How to Recover More Revenue from Abandoned Shopping Carts

June 27, 2023 | E-Commerce

Why do brands engage in retargeting campaigns? If a shopper is serious about an item, that abandoned cart email, or the series of display ads sure to appear after it, can do a lot to tempt the shopper to make the final purchase. 

Those who have abandoned shopping carts signal high intent at the very best and high interest at the very worst. If browsers have added products to their shopping carts online, you can assume that they’re at least considering buying your product. It’s possible that all they need is a little nudge to push them to buy. Enter, abandoned cart email campaigns and retargeting display ads. 

In this post, we’ll talk about why you should spend valuable energy and resources focused on abandoned shopping cart campaigns and how to optimize these campaigns to recover more revenue. 

Why You Should Focus on Abandoned Cart Email Campaigns 

Building email campaigns for site visitors who have abandoned their online shopping carts has a high return on investment. Why? The browsers on your ‘abandoned cart’ list have already been made aware of your brand and are interested enough in your products to consider a purchase. Essentially, the work has already been done to make them somewhat familiar with and interested in what you have to offer. Abandoned shopping cart browsers are warm leads that your email marketing team can build high-performing email campaigns around.

Yet, certain businesses will argue that they don’t want to build abandoned cart email campaigns because they don’t think the number of users that these emails target is significant enough. However, if this is indeed the argument, these companies have grossly underestimated online shopping behavior. According to Active Campaign, about 60% of all site visitors will add something to their shopping carts, but only about 5% end up actually purchasing. That leaves 55% of site visitors who have expressed interest in your products but have not yet converted to a sale. 

What’s most important to note is that an enormous percentage of these browsers are receptive to abandoned cart email campaigns. One case study, from eConsultancy, found that 44% of all abandoned cart emails are opened, and a third of those who click on the emails lead to purchase. Email autoresponder campaigns that are delivered soon after a cart has been abandoned can do a lot for your sales. If you choose to not pursue these browsers, you’re at risk for losing a tremendous amount of revenue.

So now, the question is, how do companies technically and strategically recover more revenue with abandoned cart campaigns? No matter your company’s industry or  scale, the first step you’ll want to take is to install tracking pixels onto your site. 

1. Install Tracking Pixels on Your Website Pages

Tracking pixels make it possible for you to track browsers through your site and then hit them with retargeting campaigns later on based on their onsite activity. 

Many businesses use Facebook’s tracking pixel. Not only does it track conversions attributed to the social platform’s Ads program, but it also tracks site visitors. This provides marketers with the toolkit needed to target browsers in later retargeting campaigns.

To set up your Facebook Tracking Pixel, you can either integrate your store and Facebook Pixel in your admin without using any code or you can add the code manually to each page of your store and to your checkout.

You can also apply tracking pixels to your website or to your e-commerce store by using Google Analytics conversion tracking for your ‘add-to-carts’ and ‘checkouts.’ To implement this, you’ll need to create a Google Analytics account and define Goals and Funnels for your website. 

If the pixel is linked to your email service provider, actions such as abandoned cart emails can automatically trigger ready-made autoresponders. Most email service providers will ask you to add an html code snippet to your email templates to set this up.

2. Display User-Generated Content in Abandoned Shopping Cart Emails

One of the most common ways to optimize recovered revenue from abandoned carts is to display user-generated (UGC) in your abandoned cart email campaigns. To capitalize on abandoned shopping cart emails’ high open rates and their attentive audiences, your brand will need high-impact visuals.

User-generated content has been proven to increase conversions 2x when displayed on e-commerce channels. Why does user generated content marketing work? Because your customers prefer and trust visual content that comes from real people. Featuring user-generated content in your email marketing provides a more personalized and relevant shopping experience to subscribers. 

Since user-generated content is the most authentic and trusted form of marketing content, try bringing it to yet another e-commerce channel. Feature product-specific customer photos in abandoned cart emails to boost conversion rates and recover revenue.

So how do you add product-specific user-generated content into triggered email campaigns such as abandoned cart? Content marketing platforms, such as Pixlee, link up with your ecommerce storefront and email service provider. It will help you to tag your product SKUs in each customer photo or video so that your ESP can easily identify content of specific products to pull in triggered campaigns. This allows email marketers to display user-generated content featuring specific product(s) that users have left in their abandoned shopping carts in retargeting email campaigns.  

3. Retargeting Facebook & Instagram Ads 

Facebook (and, thus, Instagram) Ads are also fantastic tools that allow you to retarget customers who have recently visited certain pages of your site—including those who have added items to cart. To create successful Facebook or Instagram Ads, you can choose “Custom audiences from a website” and then set the detailed criteria of your cart checkout page.

Similar to the tactic of using product specific user-generated content in your actual abandon cart emails, you can use it in your retargeting ads on social media. While you can use dynamic product ads featuring stock images of your products, consider the impact of featuring native content from the platform that you’re advertising on. For example, on Instagram, you might consider asking customers for their permission to re-gram their content and to feature it in display ads on the social platform. Ads with native content on their respective social platforms help to contextualize products and entice purchase. Ads featuring user-generated content increase click-through rate and have about 6.9x higher engagement than the same ads featuring brand-created content. 

Your content marketing platform should be able to connect to your advertising software so that your team can easily feature its highest performing customer photos in display ads on social media and other third party sites. 

Final Thoughts

Abandoned cart campaigns are already quite high performing. They have above-average click through and conversion rates and can be further optimized with user-generated content. Simply put, shoppers who have abandoned items in cart are a goldmine hidden in plain site. By focusing resources on these shoppers and extending the value of real customer photos and videos to both your retargeting emails and display ads, your company will recover more revenue and boost conversion rates.

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