How to Develop an Abandoned Cart Email Sequence that Works

AMZ Seller Financing   •   May 6, 2019

How to Develop an Abandoned Cart Email Sequence

When shopping at a physical store, you may have come across products in sections of the store they do not belong in. That’s because the customer who initially picked that up, changed their mind while shopping.

You’ve noticed the same trend happening in your e-commerce store. A great deal of your potential customers does not complete their orders.

You may have also read that recovering even a fraction of these sales can double or triple your profits. You may have even identified the main reasons for abandoned carts on your website and looked into ways of mitigating that.

As a possible option, you are considering developing an abandoned cart e-mail sequence. However, you may have little or zero idea of how to actually do that.

Worry not. We’re here to help and show you how you can develop an abandoned cart e-mail sequence.

What Is an Abandoned Cart E-mail Sequence?

An abandoned cart e-mail sequence is a series of e-mails that you send your online store visitors who added products to their shopping carts but abandoned them before making the purchase. Statistically, over 70% of all online buyers do that, and their reasons for that vary.

Abandoned cart e-mail sequences are not complicated to create yet they can be extremely effective if properly developed.

How to Develop an Abandoned Cart E-mail Sequence

1. Get the E-mails

There won’t be much sense in creating an abandoned cart e-mail sequence if you have no e-mails to send it to. Therefore, your first step should be establishing a means of collecting e-mails.

There are various ways in which you can do so. One of them is by setting up an Exit-Intent popup. That is a type of popup that will trigger when you are about to exit the tab. You can set one up on platforms such as OptinMonster.

Keep in mind though that your e-commerce store visitors may not necessarily be willing to give away their e-mails. So, it’s a good idea to use an incentive that will encourage them to do so.

A great way to incentivize is by offering a discount. If the potential buyers feel like they will benefit from it, they will be more likely to give you their e-mail.

Alternatively, you can set up an announcement bar at the top of your site offering a discount code in exchange for your potential buyer’s e-mail. Some website templates will have that option built in. However, if yours does not, there are multiple apps and plugins that you can download and customize to fit the style of your website.

2. Choose an E-mail Marketing Platform

In order to send your e-mails, you’ll need to utilize e-mail marketing software. These will allow you to collect e-mails, set up e-mail sequences, design and personalize e-mails, as well as send regular newsletters.

There are numerous services to choose from. All of them offer very similar features though small differences in using them apply. Some of the most popular ones are ConvertKit and Infusionsoft, but there are many more that you can choose from. Some website templates may even offer a built-in means of collecting e-mail addresses and sending e-mails.

However, if you are on a tight budget and are just starting off, MailChimp’s free package can be a great starting point.

If you change your mind later on and would like to switch to a different e-mail marketing platform, you can easily export the e-mails that you have collected and import them into the new tool that you have selected.

3. Develop the E-mails

Once you have selected the platform for your e-mails, it’s the time to start developing your abandoned cart e-mail sequence. Three e-mails are great, but you can develop more if you’d like. However, make sure to provide value in those or consistently sending e-mails that only encourage potential buyers to purchase items they have abandoned can seem spammy.

That’s not something you want. Potential buyers may unsubscribe, and you risk losing e-mails that worked hard to collect. Moreover, e-mail marketing tools do not like to be associated with spammy brands. They can easily block you if display such behavior.

Don’t let that discourage you. With a bit of work, you can develop an effective abandoned cart e-mail sequence that isn’t spammy and brings back lost sales.

Here is a possible way in which you can structure your e-mails:

E-mail #1: 1-4 hours after abandoning the cart. Its aim is to close the sale. Remind your potential buyers that they have items left in their shopping carts and include an easy way for them to access these products. You can mention the period of time in which you’ll hold on to their items.

E-mail #2: Schedule it to go out 1 or 2 days after the cart has been abandoned. Aim it to close the sale and communicate urgency. Remind them that the time for completing their order is running out. You can also offer a discount. It may be a great idea to hint about a special offer in the subject line.

E-mail #3: Send it two days after their cart expires. They may have never completed their purchase, but you still have their e-mail! Which means that you can keep contacting them and sending them information about discounts and special offers. Aim the third e-mail to provide social proof by telling a story of a successful customer. If you have none to share yet, you can use this e-mail to teach them something. This can be a useful hack, a tutorial, or anything that your potential buyers will find interesting and useful.

E-mail #4: Schedule for it to send 4 or 5 days after they’ve abandoned their cart and aim to convert the non-buyers. You can do that by offering a discount to the entire store.

After you send these e-mails, you can resort to sending a regular newsletter. It can be weekly or bi-weekly but, more importantly, aim to send it off at the same time. Once again, make sure the e-mails you send provide value to your customers.

4. Integrate Everything and Test

If you are using different services, you need to connect them so that one of them triggers the other. Since these platforms know what your aim is, they offer easy ways for you to integrate them.

Once that’s done, test your abandoned cart e-mail sequence. The best way to do so is by subscribing to it yourself.

Check for any spelling mistakes, incorrectly aligned images, broken links and similar. You can even compare it to some other e-mails that you receive and see if you can improve something.

Once you’ve made sure that everything is working properly, your abandoned cart e-mail sequence is ready to go. You can launch it and start returning the sales that you have lost.

If you’d like to take your efforts to recover lost sales a step further, check out our tips on how you can make abandoned cart e-mail sequence more effective.

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