Best Practices for a Great Cart Abandonment Email

For an online retailer, shopping cart abandonment is consistently one of the most frustrating issues to contend with. According to Baymard Institute it’s not going away anytime soon: Baymard reports that the average documented online shopping cart abandonment rate is 68.63%

Before you throw in the ecommerce towel, there are a few ways to easily bring those rates down, such as sending out basket abandonment emails and offering multiple payment options. These best practices are highlighted here:

Create an Awesome Card Abandonment Email

First, you’ll need to think about what a successful abandoned cart email entails. In general, these features are: A catchy subject line, personalized introduction, breakdown of the items still in the customer’s cart, a call-to-action, and a product review.

Email content


Timing is essential when it comes to crafting cart abandonment emails. According to SalesCycle’s research into 200 global brands, emails sent within 20 minutes achieved an average 5.2% conversion rate, whereas emails sent more than 24 hours after a basket was abandoned achieved an average 2.6% conversion rate. It’s best to create an email campaign that sends out an abandoned cart reminder at multiple intervals, including immediate, 24 hours, and 48 hours. Don’t goo too crazy, though; cap these emails at 3-4 before notifying the customer the cart has expired.


The subject line is the first step in getting a customer to open an email. Effective subject line copy defines your brand before the email is opened, creates a sense of urgency, and appeals to the excitement of the customer. For example, “Hey, Jessica! You forgot how much you wanted to buy this!” This email is not only personalized, but also reminds the customer of their initial interest that caused them to place the items in their shopping cart in the first place.

In addition to creating an inviting subject line, you’ll also need to make sure that the body of the email follows the voice of your brand while getting the key points across to your customer.  The course the content takes should look like: They’ve left an item in their basket, they liked this particular item enough to put it in their basket, and they should return to their basket to finish purchasing the item(s).

Another great way to lure customers back in is to tempt them with related items. Providing your customers with images of other popular or related items will encourage them to revisit the site, as you just simplified the browsing process for them.

E-commerce shopping cart


The only CTA you really want with a cart abandonment email is for the customer to come back and finish shopping. Common calls to action include: 

  • Claim my item
  • Continue shopping
  • Take me back to my basket
  • Complete my order

Additional Tips

Reduce the number of people who abandon their carts with the following tips:

  • Include photos of the product in your shopping cart
  • Be up-front and clear about shipping costs
  • Offer a guest checkout option
  • Ensure that the navigation between shopping pages and the shopping cart are seamless
  • Offer a money-back guarantee




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