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Abandoned carts - A Must-read Article for Beginners

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To anyone doing online business, abandoned carts must be an aching problem you’ve been dealing with since the first days of your stores. Cart abandonment itself is nothing unusual, as there would always be people who come to your store for any reason but buying.

The question only arises when in the same industry, 8 out of 10 people leave their carts abandoned in your store, while in opponent stores, 8 out of 10 people make purchases. There are things you can do to bring people back to finish their carts in your store. But before making any strategic move, understanding how things work are essential.

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Abandoned carts and the mind-blowing facts you need to knowUnderstand why people abandon their cartsHow to track your cart abandonment rateHow to recover abandoned carts

Abandoned carts and the mind-blowing facts you need to know

The below list of articles covers the most fundamental definitions regarding cart abandonments. Run through the list to get yourself ready before thinking about what to do next.

What is an abandoned cart?

Abandoned cart or shopping cart abandonment is defined differently among industries. However, no matter what type of product or service the store is providing, the definition of “abandoned shopping cart” reflects on the same problems: When people start the checkout process but leave it unfinished before making payment. 

Read more: Optimization Glossary

Statistics about how people are shopping online

What does an abandonment rate of 81.40% mean? (AbandonAid in 2017) That means: Out of 10 potential customers who start the checkout process within the store, only two finish the process and successfully make payment. (More than) 8 people, though with different levels of completion, leave their carts unfinished.


Take a look at the statistics and you’ll see a fact that e-commerce stores are suffering from the same problems and due to the same reasons.

Read more:

The rate of recovering abandoned carts


You’ve been trying many techniques for cart abandonment recovery but only a few works? Well, that’s another common problem. The average email conversion rate of cart recovering campaigns reaches 29% as an achievement. Many factors are leading to shopping cart abandonment, which is definitely worth taking a look.

Read more: Nine case studies and infographics on cart abandonment and email retargeting

Understand why people abandon their carts

Understand the reasons people leave their cart without paying is critical once you decide to recover abandoned carts. Conducting surveys is the most common and easy way to unveil the reasons behind each behavior of your store visitors.

How to conduct a survey

Exit surveys are the surveys that popup right at the moment when people leave their cart, regardless of which step they are in. As it’s like your last chance to obtain insight into customers behaviors, asking the right questions is a thing to discuss.

Read more: Using exit surveys to uncover why potential buyers aren't converting

The reasons why people leave their cart unfinished


The reasons people leave their carts within one store might be different from the others. However, according to Shopify, they all follow the same patterns. Avoiding the factors that have been causing cart abandonment in other stores is the best thing you can do to mitigate this phenomenon in your initial phase.

Read more: The Top 4 Reasons Users Abandon Their Carts and What to Do About it

While Shopify sums up the reasons into 4 key points:

  • Being forced to create an account
  • Struggling with complicated checkout processes
  • Unexpected delivery costs
  • Concerns over security

Hubspot has another point of view about why people leave their carts unfinished. With limited payment options, limited shipping options, payment options being not mobile-friendly, the article seems to dig deeper into how your payment options affect cart abandonment rate, which is a good viewpoint for you to consider. 

Read more: 8 Reasons for Shopping Cart Abandonment and How to Combat It [Infographic]

How to track your cart abandonment rate

How to check abandoned carts in Google Analytics

So, you are applying techniques to recover abandoned carts and want to know if they are actually delivering results. The fundamental for measuring any type of performance is data and report. Google Analytics is the one true answer to these types of questions. The free version of the tool is powerful enough for you to analyze the metrics and track how things change after the improvements. All you need to do is learn how to use it.

Read more: How To Track Shopping Cart Abandonment Using Google Analytics

The process of setting up Google Analytics to track shopping cart abandonment is also broken clearly into 5 steps in this guide from Barilliance. As a beginner, you can easily follow and set up your own tracking system.


Read more: 5 Easy Steps: Track Shopping Cart Abandonment Rate in Google Analytics

To some extent, recovering abandoned cart means you are intervening in the way people live. You’re changing what they think about your brand and their reactions towards your products. So before tracking cart abandonment, using Google Analytics to understand customer behaviors upon entering your website is a good way to find ideas of what to do next.

