How To Earn $350,000 in 5 Months with Abandoned Cart Email Marketing

Written by Franco Varriano.

In this post, we’ll explore how sending two emails can recapture lost customers, stop cart abandonment, and improve conversion rates. This will demonstrate the power of abandon cart email marketing, and show you how you can easily implement them in your store immediately.

We went ahead and created a detailed case study or a “teardown” of real-world emails used by a currently trading ecommerce store. All the lessons in this post are based on real-life results and not just theory.

This email teardown focuses on how a party supplies business, an industry well known for its seasonal variation, was able to use abandoned cart emails to reclaim $350,000 over 5 months.

This is money that would have been lost if they hadn’t invested in this automated email campaign. Let’s jump in.

What exactly is Shopping Cart Abandonment and How Is It Hurting Your Business?

You spent all your marketing dollars, time, sweat, and blood in acquiring a prospect for your store. They come to your ecommerce store, find a product they want, add it to their shopping cart, begin the checkout process and then…

They click away. They don’t follow through with the checkout.

A sale lost.

This is known in the industry as “Abandon Cart”. The Baymard Institute compared 37 different studies and found that on average nearly 70% of online shoppers abandon cart.

70%. That means only 3 out of 10 visitors on your store who add an item to basket actually complete the checkout process, if you’re lucky enough to achieve average results.

When you think about that, that’s an appalling amount of people who come to your website with the intent to buy and click away.

Could it be that they click away because they were only window shopping? Well, let’s look at the data. In the same article above, the Baymard Institute conducted a study on why shoppers abandon cart. They found that 59% of cart abandoners said they did it for the reason of “I was just browsing / not ready to buy”.

This still leaves a significant number of shoppers who abandoned cart for reasons that had nothing to do with window shopping.

What sort of reasons? Here are the top 5, in order, once you segment out the window shoppers:

  1. Extra costs (shipping costs or taxes) were too high
  2. The website wanted them to create an account
  3. The checkout process was too long or complicated
  4. They couldn’t see or calculate the total cost of the order up front
  5. The website crashed

These are all problems to be fixed up front, but they are also all problems that can be fixed by sending the shopper a gentle reminder, which we in the industry call an Abandoned Cart Email.

This is a reminder email, or a sequence of follow-up emails, which you send to the shoppers who abandoned their cart reminding them of the items they have left in their cart, and inviting them to finish the checkout process.

In addition to these key pieces of information, stores like to include:

  • An offer for free shipping, to handle the objection of shipping costs being too high
  • A reason to take action now, such as their shopping cart is about to expire, or a time-limited discount code
  • Customer reviews of items they’re interested in, as a form of social proof to encourage the sale
  • A range of similar products, in case they weren’t happy with what was in their cart, or to encourage them to buy more
  • Contact details in case something went wrong when they were trying to make their order

Though they may seem pretty simple, abandoned cart emails are extremely effective. So effective that a seasonal party supplies business recouped $350,000 over 5 months with one.

Your efforts may not yield the exact same results, but think about it: if you can lower your abandoned cart rate by a small amount, it could still yield serious results. Let’s say your site brings in 100,000 visitors per month, whose average order value is $200. Your visitor-to-sale conversion rate is 0.42%. If you increase your conversion rate by 0.5%, you’d add an extra $100,000 of cash each month. A little bit goes a long way, and you can easily achieve this conversion increase just by sending an automated email.

So, how do you do it?

The Email Teardown

Instead of showing you the theory behind how to write an abandoned cart email, we decided to show you a real-life teardown of a successful abandon cart campaign.

The ecommerce store in question joined in April 2017 and sold party supplies.

As anyone in the events industry can tell you, party supplies are a seasonal business. People party during the summer, and hibernate during the winter.

So, when summer hits, an events business needs to make as much money as possible to survive the lean months.

This store was able to do just that with

They put together and implemented an abandon cart email series just before June and were able to recover a whopping $350,000 in 5 months with 2 emails.

Yes, you read that right: An average $70,000 extra revenue per month from simply marketing to “lost customers”.

How did they do that?

Well, checkout the case study and our analysis below. It includes some more background, a real-life teardown of their emails, and some recommendations on what they could do better (P.S We recommend viewing this in full-screen mode):

Key Takeaways

The store did a great job with their abandon cart emails, but could have done better. Here’s what they did great in:

  • Funny and on brand copy
  • On brand design increases engagement
  • Catchy subject lines
  • A/B Testing to find winning emails
  • Items the customer put in cart in email
  • Support link in the email in case abandon cart happened for technical reasons.

And here’s what they could have improved:

  • No call to action button at bottom of email
  • Product photos not too clear
  • Use of long product titles. They could change to shortened titles for mobile devices.

2 emails. Sometimes that’s all it takes. What are you waiting for?

And if you’re one of the thousands of merchants who are already using Rare’s Smart Email Marketing software and want to see how our Customer Success Team can work with your brand to grow your revenue – feel free to book a call at your convenience here.

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