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How to Craft Irresistibly Clickable Abandoned Cart Email Subject Lines

Updated: Jun 20, 2023



Cart abandonment is a very common issue in the eCommerce business and poses a challenge for many businesses. Let's admit it, even if you're a business owner yourself, you have at least once added an item in the virtual cart but then left without completing the purchase. You might be surprised how many businesses are facing this problem.


However, with the right strategy, you can recover these abandoned carts and turn them into successful sales. One powerful tool in your arsenal is crafting compelling abandoned cart email subject lines.


In this blog post, I'll show you how to create irresistible abandoned cart email subject lines that captivate your audience and encourage them to click through to your email content.


Understanding the psychology behind abandoned cart emails


To create abandoned cart email subject lines that really work, it's important to understand why customers leave their shopping carts behind. According to BigCommerce, the top five reasons why people abandon shopping carts are:

  • Unexpected high costs

  • Mandatory account creation

  • Window shopping

  • Limited payment options

  • Website security concerns

Behind all of these lies the feeling of indecisiveness and insecurity. Things like the price, shipping costs, or even the quality of the product might be holding them back. That's why your subject lines should speak directly to these concerns, offering reassurance and helpful information to clear any doubts.


According to Shopify, sending abandoned cart emails decreases cart abandonment and increases sales.


statistics about abandoned cart emails

Distractions are another big reason for cart abandonment. Life can get busy, and customers might get sidetracked while checking out. That's when your abandoned cart email subject lines can remind them about their abandoned carts and highlight the benefits of completing their purchase. It's a great way to reignite their interest and motivate them to take action.


Creating a sense of urgency is also key in recovering abandoned carts. When your subject lines convey a feeling of "act now or miss out," customers are more likely to open your email and complete their purchase. Words like "limited time offer" or "exclusive discount" can trigger that urgency and make them feel compelled to take action before it's too late.


Understanding these psychological factors gives you the power to personalize your subject lines, address customers' concerns, grab their attention, and inspire them to take action.


Crafting effective subject lines to capture attention


When you're trying to create subject lines for your abandoned cart emails, the most important thing is to grab people's attention. You only have a few words to make them notice you in their crowded inboxes.


Here are two effective strategies you can use to craft subject lines that really captivate and make people take action:


Keep it short and catchy

Since you have limited space, it's crucial to be concise. Try to make your subject lines short, direct, and straight to the point. Use strong and action-oriented words that grab attention and make people curious.


For example:


"Don't Miss Out: Your Cart's Waiting!"

"Last Chance: Complete Your Order Now!"

"Unlock Exclusive Savings - Finish Your Purchase!"


If you want to make them catchier or wittier, try something like:


"Hey, Cart Abandoner! Your Items Are Getting FOMO"

"Your Cart's Begging for Attention! Give It Some Love"

"Abandoned Cart Alert: Your Items Feel Neglected. Save Them!"


Use urgency and scarcity to drive action


urgency in abandoned cart email subject lines

Urgency is a powerful motivator that can really get people moving. Incorporate phrases like "Time is running out" or "Limited stock available" to create a sense of urgency in your subject lines.


By making people fear they might miss out on something, you'll motivate them to open your email and complete their purchase before it's too late.


Remember, the goal is to stand out and make people excited to see what's inside your email. So, be concise, use powerful words, and create a sense of urgency to drive action.


Personalization and relevance for higher engagement


Personalization is key to connecting with your audience and increasing engagement. When crafting abandoned cart email subject lines, consider the following strategies to make your messages more relevant and tailored to each recipient:


Creating a sense of curiosity or intrigue


curiosity in abandoned cart email subject lines

Spark curiosity with subject lines that hint at what's inside the email without giving everything away. For example, use subject lines like "You won't believe what's waiting for you!" or "Something amazing awaits you in your cart."


Using personalization to make the email feel tailored to the customer

Include the recipient's name in the subject line to make it feel more personal. For example, "Hey [Name], your cart is calling you!" This simple touch shows that you value and recognize each individual customer, making them more likely to engage with your email.


By incorporating concise and attention-grabbing subject lines and leveraging personalization techniques, you can significantly increase the chances of your abandoned cart emails standing out, capturing attention, and driving recipients to take action.


Instilling a fear of missing out (FOMO) to encourage action

One powerful psychological trigger that can significantly boost engagement and drive action in abandoned cart recovery is the fear of missing out (FOMO). By leveraging FOMO in your abandoned cart email subject lines, you can create a sense of urgency and excitement that compels recipients to click through and complete their purchase.


Here are two effective strategies for incorporating FOMO:


Including incentives or special offers

People love a good deal, and nothing triggers FOMO more than the fear of missing out on a great discount or exclusive offer. Use subject lines that highlight special incentives such as "Get 20% off your abandoned cart items!" or "Unlock a secret deal in your cart!"


