As an eCommerce entrepreneur, there’s a lot to think about these days. Product photos, customer reviews, live chat, conversion optimization, AdWords, Facebook ads, retargeting, fulfillment, shipping delays, and so on, and so on. There’s only so many hours in a day so it’s important to focus on the areas that are really going to push the needle and boost revenue.
I’m about to give you one more thing to consider. But hey, at least what I’m about to show you has a direct effect on your bottom line. And you can get it done by the end of today.
I run CartHook.com, an abandoned cart solution that automatically emails visitors who start, but don’t finish your checkout process.
Today, I’m very happy to announce our integration with the outstanding team at LemonStand, the great platform they’ve built, and the ambitious merchants growing their businesses on the LemonStand platform.
To announce our integration, I figured the best thing I can possibly do is show you exactly how to set up a successful abandoned cart campaign.
Our customers recover an average of 22% of their abandoned carts and increase revenue by an average of 9%.
Here’s how they do it.
First, let’s define “Abandoned Cart Email Campaign”
Let’s get on the same page on this. When I talk about an “Abandoned Cart,” I’m referring to a visitor to your site that begins the checkout process but doesn’t complete it. The key elements are:
- The visitor added an item to your shopping cart
- The visitor entered their email address on the checkout page
- The visitor did NOT complete the purchase
OK, now that we’re all talking about the same thing, let’s get started.
3 Steps to a Killer Abandoned Cart Campaign
Step 1: Capture the Email
The most important aspect to a successful abandoned cart campaign is maximizing the number of “reachable” abandoned carts. In other words, you need the visitor’s email address if you want to send them an email.
Seems obvious enough, but when and where in the checkout process you capture the email makes a huge difference.
Fortunately, LemonStand has the email field really early in the checkout process. And with CartHook’s ability to capture the email as soon as it’s typed in the field, you’re in good shape on this front. However, do your due diligence here and ensure your country’s email marketing laws allow this practice.
Step 2: Get the Timing Right
OK, now you’ve got the email address. Now let’s start emailing! Well, not really. First let’s give the visitor a chance to actually buy something. That’s obviously the preferred path.
That’s why we have a 60-minute countdown. That gives the visitor 60 minutes from the time we capture the email. If they complete the purchase in that time, they’re considered a normal checkout and no emails need to go out at all.
However, if they don’t complete the purchase within 60 minutes, that’s when they’ll be considered “Abandoned,” which then triggers the email campaign.
Email One – 60 Minutes After Abandonment
- The first email is always the most effective.
- Why 60 minutes? Because chances are, the visitor still has your site open in a browser window.
- Think about how you act on the web. I don’t know about you, but I always have like 30 Chrome windows open. But which one do I always go back to? Yup, just like you and just like the visitor who abandoned your site, I always go back to my inbox. That’s why you want to get the first email in the inbox pretty quickly after abandonment.
- We’ve found that 60 minutes performs really well for the first email.
Email Two – 24 Hours After Abandonment
- You didn’t think we were just gonna send one email, did you? As in all things in life, you have to follow up!
- But when?
- Think about how your visitors shop online. Usually, they shop at the same time of day. For example, my wife chases after our two little girls all day. So when does she catch up on email and shop online? Right around 8:30pm after the kids go to sleep. So if my wife is shopping on your site and abandons a cart at 8:30pm, when do you think a good time to email her would be? That’s right, EXACTLY 24 hours later, at 8:30pm the next day.
- We’ve found that for the second email, 24 hours is the right timing.
Email Three – 5 Days After Abandonment
- The timing is a bit less important on email three, so we recommend anywhere between 3 to 7 days after abandonment.
- It depends on your audience, their demographic, the nature of your product, if you discount, and so on.
- This is the equivalent of a hail mary pass. Well, maybe not that dramatic, but it is your last shot at this conversion.
- We don’t encourage discounting in your abandoned cart campaign, but if you were going to discount, the third email is where you want to do it.
- What we do encourage, is ratcheting up the pressure on this email. Use scarcity and time sensitivity in your copy to encourage action.
Email one is the most effective, but we still see 40% of conversions happen on emails two and three, so you’ve gotta make it a real campaign and not just a single email.
The whole thing looks like this incredibly sophisticated visual I created:
Step 3: Get the Copy and Tone Right
Abandoned cart emails have one goal: to get the visitor back to your site to finish the purchase.
But there’s definitely a right way and a wrong way to do it. The right way to think about this is that it’s a customer service opportunity, not a sales opportunity.
You want to be helpful above all. Someone who went so far into your checkout process that they actually typed in their email on the checkout page, that’s someone who is genuinely interested in buying.
So it’s less about convincing them they should buy, and much more about addressing the possible questions and concerns they might have that led them to abandon your site.
Phrases you want to use are:
- “How can we help”
- “Reply directly to this email with questions”
- “Here’s our phone number”
- “Do you have any questions”
- And so on…
You do want to slowly bring up the pressure from one email to the next, but the overall tone of the emails is helpful!
One more thing on copy and tone. This is not a newsletter, this is not all about your brand and your amazing blog. These emails should be entirely focused on the transaction that was abandoned.
So, very few images, as little copy as is needed to get the job done, and definitely no CTAs other than the big “Complete Your Order” button that brings people back to your site.
Here’s an example from a customer of ours. Real simple, real straightforward, and really effective:
Step 4: Get Up and Running
Let’s not pretend like I’m not biased. I want you to use CartHook. But whether you choose CartHook or not, every eCommerce store should have an abandoned cart email campaign set up and running at all times.
You work really hard to get people to your store, provide them the info they need, and convince them to buy your products. You work every day to improve your conversion rate and to minimize your cart abandonment, but no matter what you do, some people are still going to abandon your checkout.
For that, you should use a cart abandonment email campaign to drive as many of them back to your site as possible.
With shopping cart abandonment rates averaging nearly 70%, this is an area that you simply cannot afford to ignore.