The Only Advanced Abandoned Cart Workflow Template You’ll Ever Need


Shopping cart abandonment is the scourge of ecommerce marketers everywhere.

You’ve piqued a prospective customer’s interest so much that they’ve visited your store, browsed your products, and added one (or more) of them to your shopping cart.

Then disaster strikes: for whatever reason, they abandon the transaction.

Some might convert at a later point; others are never seen again.

You’d think cart abandonment would be relatively rare. After all, why go through all the trouble of starting the checkout process if you’re not planning to buy?

Yet the Baymard Institute says the average documented online cart abandonment rate currently stands at 69.99 percent, meaning about seven in 10 shopping carts end up being abandoned.

Given that customers are estimated to leave around $4 trillion worth of products in shopping carts over the course of a year, it’s clear that cart abandonment has major financial ramifications for ecommerce stores.

Fortunately, it’s not all bad news, because Baymard claims that up to $260 billion of revenue lost to abandoned carts can be recovered.

In this article, I’m going to talk through advanced abandoned cart workflows for ecommerce, giving you practical tips (and examples) to help you win back as many of those “lost” sales as possible.




Why Customers Abandon Their Carts 

To understand why advanced abandoned cart workflows are so important, you first need to put yourself in the consumer’s shoes.

A significant chunk of people visiting your ecommerce store aren’t planning to make immediate purchases. They could be:

  • Comparing prices
  • Saving products for later
  • Researching gift options
  • Learning about a product’s features
  • Simply killing time

The Baymard Institute’s research shows that almost three in five online shoppers in the US have abandoned a shopping cart in the last three months because they were just browsing and/or not ready to buy.

Your job is to reach out to these potential customers and persuade them that the products they’ve left in their carts are worth coming back for.

But what about the remaining two-fifths of consumers? Those who were in a position to buy, but still chose to bounce rather than complete the checkout process? 

Per Baymard, the number #1 reason for this, cited by 48 percent of recent cart abandoners, is down to high extra costs like shipping and taxes.

In other words, these are price-related abandonments. These shoppers liked your product, but weren’t comfortable with the final cost. It’s comparatively simple to convert these shoppers with a well-targeted discount or a free shipping offer.

That leaves us with two basic “flavors” of cart abandoner:

  1. People who weren’t ready to buy
  2. People who were ready to buy, but were put off by something (often cost-related)

You’re not going to win back all those shoppers with a single abandoned cart email.

Instead, you need a sophisticated abandoned cart workflow with multiple touchpoints and channels, all geared toward driving conversions.

Why You Need an Advanced Abandoned Cart Workflow

So everyone has a cart abandonment workflow, right?

(And if you don’t, you should get on that — posthaste.)

But a lot of merchants stick to a single-email workflow. True, you might bring someone back after that first initial email. 

But the truth is, discounts in the first email have conditioned customers to intentionally abandon their carts and wait for the email with the discount. 

And some will just stay distracted through that first email, never to return to their forgotten cart. That means money left on the table for you. 

So how can you create an abandoned cart workflow that doesn’t give away the farm, but still engages your customer enough to come back and complete the purchase?

You need the next level of abandoned cart workflows. It’s time to graduate to an advanced cart abandonment workflow that keeps the engagement happening over a longer stretch of time. 

Here’s how that might look…

Try This Advanced Abandoned Cart Workflow (With Examples)

Plan Your Abandoned Cart Email Sequence

Email plays a vital role in any abandoned cart workflow, with research from Barilliance revealing that cart abandonment emails see:

  • Open rates of >40%
  • Average conversion rates of 18.64 percent


But don’t expect a single email to do all the heavy lifting. Remember, cart abandonments happen for various reasons, and you’re unlikely to win over every abandoner with just one message or offer.

Let’s take a look at an example abandoned cart email sequence:

Email #1: 1 Hour After Cart Abandonment

The opening email in your abandoned cart sequence is all about reminding your prospective customer why they liked your product in the first place.


After all, they may simply not have had time to complete the checkout process first time round. It might only take a gentle nudge to transform them from cart abandoner to paying customer.

Steal this Abandoned Cart Template:

Subject Line: You Forgot Something!

Hey {first name},

Looks like you left some products in your shopping cart…

[Add a product image]

[Add a “Return to Cart” CTA button]

Still not sure?

Simply reply to this email with any questions about our products, shipping policy, returns, or anything else.

Email #2: 24 Hours After Cart Abandonment

Okay, so the first email in your sequence didn’t work.

No problem. Now’s the time to ramp things up by playing on your customer’s fear of missing out.

Like it or not, FOMO is a powerful motivator — particularly among younger consumers. Indeed, one study revealed that 60 percent of Millennials make reactive purchases after experiencing FOMO, most often within 24 hours.

And while fear of missing out is more commonly associated with the stuff we see on social media (like our friends traveling in Europe, wearing jazzy new outfits, and attending concerts we’d never even heard about), marketers can also “do their bit” to drive feelings of FOMO.

Here’s what that might look like:

Subject Line: We can't keep it forever!

Hey {first name},

That product you added to your cart is still waiting for you…

But we can’t keep hold of it forever!

[Add a product image]

[Add a “Return to Cart” CTA button]

Complete your order now to make sure you don’t miss out.

Email #3: 48 Hours After Cart Abandonment

Remember: a large proportion of shoppers abandon their carts for financial reasons (such as because your shipping costs were too high).

There’s a simple solution to that problem — add a limited-time discount to your abandoned cart email series.

Fact is, while we’d love our products to do all the talking, discounts and promotions are always going to play a pivotal role in driving conversions. Indeed, research from RetailMeNot revealed that: 

  • Two-thirds of consumers have made a purchase they weren't originally planning to make, solely based on finding a coupon or discount.
  • Four in five feel encouraged to make a first-time purchase with a brand that’s new to them after finding an offer or discount.

Steal this abandoned cart template:

Subject Line: Would 15% Off Sweeten the Deal?

Hey {first name},

Looks like you left some products in your shopping cart…

[Add a product image]

[Add a “Return to Cart” CTA button]

Still not sure?

Simply reply to this email with any questions about our products, shipping policy, returns, or anything else.



Fight Cart Abandonment With Drip

Sure, cart abandonment is a fact of life.

But this article (hopefully) demonstrates that you can absolutely win back a bunch of lost sales and revenue with advanced abandoned cart workflows.

There’s just one more problem:

To execute those workflows effectively, you need a sophisticated marketing automation tool.

One that’s capable of weaving together all your abandoned cart data and transforming it into timely, laser-targeted, conversion-driving campaigns.

Drip is the platform you’ve been looking for.

We open up a whole world of behavior-based automation, allowing you to create personalized shopping experiences through action-based triggers.


No more generic marketing; start reaching shoppers with exactly the right offer at exactly the right time.

Sounds good? Come check us out for yourself by signing up for your 14-day free trial.

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Come for the automated marketing. Stay for the endless revenue growth.

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