5 Secrets of an Effective Cart Recovery Email Campaign

The average shopping cart abandonment rate is 65.23%. If you run an ecommerce store, leaving these prospects untapped means leaving a lot of money on the table. Shopping cart abandonment email is a powerful tool to increase your conversions and profitability by encouraging these prospects to come back to your site and complete their order, but will serve the purpose only when designed effectively.

Given below are 5 secrets which can make these emails campaigns super effective.


1. Use a Direct But Creative Subject Line

Subject line plays a very important role in determining whether your email gets opened or not, “33% of email recipients open email based on subject line alone”.

The subject line of a cart abandonment email should be crafted in a manner that it clearly lets the recipient know what is in it for them and it should be creative enough to catch their attention. Here is an example from ModCloth.com:

ModCloth clearly lets you know what the email is all about while piquing your interest with creative humor. It is effective because it’s straight and upfront but at the same time it arouses curiosity.


2. Keep Your Tone Friendly

Cart abandonment email is a necessity for every ecommerce business as, “7 out of 10 customers abandon the shopping cart.” But, rather than blatantly saying, “go buy stuff,” you can use this email to show your personality and friendly side. Take a look at this email from Pottery Barn.com:

PotteryBarn has effectively used its preheader space along with the copy of the mail to give its cart recovery email a friendly tone while branding it as a ‘customer service’ email. The recovery email also creates a level of urgency by letting its customers know that the shopping cart is available for a limited time only.

The only thing I wish could have been better is the subject line of the email (Complete your order now!). It looks like they are ordering you instead of encouraging you to complete the purchase.


3. Clearly Tell Them What was Abandoned

Cart abandonment emails offer you an excellent opportunity to reengage lost customers. The ultimate purpose of these emails is to encourage the lost prospect to come back on the site again and complete the transaction which he/she has left hanging in between.

Including a picture of the item is a great way to remind the prospect about that specific item(s) and encourages them to come back and buy the stuff. Take a look at this email from Madewell.com:



The email just includes one sentence of copy before showing an image of the item that is lying in the shopping bag which is a great way to increase conversions. Also, they have given a direct link to the item to make it easier for the prospect to check out and buy the item. Though the email has other call to actions but is nicely structured to highlight the main offer.


4. Create Urgency

Urgency is a great motivator. Adding urgency in your cart abandonment email is a great way to encourage prospects to complete the purchase without further delay. Take a look at this email from Fab.com:


Subject line: We’re still holding the Bacalar Tray Table Red for you. Act fast if you want it.

Fab.com has used a direct and friendly subject line and given it a creative treatment by adding urgency in it forcing you to click through and check the email.

This email has everything from an attention-grabbing subject line, minimum but effective copy and clear call to action. Besides the email includes an image of the reference item along with title and price.

The single but clear and bold call to action in the copy induces the reader to take an action. The retailer hasn’t included any other links in the email to keep away from any distractions. The email also clearly displays Fab’s customer service phone number and email address to build trust and establish a strong customer support approach.


5. Have a Clear Call to Action

The main purpose of a cart abandonment email is to convert a prospect into customer and call to action plays a vital role in doing so. Designing a copy that is visually appealing is important but if your CTA doesn’t stands out on the page people will not take the desired action. Here is an example from ModCloth.com:


ModCloth.com has designed and placed its CTA strategically, just below the image of the item to induce the recipient to take an action. Also, they have used apt CTA text to clearly tell the recipient what they have to do rather than leaving it to “Buy Now.”


While there could be multiple reasons for abandoning shopping carts, retailers as well as marketers are trying to find ways to re-engage these shoppers through recovery email campaigns and motivate them to come back and complete the sale. The ingredients for a good retargeting email includes the above besides using discounts and vouchers to close the sale.




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