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How to Create Dynamic Abandoned Cart Emails + 8 Examples

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According to Shopify, a whopping 67% of online shopping carts are abandoned before the customer completes the sale.

That means you’re missing out on nearly two-thirds of your potential revenue, two-thirds of customers, and two-thirds of your business’s growth.

Like, whoa… 

That’s a whole lotta moola getting left behind. 

So, what can you do about it?

This article is going to offer a solution in the form of cart abandonment emails. Why? 

Because not only do these types of emails have a purchase rate about 19 percent higher than promotional email campaigns but sending a second email as part of your cart abandonment email sequence shows a 54% on top of that. 

That sounds a lot better than losing two-thirds of your sales, amiright? 

Here’s what we’ll cover today: 

  • Why people abandoning their carts is completely normal
  • Eight examples of shopping cart abandonment emails to inspire you
  • How to design a dynamic abandoned shopping Cart email sequence


Consumer’s Abandoning Their Online Cart is Completely Normal 

It’s true that a large chunk of people abandoned their carts. 

What’s good to note is that this is generally all part of their experience with you and tends to be a regular practice for even customers with high AOV. 

Case in point, how many times have you added to your Amazon cart only to leave it there for a week before deciding what to do about it? (No, I’m not speaking from personal experience or anything...).

You likely do something like this all the time. 

And considering the average abandoned cart rate across all industries is around 75 percent, it’s clear this is done primarily out of consumer’s browsing habits rather than an outright hatred of your checkout process. 

Obviously, any spike in abandonment rate is something to take seriously and monitor regularly, but just keep in mind that people leaving their cart before checking out is a normal part of the online shopping experience.

Like, window shopping, as it were.  

But don’t worry. 

There are ways to get them back, and it all starts with a triggered abandoned cart email. 

To help you get started, here is a simple template you can use for your eCommerce emails.

A Basic Abandoned Cart Email Template to Help You Get Started

There’s more than one way to put your abandoned cart emails together, and if you’re doing it right, you should have a few in an automated sequence to get the most bang for your buck.

With that said, here is how to write an abandoned cart email and an easy-to-follow template: 

Before the email:

  • Make sure the “from” sender has an easy to recognize name (no info@ email addresses here)
  • Use the subject line to grab attention; test emojis here too
  • Use the preview text to mention they have something in their cart 

In the email: 

Your email format can change for each email in your sequence. So one may be more image-heavy while another may be copy only. 

Later on, we’ll be going over email examples to give you ideas of content and format, but generally speaking, abandoned cart emails are a mix-and-match of these items below:

  • Use some intro copy to mention items in their cart 
  • Have a CTA that takes them back to their cart 
  • Place images in the email of what’s still sitting in their cart (optional)
  • Offer a discount to snag the sale (optional)
  • Include testimonials, customer reviews, or other types of social proof (optional)

After the email: 

You should have a few emails in your sequence that builds on the first one. It may look a little something like this: 

  • Email 1: Yo, your cart is missing you. 
  • Email 2: The items in your cart are selling out fast! 
  • Email 3: Still interested? (discount inside)

That’s the pretty basic idea of it, but we'll be going into more detail about this a little later on.

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8 Best Shopping Cart Abandoned Email Template Examples 

We love emails. It’s sort of our bread and butter here at Sendlane. 

Below are some of the best examples we’ve found for abandoned cart emails. 

1. Give Them a Compliment 

abandoned-cart-email


What we love about this email

That headline! “You have great taste.” (*gush*)

It’s just a few words designed to make people feel good about their tastes and choices. 

Everlane includes the photo of the product and the CTA, “Take another look” is also a nice touch to keep people moving in a single direction: 

Back to their cart — and hopefully, through the checkout. 

What you can take away from this email

Don’t be afraid to schmooze your customer’s a bit. 

The extra level of friendliness adds character to your brand and can help make you more likable. Plus, when you’re making people feel good about their choices and tastes, it can make it that much easier for them to trust you and ultimately purchase from you. 

2. Offer Them a Discount 

abandoned-cart-email-discount


What we love about this email

Even though Thrive has three CTAs here, they are in great placements:

Above the fold, under the image, and near the bottom with a different CTA. 

