4 Cart Abandon Subject Lines – with Results

Abandon cart recovery rocketBeyond the welcome email the second most popular automated email is a cart abandon email. For good reason, they bring in revenue.

And with low cost platforms like Moosend creating cart abandon emails is easy – there is no longer any barrier to adding one.

Increasing your cart abandonment email revenue is one of the most efficient ways to minimize loss and promote growth.

So, where do you start?


The abandon figures from statista shows ecommerce cart abandonment rates. A phenomenon that marketers have been battling for years.

Cart Abandon Rate Benchmark Trend

To get the most out of your cart abandonment emails, focus on the first thing your customers see in their inbox: your email’s subject line.

What makes successful cart abandon subject lines?

Brands with a high volume of transactions can use A/B testing to tune their subject lines.

Split testing automated email subject lines is appealing as the winning subject line is simply applied to the ongoing campaign, with the gain continuously compounding.

Contrast with A/B split testing of broadcast campaigns. The winning subject line can be difficult to apply future campaigns.

A high volume of emails is needed to get statistical significance on any split test. Because of this split testing is not practical on low volume automated emails for many brands.

Following common-sense rules and best practices is a pragmatic alternative to test for effective abandon cart subject lines.

Marilia Dimitriou from Moosend was kind enough to share the following advice and examples.

Starting with some ways to create impressive “impression triggers” that convert:

  • Give your subject line urgency that will highlight the need for immediate action.

Example: “Hurry – we can’t hold your Shopping Bag!” (Diesel)

  • Make your subject line into an irresistible conversion tool through offers.

Example: “Extra 20% just for you, ending soon.” (Kenneth Cole)

  • Use assumptive subject lines to make your email sound like a friendly reminder.

Example: “Forget something?” (Under Armour)

  • Don’t forget to keep it short and on point

Example: “A gentle reminder” (Swarovski)

Cart Abandon Subject Lines Examples with Performance Metrics

1. Cult Beauty

Subject line: “You Left Something In Your Basket – can we help?” (source)

Cult Beauty A/B tested their abandoned cart subject lines and found that it gave the best open and conversion rates.

Cult Beauty Abandon Cart Email

(Example courtesy email library Email Tuna)

Their new cart abandon subject line comprises of two powerful and unique parts.

The simple yet effective reminder: “You left something in your basket”.

The reminder element of abandon cart subject lines is commonly used by marketers.

Look at four emails I received on a single day from four different brands:

Inbox Cart Abandon Subject Lines

Subject lines with presumptive closes rely on the idea that your customers have already decided to purchase your products but left due to an interruption.

The second part that Cult Beauty added is rather more unique.

“Can We Help?” opens up a channel of communication, the customer service emails. Not all obstacles to purchase can be resolved in the abandon email. Inviting customers to contact the brand and get help is a smart way to turn conversation into conversion.

Open and Conversion Rate Performance

Cult Beauty Abandon Cart Email Performance MetricsWith a 54.34% open rate, the Cult Beauty achieved a good 15.95% conversion rate.

Cult Beauty open rate is higher than cart abandon benchmark statistics, helping drive the conversion rate to almost 16%.

 2. Vehicle Rent

Subject Line: “Your Rental Quote.”  (source)

Compared to the previous example, Vehicle Rent uses a short and simple subject line to increase its open and conversion rates.

Simple subject lines work exceptionally well since they can convey the message in a clear way that complex subject lines don’t.

According to Devin Pickell, some of the best emails have simple one- or two-word subject lines.

Favoring simplicity over complexity can really make a difference and solve your cart abandonment issue.

Open and Conversion Rate Performance

Vehicle Rent Abandon Cart Email Performance MetricsThe 65.34% open rate shows that simple messages can have a high open rate without losing their converting capabilities.

Once the email is opened powerful abandoned cart email copy is needed to gain conversion and lower your cart abandonment rate.

3. Buy Fencing Direct

Subject Line: “Your Buy Fencing Direct Basket”  (source)

Another simple cart abandon subject line from Buy Fencing Direct.

Along with simplicity, the brand directly addresses the customer by starting with “Your”. Making it clear this message is about their personal activity and not generic. Catching the recipients’ attention and making them open.

Open and Conversion Rate Performance

The open and conversion rates for Buy Fencing Direct are even higher than the previous two examples.Buy Fencing Direct Abandon Cart Email Performance Metrics

With an open rate of 32.73%, personalization can be one of the most efficient ways to make your subject lines convert more by adding simple words that address your customers.

4. Skandium

Subject Line: Thinking about, Egg Footstool? (source)

Skandium tested including an abandoned product name in the subject. This increased click through rate by 27%.

The product name in the subject line makes the email highly relevant gets subject line standout in the inbox.

It’s clear for a customer what the email is about, bringing them back to consider the product again.

Open and Conversion Rate Performance

Now, let’s look at Skandium’s subject line performance.

Skandium Cart Email Performance MetricsSkandium tested different subject lines. The best results were when the product name is included in the subject line.


Keep it simple and be helpful. The best way to sell is to overcome the blockages to conversion rather than just shout “buy now” as loud as you can.

Ideally personalize the subject line based on the abandoned product(s). Address the causes of cart abandonment in your email content.

If you’re taking thousands of online orders each month then you’ve enough volume to allow A/B testing. But if you don’t have high volumes, all is not lost learn from the examples in this article and follow a common-sense approach.