By emphasizing the savings or unique benefits awaiting them, recipients will be enticed to open your email and take advantage of the offer before it expires.


Tapping into the fear of missing out on popular or limited items

fomo in abandoned cart email subject lines

Humans have a natural inclination to desire things that are popular, exclusive, or in limited supply. Craft subject lines that communicate scarcity and popularity, such as "Hurry! Our best-selling item is almost gone from your cart!" or "Don't let someone else snatch up your favorite product!"


These subject lines trigger FOMO by suggesting that coveted items may sell out or become unavailable soon, motivating recipients to act swiftly.


By strategically incorporating incentives, special offers, and a sense of scarcity in your abandoned cart email subject lines, you create a sense of urgency and FOMO that compels recipients to open your email, revisit their abandoned carts, and complete their purchases before missing out on the opportunity.


In the next section, I'll provide specific examples of high-performing abandoned cart email subject lines that effectively tap into FOMO and drive action. Let these examples serve as inspiration for crafting your own subject lines that instill a fear of missing out and increase engagement with your abandoned cart recovery emails.


Examples of high-performing subject lines


Crafting compelling abandoned cart email subject lines requires creativity and an understanding of what resonates with your audience. To inspire your subject line creation, let's explore specific examples of subject lines that have proven to be successful in enticing recipients to open the emails and take action.


Subject lines that convey urgency


"Last chance to reclaim your cart and save!"


Explanation: This subject line creates a sense of urgency by emphasizing that time is running out. It prompts recipients to take immediate action to avoid missing out on the opportunity to reclaim their carts and secure the associated savings.


"Don't miss out! Your items are disappearing soon!"


Explanation: By using phrases like "don't miss out" and "disappearing soon," this subject line instills a sense of urgency and motivates recipients to open the email promptly. The fear of losing their desired items drives them to revisit their abandoned carts.


Subject lines that create curiosity


"Your cart is begging for your attention..."


Explanation: This subject line generates curiosity by suggesting that the abandoned cart has an urgent need for attention. It piques recipients' interest, compelling them to open the email to discover what specifically requires their attention.


"Unlock the mystery in your abandoned cart!"


Explanation: By referring to the abandoned cart as a mystery, this subject line sparks curiosity. Recipients are enticed to open the email and uncover what exciting or surprising items await them in their abandoned carts.


Subject lines that emphasize value or savings


"Exclusive discount on your abandoned cart items!"


Explanation: This subject line communicates a clear value proposition by highlighting an exclusive discount. It entices recipients with the promise of additional savings, making it more enticing for them to revisit their abandoned carts.


"Claim your cart and enjoy free shipping!"


Explanation: By emphasizing free shipping, this subject line provides an additional incentive to recipients. It communicates a tangible benefit and encourages them to take action to secure their cart items without incurring any additional shipping costs.


Subject lines that leverage personalization


"Hey [Name], your cart misses you!"


Explanation: By addressing recipients by their name, this subject line adds a personal touch. It creates a sense of familiarity and establishes a connection, making recipients more likely to open the email and engage with their abandoned carts.


"We saved your cart, [Name]! Come back for a surprise!"


Explanation: This subject line acknowledges that the recipient's cart has been saved, creating a personalized experience. The mention of a surprise adds an element of intrigue, motivating recipients to revisit their abandoned carts to discover what surprise awaits them.


Subject lines that include a clear call to action


"Click to reclaim your cart and complete your purchase!"


Explanation: This subject line provides a clear and direct call to action, explicitly instructing recipients to click through and reclaim their abandoned carts. The use of active verbs like "click" and "reclaim" encourages immediate action, increasing the chances of cart recovery.


"Take action now and secure your cart items!"


Explanation: By urging recipients to "take action now," this subject line instills a sense of urgency and prompts immediate engagement. The mention of securing their cart items emphasizes the value of completing the purchase promptly.


Each of these subject lines successfully taps into psychological triggers such as urgency, curiosity, value, personalization, and clear calls to action. These elements are effective in capturing recipients' attention, compelling them to open your emails, and ultimately driving them back to their abandoned carts.


Remember that the success of your abandoned cart email subject lines depends on understanding your target audience and testing different variations to see which ones resonate the most. What works for one business may not work for another, so it's important to analyze your email metrics and make data-driven decisions.


As you craft your own abandoned cart email subject lines, consider combining elements from the examples above to create subject lines that are tailored to your unique audience and brand voice.


Experiment with different strategies, such as incorporating personalized elements, highlighting value or savings, creating a sense of urgency, or sparking curiosity. Track the performance of each subject line variation to determine what drives the highest open rates and conversion rates.


Testing, optimizing, and iterating for better results


To maximize the effectiveness of your abandoned cart email subject lines, it's crucial to test and optimize them over time. By analyzing the performance of different subject line variations, you can gain insights into what resonates most with your audience and continually improve your cart recovery efforts.