What’s great about the last CTA button is it offers a discount — which is an excellent incentive for those on the fence. Right above that button is a bit of copy, which drills home how money is wasted when people forget to use coupons that could have given them “even steeper discounts.” 

It kind of makes you go, “Oh yeah, that’s true. Let’s save some money since I’m going to buy that soon anyway.” Then they click and convert, presumably. 

It’s subtle, but that’s why it’s great. 

What you can take away from this email

You can take advantage of prime real estate in your emails for the CTA. And don’t be afraid to change up the copy on the buttons. You may find one button converts better than the others, too. 

Lastly, decide on whether you want to offer a discount. 

It’s not always ideal, but if it converts more people and you give them a great experience, then it pays off in the long run. 

3. Be Candid, but Fun 

abandoned-cart-email-personality


What we love about this email

This email from Glossier is short, but it’s kind of fun, thanks to the copy they used. The email asks the silly question, “If you add things to an online shopping bag, but on one’s around to check out… does it make a sound?”

Then it follows up with, “No. But it does trigger this email.” 

It’s plucky and not the least bit rude. 

The photo is also well placed because the girl in the picture has her eyes looking up, which naturally draws your eyes upwards to the copy. 

What you can take away from this email

You can have fun with your cart abandonment email copy. There aren’t many words in this email from Glossier, but there doesn’t need to be. The point of the email is to get people back to their cart, and this email meets that goal. 

You can add some personality to your emails too. If your images can do some of the heavy lifting, then by all means let them do a bit of the selling or nudging for you. 

4. Allow Them to Talk with Someone IRL

abandoned-cart-email-example

What we love about this email

This email from Ghurka ticks the boxes in all the right places. 

It has personalization with the person’s name, it uses the copy to give a bit of urgency, it uses an image of the item left in the cart, and has a simple, colorful CTA. 

You’ll notice the product itself is a high-end product with a hefty price tag. And as you would imagine, that price tag likely causes some hesitation around purchasing. 

To counteract that resistance, they offered the contact a chance to call and speak with a real person to chat about their potential purchase. 

What you can take away from this email

While you may not be able to offer the chance to talk over the phone with your purchases, there may be areas you could tuck into your emails that give your email contacts an opportunity to reach out to use a chatbot to have questions answered or chat with a support rep. 

It’s not always an option, but it could be worth the test run to see if that improves your sales and revenue, especially during the peak holiday season. 

5. Show them what else you have to offer 

abandoned-cart-email-personalization


What we love about this email

Sometimes, the thing that you added to your cart but left there isn’t the thing you’ll end up buying. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve added various shoes and yoga pants to my Nike cart only to buy something totally different.

Well, this email from Loeffler seems to know that we humans can be a bit fickle like that, which is why it’s a lovely example of what you can do with cart abandonment emails.

The copy speaks to how there’s something left in the cart, but below that, it shows the other options available to purchase (New arrivals, Staff Picks, etc.). That gives people the chance to get back to the store and take another look around. 

While they may not end up purchasing the exact thing they left in their cart, it does bring them back and get them thinking about you. 

And they may even end up purchasing something else — which is what we’re going for anyway. 

What you can take away from this email

Giving people a chance to see what else you offer in your store is a great way to get people to click and back into your online store. 

While it may not be the best idea to add this type of email format as your first email, you could add something like this in your sequence that can bring in clicks and help people along their journey with you.

6. Be Unapologetically Yourself

abandoned-cart-email-template


What we love about this email

Chubbies' copy in this example is unlike anything we’ve come across. But the unique voice and tone work for a brand that aspires to be different from the other swim trunk makers out on the market. 

You may not see it well in this email, but the preview text in the upper left part of the email is excellent! It speaks right to both the reader and the writer “forgetful too” when checking out. 

It plays into the “ease” of getting back to the cart but using words like “free,” “teleport,” and so on. It’s daring and different from the average email, which is why it’s on our list.

What you can take away from this email

Being authentically, unapologetically, you may have gotten you in trouble as a kid, but people enjoy relatable and authentic brands. 

It can feel safer to stay in your lane and do what others do when it comes to email copy but don’t be afraid to take liberties and offer your brand’s most authentic self to your audience. 

