Best Practices

Recovering Abandoned Carts with SMS Marketing

Transform cart abandoners into assets: Boost recovery with SMS marketing for cost-effective, high-ROI impacts on your business's bottom line.

Mathew Gorka

By Mathew Gorka

July 3, 2023

7 min read

Recovering Abandoned Carts with SMS Marketing

We all have the goal of driving more revenue to our business. Sometimes, marketers get tunnel vision on top-of-funnel marketing (see what we did there) like brand awareness and prospecting. New leads are integral to the growth and success of your business. But, what if we told you there’s tons of value already in your pipeline…and they’re already engaged! There are few ways to better boost your sales than recovering abandoned carts, and there's no better way to do it than with SMS.

The Value of Cart Abandonment Recovery

The fact is that cart abandoners present massive value add to your business. Raising cart recovery metrics can be the bane of any marketer's existence, but they don’t have to be. Instead of getting frustrated with almost-converters, look at this massive opportunity as a way to impact your company’s bottomline. Best of all, abandoned cart recovery can be a low cost alternative to prospecting campaigns that deliver unpredictable and inconsistent results. Low cost engagement with cart abandoners means high ROI.

Global cart abandonment metrics state that roughly 3 of every 4 customers going through your checkout flow will abandon their cart. If you’ve made it this far we hope you know this, but cart abandoners are customers who add items to their cart but never complete the checkout process. What you may not know, is that cart abandoners are responsible for almost $20 billion in lost revenue annually.

Taking the First Step to Recovering Abandoned Carts

The first step is to examine your checkout flow. Look for friction, or ways that your checkout process can be expedited. If they’re a repeat customer you can auto-populate their checkout information like name, address, or payment info, depending on your data policies and customer consent. Also, if you offer things like money-back guarantees or hassle-free returns, or free shipping this is a great place to share that with a simple badge. You want to help customers get over that hump.

Still, no matter how seamless you make the process, there will inevitably be drop-off in the form of cart-abandoners. If you’re using any analytics tool, like Google Analytics, you can view the drop-offs on each page of the checkout cycle. Understanding where the drop-off is happening is the first step. Now it’s time to gently remind and nudge your customers to complete the sale. The best way to do this is through SMS.

Using SMS to Execute Abandoned Cart Recovery

Do you already have your customers phone number and permission to text them? If you’re not sure, it would be worthwhile to learn more about opt-in and express written consent. If you need help growing your SMS marketing list click here for an article with tips and tricks. Assuming you do, as you should, it is time to set up some automations. Marketing automations empower you customer engagement and drive revenue for your business while lowering overhead of manual, tedious tasks. Most ecommerce platforms like Shopify will work well with Helios.

Within your business texting platform you should have the ability to segment. Helios makes segmentation easy and seamless so if you can’t, we suggest trying out a platform like ours. With your cart abandoners segmented out, it’s time to strategize on when to reach them and what to say. As we said, starting with SMS is the first step. A not-so-fun fact, mobile shoppers own the highest cart abandon rate (close to 90%). Getting your message in front of them on the same device is a small but powerful first step.

SMS marketing is widely considered the most powerful form of customer communication today. Why? Because 95% of SMS marketing communications are opened and/or replied to within the first 3 minutes of delivery. In recent polls by SMS Comparison, it was proven that 90% of people prefer to receive SMS advertisements over direct calls or email. Other polls state the power of SMS as a preferred contact medium for loyalty, product releases and announcements, and other related customer engagement initiatives.

With your audience segmented out and your company prepared for an abandoned cart recovery campaign, it’s time to drum up some content and offers. To start, consider starting by figuring out what offer your company can reasonably afford to incentivize purchase. Discounting is a strong factor in triggering a response. Pairing that offer with an expiration, like ‘10% off for the next 10 hours’ is a great way to make this method even more effective.

Using SMS Personalization and Automation to Power Abandoned Cart Recovery

It’s not always as easy as a one-off text message. SMS marketing automations are a balancing act: they need to be consistent, while still respecting the choice of the customer. Bombarding a customer with abandoned cart texts will only push them further away. We recommend A/B testing all things, including your messaging cadence. Stringing together multiple SMS marketing messages is called a ‘flow.’ Helios allows you to set up these automated flows effortlessly.

Personalization is another great way to re-engage your audience, specifically, your cart abandoners. Whether you initiate with an automated message, or a full on automated flow, be sure to pay attention to your customers’ response. It may be beneficial to have an individual that replies to engaged SMS customers on a one-on-one basis. Things like personalized suggestions, question and answer, or even just a personal touch go a long way in driving engagement, sales, and retention.

You’re reaching your customers on their terms with SMS marketing. Rest assured that this is the best place to start. SMS costs are very affordable, especially with Helios. You know your messages will land and be read quickly, which is another benefit. As time goes on from the moment of cart abandonment, the likelihood of recovery dwindles. You want to be in the front of your customers’ minds. It doesn’t take a doctorate in behavioral economics to know that you want to “strike while the iron’s hot.” Bypassing email filters, less frequent email checks, and multiple accounts is critical to the success of your abandoned cart recovery campaign.

Text message marketing that converts.

Turn your leads into customers. Helios provides all the tools to help you craft perfect SMS campaigns and automate the rest.

Text to join