Business solutions

Best abandoned cart emails strategies to get back customers

22 min read
Best abandoned cart emails strategies to get back customers

About 70% of shoppers don’t finish their purchases, causing merchants to lose up to one-third of their potential revenues. Sounds frustrating, doesn’t it? Well, keep your chin up. Things aren’t all that bad. 

Although many people fail to check out, you can win their favour back. The statistics show that sellers can return about 50% of almost-lost shoppers by sending abandoned cart emails.  

In the article, you’ll find out how to create revenue-generating messages to increase your bottom line.

Abandoned cart emails explained
Abandoned cart emails explained

An abandoned cart email is a message directed to customers who have placed items to their shopping baskets and left without buying. Unfortunately, people often fail to snap up. Three of four shoppers are likely to leave part-way through checkout. Someone does it for a good reason such as costly shipping or lack of payment options while others don’t even have purchasing intent. And abandoned cart emails are among the best practices to redeem lost clients.

First off, baskets recovery messages are very effective. And that isn’t just an idle promise but a statistically proven fact. According to the Moosend research, abandoned basket emails have a high open-rate – 45% if to be precise. When comparing with other types of emails, they provide an excellent return on investments. 

Another benefit of the abandoned basket emails is that they’re all automated. You don’t need to work on each one spinning your wheels. Set up an email campaign and see your revenue recover. There are lots of email marketing platforms: MailChimp, SendPulse, HubSpot, Sendinblue and similar services. They are equipped with ready-made templates and layouts that can be adjusted to any situation. You may address the recipient by their name, include your store logo and do whatever you’d like to grab your clients’ attention. 

The basic structure of the abandoned cart email is a child’s play, and it comes down to this: 

  • a catchy subject line such as “You left something in your cart” or “Oh my! Don’t let it slip away”;
  • intro mentioning that a buyer left some items in their shopping cart, and you kindly saved them;
  • a list of abandoned items;
  • an incentive to make a client knock at your door again (discount, free shipping, etc.);  
  • call to action (CTA) button such as “Proceed to the checkout” or “Visit your cart”;
  • a few testimonials or reviews to tempt buyers to snoop up the left products; 
  • closing text (links to your social media, for instance). 

Now when you know the abandoned cart email definition, let’s see why people fail to finish their purchases in the first place.

Why do customers abandon their shopping carts
Why do customers abandon their shopping carts

You may get mad or depressed about customers who don’t check out, or you can find out the actual causes of their unwillingness to buy and fix them. People leave for different reasons. Shoppers can be distracted by external factors or online ads. Then they might forget about the items added to the cart or consider them not worth buying. 

You aren’t omnipotent to eliminate all sorts of distractions or lure people into purchasing from you if they are just browsing or comparing prices. But you can iron real problems out, thereby minimising the number of the shopping cart abandonment cases. 

Here are the most common reasons you can do something about:

High shipping prices and hidden costs

If you can’t make shipping free, consider reducing the price by choosing a cheaper courier service. Extra payments such as taxes may also irritate and frustrate customers, especially if they find out about them at the checkout stage. Unless you can get rid of them, bundle the extra payments into a total price.

Need to create an account

The more data you obtain, the better you target your potential customers. But people mostly turn thumbs down on signing up especially if they’re first-time buyers. Enable shoppers to make use of a guest checkout. Still, you can request their email addresses and phone numbers.

Tedious checkout process

This reason is similar to the previous one. Even if you don’t ask your clients to sign up but still demand them to fill in zillions of unnecessary forms, you’re killing your leads. Make your checkout form as simple as possible, asking to provide a full name, email, phone number, shipping and payment details.

Slow website speed

Considering such an abundance of online stores, shoppers are spoilt for choice, and they won’t tolerate site errors, slow load time and crashes. They’ll switch over to another store momentarily. That’s why it’s crucial to test your site to bring out any issues and eliminate them. Check how fast your pages are loading at Google Pagespeed Insights. 

And don’t disregard the importance of optimising your store for mobile devices. More than 80% of smartphone users abandon their shopping carts. An unfriendly interface and terrible loading speed mainly account for that. Test your site for mobile-friendliness by this link and read more on how to improve it in this article.

Lack of return policy, or it’s very confusing

The generous return policy would double or even triple your conversion rate. Hard to believe? Over 60% of buyers say that they’d purchase more frequently and spend more if return conditions work for them.