Read more: How Google Analytics reports can help you understand customers

How to recover abandoned carts

Retarget people with Facebook remarketing

The best practices to use Facebook ads to retarget customers

The principle of remarketing is to be available around wherever your customers are until they are ready to buy your products. And a platform with over 2 billions of daily active users like Facebook is an ideal place to get started. Marketers around the world are using Facebook ads and Facebook messenger to bring customers back to their store. Take a look to see how people are doing it and what you can learn from them.


Read more: 7 Super-Creative, Crazy-Effective Retargeting Ad Ideas

Recover abandoned carts with Facebook messenger

Facebook Chatbot is the primary way people leverage Facebook messenger to engage customers and recover abandoned carts. The way you set up the chatbot varies by the app you are using, Recart’s guide is an example that helps you form an initial idea of how it works.

Read more: Recart guide to Facebook Messenger for Shopify stores

Recover abandoned cart with email marketing

Abandoned cart email best practices/ examples

Among the abandoned cart recovery best practices, email marketing is probably the most common technique. The article analyzes the email strategies to bring customers back to your store, with examples of successful abandoned cart messages, sample emails, copy and also the content strategy to improve recovery rate.

Read more: Creative Abandoned Cart Recovery Email Strategies Your Competitors Aren’t Using

Best abandoned cart email subject lines

Regardless of how appealing your content is, recovery emails only make sense when people actually open it. And while people tend to spend just a few seconds on each newsletter before making a decision whether to open it or not, your email’s headline and preview text turn out to have a significant impact on your open rate.

Read more: 13 Amazing Abandoned Cart Emails (And What You Can Learn From Them)

Abandoned cart email templates

Without design and technical background, you can still create emails with perfect-looking designs. That’s the power of email templates. All you need to do is to pick the template that best fits your cart recovery campaign, get the HTML file and apply to your newsletter.


Read more: 3 Free Abandoned Cart Email Templates Courtesy of Email Monks

How to stay compliant with GDPR

The General Data Protection Regulation, or GDPR, which became enforceable beginning 25 May 2018, regulates how companies deal with customers data with heavy fines for failure to stay compliant. Staying GDPR compliant is good not only for your business’s health but also for your authority and reputation so make sure you are sending legal emails.

Read more: GDPR at Abandoned Cart Recovery

Best abandoned cart email sequence

When it comes to abandoned cart emails, people don’t get back to their cart immediately right after they receive your first emails. It might be a long story with a combination of economy psychology, society, humanity… whatever you can think of to establish a relationship with customers.

The first thing to mention about email workflow is automation. You anticipate the behaviors of customers upon getting an email, build a journey based on the behaviors and use it as the logic for your email series. The key strategy is that your email will serve as reminders and will only be sent once being triggered.

Read more: How To Create A High-Converting Automated Abandoned Cart Email Series For Shopify

Best tools to recover abandoned carts

You have a store with a majority of visitors adding products to carts without buying. Your survey is ready and you know why people are leaving. You are excited with ideas for cart abandonment recovery emails. Well, that’s when you need an email marketing platform, an autoresponder that allows emails to be sent automatically when being triggered, a reminder that keeps customers well-informed about their abandoned carts.

Along with Klaviyo, ActiveCampaign, GetResponse, Omnisend, you can find recommendation about other platforms before making a decision.


Read more: Comparison of the Best Email Marketing Platforms for Ecommerce

Regardless of if you are using Shopify, Woocommerce, Magento or BigCommerce, no matter what platform you are using to run your online store, the techniques applied to bring customers back to their unfinished carts are the same. Along with Facebook ads, email series, people have been using SMS messages, popup, discount code or images to improve customers experience and reduce cart abandonment rate in online stores. Sometimes people are simply not ready to buy, sometimes there’re reasons behind it. Make understand customers, address their needs with your strategic moves and keep testing, those are the best things you can do to bring people back to their abandoned carts.


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