This article is part of a larger series on Retail Management.
The average cart abandonment rate is just over 71%. That’s a lot of missed opportunities. And while you can adjust your website, product pages, and checkout process to capture some of those lost sales, you can also recuperate those shoppers after they’ve left your website with abandoned cart emails.
An abandoned cart email is an automated email marketing strategy. The email is triggered when a user adds something to their online shopping cart but doesn’t complete the purchase. The email reminds the user about the item, encouraging them to come back and buy it. Sometimes the emails are sent in a sequence, and sometimes they include incentives.
Let’s look at some cart abandonment email examples for tips when crafting your own.
1. Everlane: Simple, Straightforward Design
This abandoned cart email from apparel brand Everlane is a great straightforward example. Simple design, on-brand aesthetic and voice, and a reminder of how great the product in question is. Everlane doesn’t incentivize this email with any promotions or discounts; instead, it leans into its strong branding.
2. Nomad: Visual Approach
Nomad also takes a simple but more visual approach with big, beautiful product and brand images. It also adds a touch of humor into the copy. The call to action to complete the purchase is clear and easy to find.
3. Alex Mill: Discount Offer
Fashion brand Alex Mill decided to incentivize its abandoned cart purchases. It offers shoppers a 15% discount on their selected items, should they complete the checkout. It also sprinkles in cross-selling tactics, highlighting new arrivals.
4. Perigold: Cross-sell Opportunity
Luxury home goods company Perigold also uses abandoned cart emails to cross-sell other products. It keeps a clean, minimal design that mirrors product pages on its website. The black Shop Now button is below each product, making it easy for shoppers to take the next step.
5. Rudy’s: Free Shipping Offer
Hair care brand Rudy’s adds an incentive to its abandoned cart emails to encourage the sale. It offers each user a unique code to use at checkout so they can get free shipping. According to an Invesp study, 9 out of 10 consumers say free shipping is the top incentive to shop online more.
6. Nanoleaf: Creative Copy
Nanoleaf sells smart light bulbs and other technologically advanced home lighting products. It takes a very creative approach with this abandoned cart email example, using playful brand voice and copy. It also incentivizes with a 10% discount. The email helped the brand effectively recover 30% of abandoned carts.
7. KatKin: Customer Review
Cat food brand KatKin uses lots of color and personality in its abandoned cart email. Included in the email is a 20% discount with clear CTA buttons reiterating that incentive. The email also reminds shoppers of the product benefits and features a customer review as social proof.
8. Liquor Loot: Product Benefits
Liquor Loot (formerly Whisky Loot) heavily leans into reiterating the product benefits in its abandonment email. It lists all of the advantages of its product, reminding users why they were interested in the first place. Beneath the product photo, it also lists some frequently asked questions—along with the answers—to help ease any final hesitations.
9. Ecoslay: Product Quiz
Hair care brand Ecoslay uses its abandoned cart email to try to get shoppers to complete the purchase—or further engage with the brand should they decide they’re not ready to buy yet. Ecoslay has a hair quiz that helps shoppers find the perfect product for them. So, if they were unsure of their purchase, this hair quiz can help. Ecoslay also includes a product photo, pricing, and a clear CTA button.
10. QualityPet: Standard Subject Line
QualityPet uses a standard abandoned cart subject line for its email: “You left these behind!” It’s simple and straightforward, so there are no surprises when the user opens the email. The email itself contains a list of the abandoned products and their prices, as well as a clear CTA button. Beneath the main call to action, QualityPet cross-promotes different products.
11. Girlfriend Collective: Authentic Voice
Sustainable activewear brand Girlfriend Collective has a friendly and approachable brand, which is represented well in its cart abandonment email. The subject line is in the authentic brand voice and also inspires urgency, noting the product may sell out soon. The email itself is easy to read and clean, reiterating the brand values of sustainability and strong ethics. Finally, it shows the product, pricing, and a CTA button.
12. Outerknown: Urgent Appeal
Outerknown opens its cart abandonment email with a big, beautiful brand image and a message stating, “These items are going fast.” This copy inspires a sense of urgency for shoppers, so they may feel pressure to complete their purchase before it’s too late. The email also revisits the brand value of sustainability, lists the products left behind, and provides an easy way to return to the shopping cart and complete the purchase.
Abandoned Cart Email Best Practices
Here are some tips to keep in mind as you can create effective cart abandonment emails or improve the ones you already have.
Remind Shoppers of the Product
Remember to include the name and photo of the product(s) abandoned in the shopper’s cart. It can also be helpful to include pricing information and a link to the product page so they can learn more about it
Offer Free Shipping
Extra shipping costs are a top reason for abandoning carts, so offering free shipping can help capture those lost sales. Consider providing a promo code that offers free shipping for those who return to abandoned carts.
Include a Call to Action
A call to action, or CTA, is when you tell your audience what to do. In an abandoned cart email, this is often a button or hyperlinked text. Typically, you’ll want your CTA to say something like “buy now” or “complete your purchase.” It’s smart to include actionable words in your CTA and keep it short and punchy. Test CTA language and buttons vs hyperlinks to see what inspires more click-throughs.
Personalize Your Emails
You can add a small touch by simply using the shopper’s name in the subject line and/or email copy. Take advantage of information like birthdays, location, and even when you send the email to improve personalization. These small changes have proven to create a significant impact on recovering lost sales. People tend to buy more if they can connect with the brand or product more personally.
Test Subject Lines
You want subject lines to be short, simple, and curiosity-provoking. These types of subject lines tend to be the most effective, but you always want to test different ideas with your own audience. You want to use subject lines that boost open rates and click-through rates (CTRs). You can try subject lines like these:
- 15% off your cart
- $20 off your purchase
- You forgot something!
- Still shopping?
- You’ve left these items behind
Use Abandoned Cart Email Templates
An abandoned cart email template makes the job of creating your automation a lot easier. Rather than starting from scratch, you can use a premade template and customize it to your unique needs. Adjust the fonts and colors, the promotion, and the copy to suit your cart abandonment strategy.
Abandoned Cart Email Examples Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Your abandoned cart email should contain a personal greeting, a quick summary describing the email (e.g., “You left something behind so we saved your cart to help you complete your purchase”), the abandoned products, and a call to action.
An example of an abandoned cart email sequence is when a business creates multiple abandoned cart emails to be sent successively if someone doesn’t complete their purchase. This will often include the first abandoned cart email, as well as second, third, fourth, etc. emails. Typically, each email will be slightly different.
You address an abandoned cart by setting up an automated email to try and recover those lost sales. Remind shoppers of the items in question, offer a call to action, and consider an incentive to inspire the sale.
An abandoned cart flow email is an email part of a sequence sent to users who have added items to their online shopping cart but didn’t complete the purchase. The flow emails are automatically sent at preset times/intervals.
Abandoned cart emails can help you recover lost sales, and they’re important for both established and new retail businesses. The best part is they’re automated, so you don’t need to go in and manually send an email to everyone who didn’t complete a purchase. Use these abandoned cart email examples as inspiration when you build your own.