No checkout process or conversion funnel is perfect. In most instances, a large percentage of your site traffic that enters your conversion funnel will abandon the process, resulting in a significant loss in revenue for your business. However, in recent years, tools like email remarketing are becoming increasingly more popular for targeting these abandons and bringing them back to the website to complete their sale or conversion. Listrak, an email marketing service specializing in shopping cart abandonment recovery, recently released a whitepaper outlining the evolution of email remarketing over the course of 2012. The whitepaper compiles Listrak's findings from their annual study on the Internet Retailer 1000 Companies and how they address the problem of shopping cart abandonment through email remarketing. Here are 4 significant takeaways from the study: 1. Email remarketing is on the rise According to Listrak's report, the amount of Internet Retailer 1000 Companies that use email remarketing to target shopping cart abandons increased by a whopping 30% in 2012. This increase illustrates that email remarketing truly is on the rise and is becoming an online marketing standard for digital retailers. Considering this increase in email remarketing, it is safe to say that your competition may be contemplating email remarketing if they are not already using it. This not a great scenario for those who are not following up with abandons through email remarketing since it is likely that your competition is scooping up all those users who were simply browsing yesterday, but willing to buy today. 2. Message series are preferred over a single Message Another interesting statistic from Listrak's findings claims that online retailers prefer sending a series of two or three emails rather than a single message. Over 2012, there was a 19.5% decrease in Internet Retailer 1000 companies that send a single email when retargeting shopping cart abandons. Instead, retailers are increasingly sending a series of messages that present multiple offers and incentives to the user for them to ultimately convert. Interestingly, the number of retailers sending a series of two emails increased by 7.6%, while the number of retailers sending a series of three emails increased by 207%! Retailers are clearly jumping over the two message strategy straight to the three message series. This is likely due to the relatively consistent conversion rates from the second to third email. Listrak reports that conversion rates do not typically decrease from second to third email and tend to remain around 10%. 3. The sooner sent, the better Timing has an extremely significant impact on the success of retargeting emails. Send the email too late and the user may no longer be interested in your product or could have gone to a competitor. Send the email too soon and you'll waste your shot on a user who is still in a research or browsing mindset. However, Listrak's review of the Internet Retailer 1000 Companies shows that retailers are increasingly preferring campaigns delivered soon after the point of abandonment. 67% of the IR1000 send their first email campaign within 24 hours of abandonment - an increase of 10.4% over 2012. 4. Deals are on the decline Another significant 2012 change that Listrak noted is the decrease in discounts and deals in retargeting emails. Traditionally speaking, remarketing emails often contain deals and incentives that may not normally be available onsite in order to tip users into coming back and purchasing. However, despite that methodology, the appearance of deals in retargeting emails decreased over 2012. Listrak reports that, within retargeting email series, deals in the companies' first emails have decreased by 17%, by 5.4% in second, and 7.6% in the third. The best explanation for this decrease is that mere email reminders are sufficient enough to trigger a conversion without an extra deal or discount. However, despite this evolution over the course of 2012, it is still recommend to use increasingly appealing incentives in your retargeting emails. While the first email of a series may be able to trigger a conversion by simply reminding the user, second and third emails should offer increasingly appealing offers in order to keep the user engaged with your brand and product over time. Does you uses email remarketing for your business or clients? Let us know of any trends or changes you've noticed in shopping cart abandonment recovery in the comments section below. You can also tweet at us @BFMweb
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