Abandoned Cart Email Template

The Search Engine Shop

Adding an abandoned cart email system to your online store is a fantastic way to boost your online sales. There’s really two parts of an effective abandoned cart email system:

  1. Having the system/software/functionality to track abandoned carts and send the automated emails
  2. Having an abandoned cart email that actually works

What is an Abandoned Cart?

An “abandoned cart” is a scenario where someone comes to your website, looks around, fills up a shopping cart and gets part way through the checkout process and leaves. This shopping cart is called an abandoned cart.

Abandoned cart emails or a cart abandonment email system is a system whereby the website CMS will automatically email people who’ve abandoned the cart reminding them about the cart and asking them if they need help or if there was a reason they didn’t complete the checkout process.

An abandoned cart email system can provide a huge amount of value to the business owner in uncovering problems with the website and reasons why people don’t buy. This allows the business to improve the website so that future visitors don’t have this problem or objection.

The Purpose of Abandoned Cart Emails

I’m amazed at the poor quality of some abandoned cart emails I receive myself when shopping online. It seems most people setting these things up don’t understand the purpose behind abandoned cart emails – its not to hassle the buyer into buying.

The primary goal is to find out what the objection to buying or reason why they didn’t buy, fix that problem, update the website content or do whatever you need to do to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

The secondary goal is to see if you can answer their query, objection or fix whatever problem it was they had that stopped them from buying. Doing it this way means you boost your website conversion rate long term and at the same time reduce your customer service overhead – in other words, focus on the big, easy long term win first, then the short term win.

Below I’ve included an abandoned cart email template that we’ve created and evolved in conjunction with clients over the last 12-18 months. Feel free to take it and use it on your site.

How to Make Sure the Email is Read

A key part of abandoned cart emails is actually getting them opened in the first place. The sender should ALWAYS be a persons name, in the example below the email will show up as being from “Kylie from The Search Engine Shop” and the subject of the email is “do you need any help with your order?” << the subject line is what will attract peoples attention.

Generally an all lower case subject line is better as it doesn’t come off as automated. Also keep the formatting and fancy HTML to a minimum…normal people don’t fill their emails full of formatting and tables so don’t do it with your abandoned cart emails.

Make sure that the email is written from first person perspective, note that it says “I” instead of “We” throughout.

Don’t use a mail merge Hi NAME setup. A fair proportion of the time (at least 30%) people won’t fill in the name field properly and often put an initial or both names in the firstname field so your Hi NAME becomes Hi M or Hi JohnSmith or something similar which will almost always result in the rest of the email being ignored.

Abandoned Cart Email Tools & Software

A key part of getting your abandoned cart email system to work is the software to drive it. Some ecommerce systems have basic functionality built in. For established ecommerce businesses we typically recommend a fully fledged ecommerce marketing suite as the feature set will help drive significantly better results from email.

Here’s a handful of tools we use and recommend to our clients on a regular basis:

ActiveCampaign – a fantastic full featured suite that doesn’t have a huge price tag attached. ActiveCampaign can do some amazing automation including adding users onto remarketing lists for use on Facebook

ConvertKit – one of the newer email marketing tools on the scene and has a really simple to use interface for such an extremely powerful tool.

SendInBlue – a super simple email marketing tool and one that’s very popular with Woocommerce users.

Klaviyo – the Rolls Royce of ecommerce email marketing. Klaviyo is a beast but is more expensive than the other two options.



Hi there, Kylie here from XYZ

I noticed you put together a shopping cart on our site but didn’t submit your order, wondering if you need any help or if you have any questions about the order before you submit it?

If there’s anything I can do, just hit the reply button and drop me a line, alternatively you can email us on help@domain.com with any product or order queries.

Your shopping cart:
I’ve included a list of your shopping cart contents below. You can click this link (insert link here) to load up the shopping cart again.



I’d also love to hear if you have any suggestions on how we can improve our website, again just hit the reply button and let me know. If you need to discuss your order in more detail, feel free to call me during business hours on 555-555-555


Kylie from XYZ


More Ecommerce Email Marketing Tactics…

Click play in the podcast episode below where I talk with John Mcintyre, an email marketing specialist, about the 4 classic email marketing mistakes ecommerce businesses are making.


  • Gert-Jan Bark

    Reply Reply March 15, 2014

    This email template for abandon carts looks great, will definately try to use it and see what happens, thanks Brendan!

    • Brendan Tully

      Reply Reply March 16, 2014

      Thanks bud, the big win is taking the feedback you get from it and using that to improve the site

  • Jason

    Reply Reply June 15, 2017

    What is the PRODUCT 1 LINK and 2 in the body paragraph??

    • Brendan Tully

      Reply Reply June 15, 2017

      They’re placeholders – you embed the contents of the cart! Most tools have this functionality

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