The aim of abandoned cart campaigns is to remind your potential customers of the items they left in their carts and encourage them to complete their purchase. With these campaigns you can address your customers' most common concerns behind cart abandonment such as high shipping costs, uncertainty about the shipment or payment methods. You can address these concerns, for instance, by providing free shipment vouchers to your customers or by creation an FAQ section on your website.
To motivate your customers to purchase the products they left in their carts, you may use best practices such as the scarcity marketing strategy (i.e. encouraging your customers to buy a product before someone else does) or you can include customer testimonials in your campaigns.
In these cases, relevance is key. You need to act fast the sooner customers receive your message, the more likely they will convert. Interactions is here to assist you in achieving higher revenue goals.
What is the difference Interactions and Automation Center abandoned cart programs?
With abandoned cart programs built in Interactions, you can react to your customers’ actions much faster and define the length of the session, too. While Automation Center-based abandoned cart programs (triggered by a data field change or an external event) have a delay of 3-5 hours, Interactions processes events in real time. You can specify the delay as you wish: it can be 3 minutes, 15 minutes, 30 minutes or an hour. You are in charge.
The reason for the delay in the Automation Center is that contact matching is based on cookies. Predict processes session data and identifies contacts, the data only arrives at the contact database after that. The contact data field changes at this moment and it may trigger your Automation Center abandoned cart program.
Interactions processes events in real time, which means that contact matching cannot be performed based on cookies. Only those contacts are identified whose ID (i.e. either the external ID or email address) is included in the event. This usually happens when the customer explicitly logs into your website or navigates to your store by clicking the relevant email (it depends on your implementation). Furthermore, you can also personalize your messages with product attributes in abandoned cart campaigns built with Interactions.
As a result, the target audience reached by Interactions might be smaller but the expected conversion rate will be higher due to sending more relevant messages (as you don’t have to wait for 3-5 hours before sending your campaigns).
To build abandoned cart programs in Interactions, you need the following:
- Interactions' advanced functionalities (i.e. historical decision which is available for Advanced and Max AI packages or as an add-on).
- Web Extend implementation (Interactions consumes raw events coming live from your website and it needs an effective contact identification method. Therefore, it is very important that Web Extend should be implemented without errors because these might prevent Interactions from working correctly).
- A regularly updated product catalog (please check the data quality of your product catalog because the more errors it contains, the more likely it is that Interactions will not work properly). The item IDs in the product catalog have to be identical with the IDs coming from your website because the personalization service retrieves the product IDs from the events but it matches the IDs with the details included in your product catalog.
- A dynamic product block that can display the abandoned items.
- A pilot agreement for the improved personalization service.
Building an abandoned cart program in Interactions
In the following example, we will build an abandoned cart program that:
- targets contacts who:
- viewed a product page at least 3 times in the last 5 minutes,
- have not purchased any item since they have entered the program,
- opted-in for receiving marketing materials.
- contains an A/B test node which splits the program into three different paths:
- contacts proceeding along the first branch will wait for 15 minutes,
- contacts traveling through the second branch will wait for 30 minutes,
- contacts continuing their journey on the third branch will wait for an hour.
- ensures that contacts can receive your campaign only once a week,
- sends an abandoned cart email campaign to your contacts.
This abandoned cart program will look like as follows:
To create an abandoned cart program, proceed as follows:
1. Navigate to Automation > Interactions and click Create Program.
2. Select the Web Extend event trigger and choose the Updated cart trigger event.
This event is triggered when a contact adds or removes an item from their cart. If their cart is empty (the contact removed every item from it), then the message will not be sent to this contact.
3. Optionally, you can add a Decision node to your program to ensure that you target actively engaged visitors. Configure it as follows:
a. Select the Event happened type.
b. Choose the Viewed product page Web Extend event.
c. Specify the required values. (In the example below, we targeted customers who viewed a product page at least 3 times in the last 5 minutes.)
4. Optionally, you can add an A/B test node to your program and configure it as required. (In the example below we created three paths and set them to the following values: 33%, 33% and 34%.)