Limited number of payment methods

Most customers don’t want to fill in their card numbers, CVV codes and other details and then wait for a 3D Secure confirmation. They vouch for one-click payments such as Apple Pay or Google Pay. Don’t take that opportunity away from them. With modern payment providers, you can easily accommodate numerous billing methods. Add Tranzzo to your website and enjoy all the trending payment tools.

Bank card declined

When working with a reliable payment company, you won’t have this problem unless there are issues on your client’s side. In that case, a customer can contact their bank or a payment provider to determine why the card was declined. Tranzzo always explains to shoppers why the transaction failed if they reach a support team.

reasons for shopping cart

How to find out what exactly makes your customers run away from your store? Look at the following tactics: 

  • Heat maps. By using such services as CrazzyEgg, Matamo, Open Web Analytics or similar, you can see your website’s fields that cause the drop-off rate. The heatmap feature will show you where your customers click and where they don’t, where they leave, how far they scroll down and what areas bewilder them a lot. That data will help you optimise your web pages to finesse your customers’ shopping experience. 
  • Google Analytics. It is a must-have tool to observe your clients’ behaviour, including the number of visitors who abandon their shopping baskets. Free of charge platform will give you the data needed to crank your business performance up and chase down your cart abandoners.    
  • Research. Leverage surveys to learn about your clients’ preferences, needs and complaints. You can set up triggered emails sent to users who left without buying or ask your loyal customers about what kind of improvements they’re expecting. Read more about how to get clients’ feedback in the article by the link

When knowing what makes users run away without completing the purchase, do whatever it takes to rehabilitate your shop. It’s hardly feasible to reduce the number of abandoned shopping carts to nothing. But it is in your power to minimise them. And well-crafted emails coupled with improvements within your store will help you convert the lost shoppers.

7 Ingredients of the most effective abandoned cart emails

To come up with emails that won’t go to spam, keep the following components of a great message in mind.

Catchy subject line

Catchy subject

Subject line matters. Unless you grab the customer’s attention with the first line, you are doomed to fail. A user will ignore your email, and after a few unopened letters, all your emails will be directed to spam. We bet it isn’t what you want for your business.

When writing a subject line, make it short, interesting, funny, urgent or intriguing. Here are some great examples of catchy lines: 

Hey! We picked these for you

Don’t walk away 

You forgot something. Come and grab it

Come back! Don’t be a chicken 

Your air humidifier is waiting for you 

Don’t make me upset and finish your shopping 

You can always go for something simple: “You left something in your cart” or “We saved these items for you”.  

People love discounts and special offers. If you can provide some bonuses, mention that in your subject line. And set some time limits to induce buyers to empty their carts faster. Fear of missing out can work wonders for your business.  

Empty your cart with 15% off

25% off on your entire order for 25 hours only 

Make avail of free shipping today only 

You deserve the best. Get a 15% discount today 

Last chance to scoop up your left items. Hurry! 

7 hours only to get 25% off on your order. Ready, set, go!

Email marketing platforms enable merchants to send customised messages to the right people at the right time. But you can always add even more of a personal touch to your emails. Address your customers by their names and be specific in your message. Here are a couple of examples:  

Hey, Jane! You forgot your favourite leather pants in the cart 

Rachel, your cart is curious to know where you are

So, your phone doesn’t need that awesome silicon case? 

Your subject line is a pitch! Fine-tune it until it’s perfect. After all, the email that never gets opened makes no sense.

Clear-cut call to action (CTA)

An email CTA is a short message designed to encourage a person to finish their purchase. It’s usually a noticeable button that leads back to the shopping cart.“Noticeable” is the one that isn’t hidden at the bottom of the page and differs from the text written in the email.

When asking for a prompt response from a customer, be nice. Don’t force a recipient to take action but kindly offer to resume the order. Avoid such words as “buy”, “purchase” or “pay”. They aren’t taboo, of course, but they push people to do what they might not be ready to do at the moment. 

Write something to encourage shoppers to take the next step: 

Go to cart to view more
Return to cart
Check left items
Get your [product name] 
Redeem your cart

The copy that has the vibe

Copywriting is the key to your almost-lost customers' hearts. Depending on the message you write, you can redeem abandoned shoppers or make them throw your email to spam. 