7. Offer up your playful side

abandoned-cart-email-template

What we love about this email

I’m probably one of the few people (and I’m sure I’m dating myself to admit this) who read this headline and automatically found themselves singing the song this lyric belongs to. 

But that's neither here nor there. 

What is great about this email, aside from it being short, is its playful tone. And for a brand called Nasty Gal, it’s only natural to expect some bold and lively copy. 

This copy pops; you can’t help but feel drawn into the words, and that’s awesome! The format is a bit different from other ones we’ve seen. It’s just large font and some clickable CTAs but it works for them, and it may work for you too.

What you can take away from this email

Playfulness is a part of being human. Your audience has that side to them too, so there is usually room for using a more personal tone from time to time. 

There’s a fine line here that can cause some resistance on you and your team’s end as you try not to be so playful that you tiptoe into being brash. 

My usual rule of thumb is, if you can comfortably say this to a 9-year-old and they giggle rather than run away crying, you’re probably not crossing a line here. 

8. Go completely naked (yes, you read that right)

abandoned-cart-email-simple


What we love about this email

Most people think of abandoned cart emails and think of them full of large CTA buttons, photos, and product images. But this email from ThirdLove breaks all the rules. 

There are no buttons, no brand colors, or images. 

Nope. 

It’s just a stripped-down email with only words — some of which are simply linked to act as the CTAs. It seems so plain, but you’d be surprised just how well these email types can convert for brands. 

Many email eCommerce copywriters tout the power of this email format for driving conversions. 

What you can take away from this email

If you can take the time to plan our visuals and write copy for all your other emails, then putting together this sort of email should be a walk in the park. 

Feel free to offer a discount. Sell prospects on products. Write it like an email to a new acquaintance. And then see what happens. 


How to Design and Create a Dynamic Abandoned Shopping Cart Email Sequence 

We’ve covered some great cart recovery email examples, but that’s just the end result. What about the technical side of setting up and automating an abandoned cart sequence? 

That’s what we’ll cover, and we’ll guide you through how to use our platform to do it. 

Creating new automation is easy. You can follow the walkthrough here

With the new automation set up, click on add trigger, click on your store integration from the pop-up menu. We’ll be choosing our Shopify integration for our example, but there are also WooCommerce and Miva integrations available.  

Scroll down and choose the “Customer Abandoned Checkout” trigger.

sendlane-abandoned-cart-automation


In the new options of the pop-out menu: 

  • Select your store 
  • Set the limit per contact as Once Per Day 
  • Set consider abandoned after 1 hour 
sendlane-abandoned-cart-automation


After that, click on the + button to add your first email to your sequence. You do that by choosing:

  1. Clicking on Send Message 
  2. Click Send Email 
  3. Click Create New Email
sendlane-abandoned-cart-automation-funnel

Next, give that email a name and select the correct Sender Profile. Finally, give your email a subject line, preheader text, and create the email content. 

At the end of this process, your new funnel will look something like this. 

sendlane-abandoned-cart-funnel-example


All of this is just a jumping-off point. You can and likely should add more messages to your sequence. 

You can do that by clicking + button and follow the prompts for your setting up your follow-up email(s) in the abandoned cart workflow. 

When to send abandoned cart emails

sendlane-abandoned-cart-timing-sequence


If you’re wondering how to time the flow of your email, here is an example of the timing sequence from our eBook: The Definitive Guide to Abandoned Cart Emails for eCommerce

//[inject:ad-ebook-abandoned-cart]

In this example, you’ll see there are five emails to the sequence, with each email sent at a different interval: 

  1. 30 min - 24 hours after the cart is abandoned
  2. 2 days after the cart is abandoned
  3. 4 days after the cart is abandoned
  4. 5 days after the cart is abandoned
  5. 7-10 days after the cart is abandoned

Again, this is just an example, but it does give you an idea of how many emails you could potentially have in your cart recovery workflow and when to send them. 

We’ve covered a lot today, but one thing to take away from all of this is that creating your email sequence and recovering lost sales is all within your grasp. 

We hope these examples give you some inspiration for your funnel! Ready to jump in and start building out your emails?

Click here to sign up for your 14-day free trial and start creating dynamic cart abandonment emails inside Sendlane!


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