5. Add Wait nodes to your program and configure them as required. (In the example below, we added Wait nodes to each path and set them to wait for 15 minutes, 30 minutes and an hour.)
If you set the Wait nodes to different intervals, then you can easily decide which worked the best for your customers by checking the results.
6. Add a Decision node to each path and configure it as follows:
a. Choose the Event did not happen type.
b. Select the Web Extend Purchase and Updated cart events and set the Timeframe to Since the trigger event.
Please consider the following:
- This node ensures that:
- customers abandoned their carts without purchasing anything and
- the Updated cart event that triggered the program is the last cart update that happened, so they will only receive your message once.
- If a contact updates their cart multiple times, then each Updated cart event will trigger the same abandoned cart program (e.g. if a contact adds 5 items to the cart and later abandons it, then it will count as 5 Updated cart events and each one will trigger this program). This node is needed to avoid sending the campaign multiple times to your contacts. For more information on how multiple events that belong to the same contact travel through a program, see this Example.
7. Add a Decision node to each path and configure it as follows:
a. Choose the Included in segment type.
b. Select a segment that contains contacts whose opt-in status is true.
Triggered emails ignore the contacts’ opt-in status by default, so this node ensures that only those contacts will receive your campaign whose opt-in status is true.
8. Add a Participation check node to each path and select the If the following time has passed since this contact last proceeded along the Yes path option and set it to 7 days.
To ensure that contacts receive only one abandoned cart, browse or check-out page campaign per week (it may come in handy if you have multiple campaigns), switch the Make this check available in other programs toggle and select an existing Participation check or create a new one.
9. Add a Send email node to each path and select your campaign.
Personalizing your content with product attributes
This feature is currently on Pilot release for a limited number of clients only. If you are interested in participating in the Pilot phase, please speak to your Success Manager.
With Personalization rules, you can personalize your content by using the attributes of the products customers left in their carts. You can use any field from your product catalog (e.g. title, image URL, link, brand, color, description, etc.).
You need to have a dynamic product block (i.e. a block that includes an image and at least 3 editable fields). This block will be repeated based on the number of items your customers left in their carts.
Please consider the following:
- If your template was created by Emarsys, then you don’t have to update it.
- If you use your own template, then you need to update it as described in Updating your own template for Product catalog update Tactics.
This is how a dynamic product block looks like:
Personalizing your abandoned cart campaign with product attributes
To personalize your abandoned cart campaign with product attributes, proceed as follows:
Please take the following into consideration:
- Currently, the dynamic product block can display one item per block and show a maximum of 10 items.
- The number of items displayed in your campaign depends on the number of products customers left in their carts.
- The personalization service retrieves the item ID from the Web Extend event that triggers the Interactions program but it matches the item ID with the product attributes from your product catalog.
1. Navigate to Channels > Email Campaigns and open your email campaign.
2. Select the dynamic product block and click the Product Source icon.
3. Choose the Abandoned cart Triggered Email Event.
4. You can personalize the dynamic product block with any fields within your product catalog as follows:
a. Select the Title, Description or Price field or the CTA button, click the Personalization icon, then choose the Product catalog field you would like to use.
b. To personalize the image:
i. Select the image and click the Image properties icon.
ii. Click the Personalization icon and select the Image Product catalog field.
- Only events coming from logged-in sessions can trigger abandoned cart messages. Otherwise, contacts should be identified in another way, for example, if contacts navigate to your website by clicking the relevant email (it depends on your implementation).
- If you want to link to your cart (checkout page) directly, then please note that the current solution uses the same data as the predict_last_abandoned_products field (however, it retrieves information from the event, not from the Predict fields, as the contact field can cause a delay of 3-5 hours).
- You need to have a dynamic product block. Currently, the product block can display one item per row and a maximum of 10 products. The order of items is the same as their order in the cart (it depends on your website but usually the first item in the campaign is the last product that was added to the cart).
- Currently, you can only test your program by imitating an abandoned cart action with test contacts.