The copy should be clear, catchy and compelling. After all, you want to stand out in a cluttered inbox. 

No matter what writing style you choose (funny, formal, casual), use a friendly tone of voice and avoid unnecessary details. Write with these points in mind:

  • a customer added something to their cart; 
  • they left it; 
  • they should come back and finish the purchase.

Left products

You should showcase what your client left in the cart. Provide the name of the item with its price and a picture. Sounds obvious, right? But merchants who overlook this point are losing their potential revenues.

A user might not remember what exactly they were looking for in your store. And when they open your email lacking that essential data, the chances are it’ll be directed to the spam box or deleted. Anyway, you’ll fail to convert the lost client.

Noticeable graphics


The email design aims to catch your customer’s eye in the first place. People are unlikely to read your enticing copy if the graphics aren’t eye-catching. The rule of thumb is: CTA, subject line and the whole message, in general, can convert the almost-lost shoppers, but visuals are crucial to make them notice your email. 

Let’s see how to design a genuinely head-turning email: 

  • Say “no” to stock photos. Even though they’re beautiful and of high quality, they are impersonal. Instead, use them as the basis for your own graphics without producing pictures yourself. You can make avail of such services as Crello, Canva, Pablo, PicMonkey and others. 
  • Opt for dynamic design. It is more powerful than the static one and can add the needed spark to your email. Try animated gifs, slideshow, short videos and see how they work for your conversion rate. 
  • Put a premium on choosing colours. If you have brand colours, jazz your email up with them. You can also make a CAT button yellow, orange, green or red. These are the colours that generate conversions better than others.

Tempting alternatives


“You don’t want this. Perhaps, you might like that” – stick to that approach to lure people into buying from you. A client may hesitate to buy the item because they aren’t 100% sure about it. Stay ahead of the curve and together with the original product left in the cart showcase similar things that a customer may fall in love with. 

Don’t get us wrong. You shouldn’t offer dust-covered products or those that go with high price tags. Alternatives should be similar to the items your client chose in the first place.

Showcase 2-3 accessories that will nicely complement the left product. You can also offer different colours or patterns of it.

Cart recovery email sequence

Two emails are better than one. Three emails are just perfect for nudging the lost shopper. Don’t limit yourself with one message but consider creating a drip campaign. It is a marketing strategy when letters are sent to the prospects one by one over time. 

Here is how a drip campaign looks like:

Email 1. It’s a reminder sent a few hours after a shopper abandoned their cart.

Email 2. A follow-up letter sent a few days later. 

Email 3. It’s a message that contains a special offer for a client. Send it after a couple of days.

Abandoned cart email: examples


Subject line: Angelina, come place your order! 

Why is it a good email: it has all needed components such as a personal approach, good intro, a list of the abandoned items, a CTA button and a discount. 

Why is it a bad email: the “You May Also Like” section contains irrelevant products – smartphones. The user who was seeking a watch is unlikely to buy a phone.


Subject line: Hey dear, your cart is about to expire…

What’s good about this letter: it is beautifully designed with brand colours. The item is shown with a reduced price. All buttons are clickable in the email, and it has a catchy intro. 

What’s bad about it: the CTA button could be brighter, but still, it goes fine with the whole design.


Mama Jewels

Subject line: Can we help with your order in your cart?

What’s good about the email: it has nice colours pleasant to the eye. The CTA button is persuasive but not too pushy. 

What’s bad about it: the intro is confusing because of the question “We’d love to help with your order?”. What does that mean? They doubt whether they want to be helpful or not. The next sentence is trivial as it is neither interesting nor funny.

mama jewels

Undoubtedly, abandoned cart emails are a powerful tool to help merchants recoup their revenue losses. When developing your email marketing campaign, try various approaches, A/B test different ideas to see what works best for your audience. How do they react to funny messages? How often do they use discounts? How much do personalised letters resonate to your customers? It is essential to find out to increase conversions. 

And don’t disregard the importance of a convenient checkout and hassle-free payment instruments. Add Tranzzo to your site to eliminate one of the most common causes of why people fail to finish their purchases. We offer one-click payments such as Apple Pay, Google Pay and Telegram Pay. If you sell subscriptions to your service, recurring billing will be the very thing for you.

Check our pricing plans, and get in touch with us to find out more about our solutions.