Can Email Reminders Reclaim Sales When Shoppers Stray?

While the underlying reasons behind product page abandonment may be relatively undefined, brands that employ reminders must do so with the utmost relevancy.
Customer Experience

Consumers no longer filter through one predictable funnel, as the average buyer's journey spans multiple channels and devices. But, as shoppers transition between online and in-store opportunities, brands must reassess their engagement strategies in order to increase conversions and maximize revenue.

Bronto Software's recent "Revenue Rescue: Saving Sales When Shoppers Stray" report examines the ways in which retailers try to reengage customers on the verge of abandonment. Conducted in partnership with Demandware, researchers audited the product page abandonment strategies of more than 100 retailers as part of its two-part study in an effort to understand how brands reconnect with shoppers at the start of their purchase journeys. Because consumer expectations and behaviors continue to shift, companies must also realign their responses so they may provide seamless, omnichannel experiences that facilitate loyalty and advocacy. Therefore, retailers must actively break from the outdated view that all shoppers disappear with no intention of returning to complete their transactions in the future.

The following statistics explore the top strategies driving product page abandonment reminders and how such messages impact consumer perceptions:

  • Overall, 85 percent of retailers fail to send product page reminders, while 10 percent send one reminder. Only 5 percent send two reminders, indicating slow adoption of this newer strategy.
  • Fifty-six percent of product page abandonment reminders were sent within 24 hours after the shopper left the given page, while 28 percent were sent 24-48 hours post-abandonment.
  • Only 11 percent of product page reminders featured a subject line that offered an incentive to return to the site, while 39 percent referenced that product specifically or vaguely. However, 39 percent featured the abandoned product without acknowledging the previous visit.
  • Eleven percent of product page reminders included product ratings, 6 percent featured reviews, and 6 percent featured both as motivation to get consumers shopping again. Only 6 percent of reminders, however, included product inventory levels to drive urgency.
  • While 56 percent of product page abandonment emails avoided showing the price of the item in question, 28 percent featured savings and product discounts.
  • Though 39 percent of product page abandonment reminders included recommended products as related suggestions, only 22 percent of reminders included customer service contact information, nearest store details, or others ways in which consumers can complete their orders.

Key takeaway: Because consumers typically take to the Internet to explore options and pricing, it's almost impossible for brands to determine why shoppers abandon product pages. From casual browsing to basic research, numerous factors contribute to such behaviors. In many cases, consumers leave product pages if ease and flexibility don't flow from one channel or device to another. Therefore, retailers must develop responsive sites and strategies that simplify the customer experience and avoid attrition in the first place. Yet, while the underlying reasons behind product page abandonment may be relatively undefined, brands that wish to employ reminders must do so with the utmost relevancy. Such messages have the potential to drive effective reengagement, but retailers must test their email strategy to determine what will work best for their given audiences. Ultimately, an optimal balance between timing and content must be struck in order to provide shoppers with the resources they need to complete their purchases on their own terms.