Product page abandonment emails remind consumers what they were looking at earlier. They're similar to cart abandonment emails, but not nearly as popular, though they ought to be.

You've probably heard a lot about how today's on-the-go consumers have shorter attention spans, are more reliant on mobile devices and are constantly tapping from site to site to find the best deals. The barrage of data these shifting consumers generate can be overwhelming and leave you struggling to figure out which programs will help you keep up with these shoppers, maintain engagement and get them to complete an order.

Triggering a reminder email when a shopper abandons a product page can go a long way toward addressing these issues.

Cart reminder emails, a close relative to product page reminders, are already a popular option for marketers. Many consumers expect to receive a shopping cart reminder email when they leave items in their cart, and retailers know these messages can motivate the shopper to revisit the cart and complete the order.

So why have so few retailers embraced the concept of applying the same strategy when product pages are abandoned?

According to Bronto's "Revenue Rescue" study, only 15 percent of retailers are sending a product page abandonment reminder. While this percentage may seem low, the rate is not far off from the percentage of retailers sending cart reminders just a few years ago. Still, product page reminders are not as frequently discussed as other automated messages and I often see retailers who squirm at the idea of sending them.

To help you to see the value of product page reminders and to decrease the apprehension, I want to tackle three of the most frequently asked questions I hear about these messages.

Will it creep out my customer?

As with any email that (Read more...) behavioral or profile data to personalize the message, product page abandonment reminders have the potential to creep out your customer. It's your job to use that data responsibly and understand your customers well enough to know what level of personalization works for them. Just because you have the data doesn't mean you need to act on all of it.

Unlike cart reminders, where the shopper has shown they are considering purchasing an item by placing it in the cart, product page abandonment shows less of a commitment to buy. Product page reminders often take a product category level approach to content personalization rather than showing the specific item that was browsed. The focus of these messages should be on keeping the consumer shopping. This differs from cart reminders, where the aim is to get the consumer to take one more step and complete a purchase. Instead of focusing on price points and incentives, promote related products, shopping services, returns and other ways the customer can shop, such as in a store, on an app or by calling customer service for help with questions.

Will it conflict with my cart reminders?

Unlike shopping cart reminders, which often see strong performance when sent soon after items are left in a cart, product page reminders can benefit from a bit of a delay. The "strike while the iron is hot" strategy for cart reminders may be too pushy for some shoppers who only browsed a product page. Allowing some time for the shopper to revisit your site and potentially cart the item will ensure you are not putting too much pressure on them. You're allowing them to take the next step on the purchase path at their own pace. Be sure to adjust cart reminder trigger rules to trump any product page abandonment triggers so the shopper doesn't receive two emails with conflicting messages about where they are in the shopping process.

Is it too complex to launch?

Setting up the trigger and automating the message doesn't require much heavy lifting. More time should be spent on your content strategy. Test product-specific and product category content to see which resonates most with product page abandoners. Some segments of your shoppers may respond best to a customer-service themed message that avoids any direct product or product category level information.

Finding new ways to keep your shoppers engaged can be challenging, but exploring new ways to automate messages across the purchase path can help you find key moments when shoppers may be disconnecting from the shopping experience. By using product page reminders, you can keep the conversation going with shoppers who are interested in shopping but still deciding what they may want to actually purchase.

As the holidays approach, site traffic and product page abandonment rates will start to soar. Getting your product page abandonment strategy in place before the peak season can help you boost holiday sales by giving your customers an easy way to revisit your site and continue shopping.

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