Do you remember one of the last scenes of Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King that shows Frodo, Gandalf, and Bilbo sailing off into the sunset, leaving their friends behind? Ecommerce merchants feel the same way as they wave goodbye to boatloads of cash in abandoned shopping carts every day.
A tremendously sad reality for online businesses, the average abandoned cart rate for eCommerce is 69.7%. That’s an enormous amount of unrealized revenue. What if you could recover a quarter, or more, of that money? Like a knight in shining armor, abandoned cart emails rescue lost revenue. They are the answer to unfinished transactions online.
An unprecedented study by Klaviyo, “Ecommerce Industry Benchmark Report – Abandoned Carts,” shows eCommerce marketers how these emails recover some of this revenue. We’ll share some of the highlights with you here, as our team is a Klaviyo consulting mega-machine, with over 100 custom klaviyo build-outs so far.
Nurture Your Abandoned Carts
It’s helpful if you change your perception of an abandoned cart to that of a new lead. New leads need nurturing to help them reinforce the buying decision using emotion, information, and social proof. Nurture abandon cart “leads” with timely, personalized emails. The best part is that the open rate for these emails can be as high as 45%, three times the average eCommerce email open rates.
There are many reasons why shoppers leave their carts mid-purchase from shipping issues to checkout friction. In this article, we’re focusing primarily on bringing those shoppers back. To help you tempt your buyers into finishing their purchase, test these five methods.
1. Reminding Shoppers ASAP
The distractions in our lives never end, and it’s probably the biggest reason shoppers leave empty-handed. Like a tap on the shoulder, get their attention with a reminder email soon after the cart becomes inactive.
When is the best time to send it? Preferably, within the first three hours after they abandon their carts. Klaviyo looked at 100 of their top-performing email clients and discovered that 91 of them sent their emails within 5 hours after a shopper left her cart. Keeping top of mind is the purpose, and you should test for the optimal time for your customers to receive the first reminder.
2. Nudging Without Bothering
Now that you know to send your reminder email within the first 5 hours, how many should you send? Email frequency walks a tightrope between being helpful and spamming. Klaviyo researched the frequency of reminder emails and their effect on recovery and response rates.
Here is a chart of their results:
Klaviyo’s report used data from 100 top performers. Only 12 of the companies sent out more than five abandoned cart emails while half sent only two. The sweet spot of recovering the majority of carts was three emails. However, there is a positive return for each email in the series. Most surprising (in Klaviyo’s study) is that email #7 had double the Average Return Per Recipient (RPR) over email #6.
With so much money on the table, it’s worth your time to remind your distracted shoppers at least three to five times.
3. Use Friendly Reminder Subject Lines
Every email needs a killer subject line. As the headline in the newspaper, it’s what makes people stop and take a look. However, with an abandoned cart email, you don’t have to be witty or shocking to get it opened.
Stick to the point. Think of this message like a helpful store clerk reminding a shopper that she forgot something.
Don’t use a complicated subject line like, “Your favorite dress is almost sold out! Get 10% off, plus you’ll love these cute items!” Opt for simplicity, personalize it, and ask a question like, “Rebecca, did you forget something?”
Get personal, mention the shopper’s name, and keep to one specific message. Use the body of your email to add details if necessary.
4. Overcoming Objections Win Sales
There are mountains of data regarding why people abandon their carts. Losing interest in your products is an insignificant factor in cart abandonment. There are two main reasons people leave their carts. Number one is shipping costs, and number two is discount code issues.
Overcome objections by making an offer that has perceived value for the customer. Don’t drop the price right away as it is usually not the primary objection. A discount coupon is the most obvious, but there are many other options limited only by your team’s creativity.
There are three pricing incentives you can offer, a percentage discount, a dollar-based discount, and free shipping. Klaviyo’s data showed that dollar-based discounts brought in the highest RPR while free-shipping generated the highest open rates.
Persistence and consistency are critical factors in recovering lost revenue. The best advice is to keep sending and track your results.
5. Segmentation and Personalization Boost Conversions
Segmentation is critical to getting the right message to the right people. First-time shoppers may need encouragement by way of social proof. Frequent or VIP shoppers need to be handled differently to appeal to their unique needs.
No matter what type of shopper you’re contacting, the message must be personal, starting with their names. Offer an incentive that motivates them based on their browsing or shopping history.
Personalizations should address the separate needs of first-time buyers and returning visitors. Some information to add in the body include:
- Personalized product recommendations
- Personalized discounts
- Cart content
Don’t forget, always add a call to action in the email. Make it simple for them to finish the sale.
Be Consistent and Test Everything
Personalized abandoned cart emails account for over 28% of all ecommerce revenue. With an open rate of almost five times more than newsletters, your company can recover a significant amount of abandoned revenue. It’s low hanging fruit.
As with everything in digital marketing and eCommerce, data is critical for the success of your cart abandonment series. Test everything and be meticulous about tracking your results. Be persistent and send at least five emails.
If you’re starting the first series, remember to:
- Personalize your headlines and body copy
- Use a dollar-based discount, and
- Send the first email between 1 and 5 hours
From there, you can test other variations.
Abandoned cart emails generate significant revenue. During Klaviyo’s three-month analysis period, these emails recovered more than $60 million in lost revenue.
If your company hasn’t yet tapped the potential, talk to our Klaviyo Experts, and we will provide a personalized evaluation of your reminder program, up-sell flows, and help you design a highly monetizing e-mail marketing automation program; custom-branded, fully tuned, and turnkey. Shoot us a contact note, and we'll handle the rest.