombtech Golf is in an incredibly competitive niche that includes major corporations – like PGA and Callaway Golf. They use their competitors’ advantage (their team size, budget, etc.) to their disadvantage.
PGA would never send an email with their CEO’s signature. But, Bombtech Golf can. 😉
When they add scarcity on top of this more human approach, I suspect this email converts extremely well.
One of the dangers of an abandoned cart email campaign is that you can accidentally train your most loyal customers to not buy right away and to just wait an hour or two for that sweet discount email.
This abandoned cart email from Tipsy Elves is a great example of how to write an effective abandoned cart email without using a discount as an incentive.
They simply lead with a compelling subject line- “forgot something?” and then show the product that I abandoned in my cart – in this case, a gingerbread man onesie – along with a CTA button.
Just like the Tipsy Elves above, this email from Bombas is another great example of a well-designed abandoned cart email that reminds me of what I was looking at but doesn’t include a discount.
They take it one step further by reminding shoppers about their mission. For every pair of socks that someone purchases, they donate a pair to someone in need.
The best abandoned cart email ever written won’t convert every shopper into a paying customer. So, using your abandoned cart email sequence to directly ask for feedback is smart.
In this example, 80sTees.com uses a more human approach and offers a discount code to convert some shoppers. But, they are also collecting valuable customer feedback, which they can use to improve their email campaigns as well as their overall marketing strategy.
Confession, I’ve been subscribed to the Shinesty email list for at least 4 years. They know who their ideal customer is, aren’t afraid to push it right to the edge, and their email copywriting reflects this.
For example, they give a standard discount like most eCommerce brands.
However, they take it a step further and actually acknowledge that this is an abandoned cart email publicly. This can go a long way in building trust.
In sum, if you are a B2C eCommerce brand and you don’t have at least one abandoned cart email – or ideally an entire workflow – will almost certainly bump up your sales numbers.
However, the difference between the brands with abandoned cart workflows that convert above 20% and those that just bring in a few sales randomly is that the first know who their customers are and address the reason(s) why they don’t buy right in their email copy.
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