Here are some best practices for testing and optimizing your abandoned cart email subject lines:


A/B testing

Conduct A/B tests by sending different subject line variations to smaller segments of your email list. Compare metrics such as open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates to determine which subject lines generate the highest engagement and drive the most cart recoveries.


Test one variable at a time

When conducting A/B tests, focus on changing one element of the subject line at a time. This could include the wording, tone, personalization, or the sense of urgency conveyed. By isolating variables, you can identify the specific factors that impact the performance of your subject lines.


Analyze data and metrics

Regularly analyze the data from your email marketing platform to gain insights into the performance of your abandoned cart email subject lines. Look for patterns, trends, and key metrics to understand which subject lines are driving the most opens, clicks, and conversions.


Consider audience segmentation

Segment your email list based on different customer characteristics or behaviors. This allows you to tailor your subject lines to specific segments and test their effectiveness with different audience groups. For example, you could test subject lines for first-time customers versus repeat customers.


Learn from successful campaigns

Analyze successful campaigns in the past and identify subject lines that generated high engagement and cart recoveries. Use those subject lines as a starting point for creating new variations and optimizing future campaigns.


Remember that testing and optimizing your abandoned cart email subject lines is an ongoing process. Continuously monitor and adapt your strategies based on the results you obtain.


By understanding your audience, experimenting with different approaches, and leveraging data-driven insights, you can refine your subject lines and improve their performance over time.


Avoiding common mistakes in subject line crafting


Crafting compelling abandoned cart email subject lines requires careful attention to detail. While there are effective strategies to increase engagement, it's equally important to avoid common mistakes that can hinder the success of your subject lines.


By steering clear of these pitfalls, you can ensure that your subject lines have the best chance of capturing recipients' attention and driving them to open your emails. Here are some common mistakes to avoid when crafting abandoned cart email subject lines:


Being too vague or ambiguous

A subject line should provide recipients with a clear idea of what they can expect when they open the email. Avoid being overly vague or ambiguous, as it can confuse or disinterest recipients. Instead, be specific and highlight the value or benefit of revisiting their abandoned carts.


Example of a vague subject line: "Check this out!"


Improved subject line: "20% off your abandoned cart items - Limited time offer!"


Using spammy or misleading language

Avoid using language that may be perceived as spam or misleading. This includes excessive use of exclamation marks, all caps, or promising unrealistic offers. Such practices can damage your brand's reputation and lead to recipients disregarding your emails.


Example of a spammy subject line: "AMAZING DEALS!!!!!!"


Improved subject line: "Reclaim your cart for an exclusive discount!"


Neglecting personalization

Personalization can significantly enhance the effectiveness of your subject lines. Neglecting to include the recipient's name or any personal touch can make your emails feel impersonal and decrease engagement. Make an effort to incorporate personalization wherever possible.


Example of a non-personalized subject line: "Don't miss out on your abandoned cart items!"


Improved subject line: "Hey [Name], your cart misses you! Come back and save!"


Overcomplicating the subject line

Keep your subject lines concise and easy to understand. Long and convoluted subject lines may be overwhelming or difficult to grasp quickly. Aim for clarity and simplicity to capture recipients' attention effectively.


Example of an overcomplicated subject line: "Act now and reclaim your abandoned cart before the offer expires and your items are gone forever!"


Improved subject line: "Last chance to reclaim your cart and save!"


Ignoring testing and optimization

Testing and optimizing your subject lines is essential for long-term success. Neglecting this process can hinder your ability to understand what resonates with your audience and improve your results over time. Make it a habit to regularly test different subject line variations and analyze the data to refine your approach.


Avoiding these common mistakes and implementing best practices in subject line crafting will enhance the performance of your abandoned cart email campaigns.


By ensuring clarity, avoiding spammy language, incorporating personalization, keeping it simple, and continuously testing, you can increase the effectiveness of your subject lines and drive higher engagement with your abandoned cart recovery emails.


Abandoned Cart Email Subject Lines Can Bring Back Your Customers


Creating abandoned cart email subject lines that customers can't resist is an important tactic for winning back their attention. These subject lines have a special ability to grab people's interest, make them open emails, and bring them back to their forgotten shopping carts.


You can make your subject lines even more powerful by using techniques like urgency, personalization, value, and curiosity. These methods will help increase the number of people who open your emails and ultimately lead to more sales that may have been lost otherwise.


Don't forget to test and improve your subject lines based on the data you gather. By analyzing the results and understanding your unique audience, you can tailor your approach to make it even more effective.


With captivating subject lines for your abandoned cart emails, you'll be able to reconnect with customers, boost your revenue, and strengthen your overall efforts to recover those abandoned carts.


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