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Create an Abandoned Cart SMS Marketing Strategy that Converts

Updated: Jan 5

Implement SMS as an abandoned cart marketing strategy.

Woman shopping online

Abandoned carts are a huge opportunity for businesses.

Optimistic marketers see this as an opportunity to win back a consumer's attention and entice them to purchase.

With an SMS abandoned cart marketing strategy, you can send that customer a personalized text message that can convert that once interested customer into a sale.

Even more reasons to implement an abandoned cart strategy: About 70% of shoppers abandon their carts before completing a purchase. And the top reason for doing so, according to shoppers, is that the extra costs, like shipping and taxes, are too high.

Based on those statistics, consider crafting an automated text with an incentive that drives them back to their cart to purchase the item.

Why use text marketing for abandoned cart messages?

Abandoned cart emails are an effective way to remarket to shoppers who don’t purchase the item. You can complement email with SMS to help boost conversions or implement an SMS-only abandoned cart strategy.

Marketing texts have an 82% open rate and 36% click-through rate. It’s also one of customers’ preferred channels—in the Global Messaging Engagement Report, respondents said SMS was the number 2 channel they prefer to interact with, following email.

Plus, an increasing number of ecommerce sales—currently 72.9%—happen on mobile devices. Furthermore, communicating with customers on the device where they prefer to shop makes it easier for them to pick up where they left off with their purchase.


Tips and Best Practices for an Abandoned Cart SMS Marketing Strategy

Now that you have a better idea of why you should use abandoned cart texts, let’s look at how to ensure these are effective to drive conversions.

Offer an attractive incentive— Added costs like shipping and fees can discourage a customer from completing a purchase. To bring customers back, consider offering free shipping or a discount.

For example, a text message like “Get free shipping when you order in the next 48 hours” can entice the customer to purchase the product they left in their cart.

Utilize SMS and email— While some customers prefer receiving an email, others respond better to SMS. Make sure to request your consumer's phone number and email address in your opt-in forms so that when new customers join your marketing and communication lists, they can choose to receive emails, text messages, or both.

Combining email and SMS strategically plays to the strengths of each channel. Of course, email allows for longer messages and offers that recipients can return to when they’re ready. SMS is best for concise, time-sensitive messages that customers should quickly act on.

For example, after a customer leaves an item in their cart, send them an email that features the product and includes a discount code valid for a week. Then, when the code expires in 1 day, create a sense of urgency by sending a reminder via text.

Learn more about how to use SMS and email marketing together.

It’s about time— One study found that sending a message within an hour of cart abandonment resulted in a 20.3% conversion rate.

SMS is the perfect channel for this time frame because it’s more immediate than email, and 95% of recipients read messages within 3 minutes of receiving them. Take advantage of this immediacy by sending a reminder while the customer may still be thinking about the product.

One reminder doesn’t always work, so craft a campaign with additional reminders every 24 hours. The magic number is three total messages.

Offer real-time help— One of the main advantages of SMS is it allows you to engage in conversation. Perhaps the customer has questions about the product. Two-way text correspondence allows you to offer real-time assistance via text message.

Let customers know they can reply to your text with any questions or pass those questions on to a customer service chat program you may already have in place.

Create a sense of immediacy—Every text message should include a call to action (CTA) that drives a conversion. With texting, a CTA is an opportunity to create a sense of urgency that entices the subscriber to "act now".

Consider including words like “today,” “now,” and “soon” to help generate FOMO (fear of missing out), especially in the second and third texts in your automated abandoned cart campaign. Let the subscriber know that the discount code expires or that there is a limited number of that product.

Always provide opt-out instructions. Your hope is that your abandoned cart text strategy drives the customer to complete the purchase. However, that is not always the case. Some subscribers may be discouraged by the consistent reminders. Make sure they know how they can opt out of your text program. Be sure to follow CTIA guidelines. Our platform automatically adds "Txt STOP to STOP" to automated text messages.


Automated Abandoned Cart SMS Templates

Message 1: [BUSINESS_NAME]: We noticed you forgot something in your cart. Use code [PROMO_CODE] for [percentage] off when you check out today. [URL]

Message 2: [BUSINESS_NAME]: [FIRST_NAME], this item is selling fast. Get free shipping with promo code [PROMO_CODE] before it’s too late! Offer expires tomorrow. [URL]

Message 3: [BUSINESS_NAME]: [FIRST_NAME], your discount code is about to expire! Complete your purchase today to get [percentage] off. [URL]

As you know, marketing is an art and science. Utilize easy-to-use, automated technology that creatively engages with customers and drives sales.

*Note: Abandoned cart text marketing requires integration with your ecommerce platform. Existing integrations include Shopify and WooCo, but we are happy to work with you to build the integration that accomplishes your texting goals.

Updated 1/5/2024


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