Create an abandoned cart email

Learn to create and design an effective abandoned cart email to help recapture those lost carts.


An abandoned cart email is a triggered campaign displaying the latest contents of a customer's cart.

You automatically send abandoned cart emails using programs designed to detect if the customer has completed the purchase, and if not, the abandoned cart campaign is sent.

In this article, we'll design a basic abandoned cart email. Feel free to follow along, but if you're more experienced, you might want to be more creative with your campaign.


Step 1: Set up

To create your abandoned cart email:

  1. In Dotdigital, go to Email > Automation > Triggered campaign content.
  2. Select ADD NEW.
  3. Choose a template or start from scratch with a blank template.
  4. Enter a name and choose a location.
  5. Enter your campaign details.
  6. Select SAVE & CONTINUE.


Step 2: Design

To design an abandoned cart email:

  1. In EasyEditor, drag a Title block onto the canvas.
  2. Select the block, then enter your title.
  3. Drag a Text block onto the canvas.
  4. Select the text block, then enter some text for your abandoned cart campaign.
  5. From the Ecommerce building blocks, drag an Abandoned cart block onto the
  6. Select the Abandoned cart block, then expand the Price options drop-down menu, and choose how you want the price to display. In this example, we'll select Show special price with price.


  7. To preview your campaign, select PREVIEW.


  8. Select SAVE & CONTINUE.

  9. On the plain text campaign page, select SAVE & CONTINUE.
    You can't create a plain text version for abandoned cart campaigns because they contain advanced personalisation, which is not available in plain text.

Want to do more?

At this point you might be looking to do a bit more with your campaign than we do in this basic guide. Check out our Extras at the bottom of this article to learn how to do more.

- Add tracking analytics
- Style your button

Step 3: Test

You can send your abandoned cart campaign to your test contacts or run an Inbox and spam filter test to test it looks exactly how you want it. In this example, we'll send to text contacts.

To learn more about the Inbox and spam filter test, check out the article Use the inbox and spam filter test.

To send a test abandoned cart campaign:

  1. For Send to your test contacts, select CHOOSE CONTACTS.
  2. For Test send, select The HTML version only.
    This is because abandoned cart campaigns only work as HTML.
  3. Select SELECT TEST ADDRESS, then find and select the test email address you want to send to. You can SELECT MORE if you need to add more test addresses.
    If you need to add a test address, select + NEW TEST ADDRESS and follow the instructions.
  4. Select TEST SEND.
  5. Select CONTINUE.
  6. Check the details of your campaign.

That's it! You've set up an abandoned cart email. You can now add it to your abandoned cart program.

Extra: Add tracking analytics

If you want to track the performance of your abandoned cart emails, you can add UTM tracking parameters.

To add UTM tracking parameters to your abandoned cart email:

  1. On the EasyEditor canvas, select the Abandoned cart block.
  2. In the side panel, expand the Analytics menu.
  3. For Source, enter your abandoned cart email's source.
    This needs to identify where the traffic came from. For example, this might be Dotdigital.
  4. For Medium, enter the type of channel driving the traffic.
    This needs to identify the channel driving the traffic. For example, this might be Abandoned cart mail.
  5. For Campaign, enter a name for this abandoned cart email.
    This might be the name of your campaign or specific product recommendation, for example, off_piste.


Extra: Style your button

By default, the abandoned cart button inherits the styling of your campaign. But if you'd like to customise it further, here's how.

To style the button of your abandoned cart block:

  1. On the EasyEditor canvas, select the Abandoned cart block.
  2. In the side panel, expand the Button settings menu.
  3. Choose either Button or Border depending on what you want to edit. You can then edit the following settings:
    Button settings:
    Label How to use
    Colour Enter a HEX colour code, or use the colour picker, to choose a colour for your button.
    Alignment Expand the alignment drop-down menu, then choose either Right, Left, Centre, or Full width.
    Padding Enter padding values, in pixels, for both the horizontal and vertical padding.
    Minimum width Enter a minimum width, in pixels, for your button.
    Border settings:
    Label How to use
    Colour Enter a HEX colour code, or use the colour picker, to choose a colour for your border.
    Border width Enter a value, in pixels, to set the thickness of your border.
    Border radius Enter a value, in pixels, to set the radius of your border.


Next steps

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