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Optimize Email for Abandoned Carts [Slide Show]

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130103-0 Intro

Your customer came thisclose to making an online purchase, but—for some reason—abandoned her cart before finalizing the sale. How should you follow up? According to SaleCycle, successful conversions depend on three key factors:

  1. Timing: How long should you wait before sending an email?
  2. Tone: Which subject lines motivate customers to open your message?
  3. Content: What convinces customers who abandon carts to make a purchase?

SaleCycle surveyed 200 leading global brands on these topics, and here's what it learned (in infographic form).

130103-1 Average Conversion Rates by Sending Time

Average Conversion Rates by Sending Time

The more time elapses, the more conversion rates fall. When customers receive an email sent 20 minutes after abandoning a cart, 5.2% of them convert. Thereafter, conversions drop steadily—settling, finally, at a 2.6% conversion rate when emails are sent more than 24 hours later.

Your best bet: Send an email within an hour of cart abandonment.

130103-2 Average Open Rates by Subject Line Content and Tone

Average Open Rates by Subject Line Content and Tone

Companies surveyed by SaleCycle enjoy good open rates with a variety of subject lines. That fact underscores the importance of testing to find the best mix for your customers—testing for content and tone.

Based on the survey results, a subject line that mentions your company's name and a product detail is probably a good place to start.

130103-3 Average Click-Through Rates by Email Content

Average Click-Through Rates by Email Content

Make it easy for customers to return to your site and complete their purchase; remove any obstacles from their path. "Clear and simple calls to action such as 'Complete Your Order' consistently perform best," notes SaleCycle.

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Christian Gulliksen is a writer who has authored several of the Get to the Po!nt newsletters for MarketingProfs. A former editor at Robb Report, he has also contributed to Worth, Variety, and The Hollywood Reporter.

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