Salesforce data show that 60% of shoppers who received personalized content after abandoning their shopping carts returned and made a purchase.

Sending out a personalized e-mail soon after an online shopper abandons his shopping cart can help a retailer bolster its bottom line.

That’s according to the Predictive Intelligence Benchmark Report from Salesforce, which examined roughly 140 million interactions between consumers and Salesforce retail customers.

Salesforce’s data found that 15% of all retailers incorporate personalized cart abandonment e-mails into their marketing strategies. And 60% of those e-mails resulted in a sale within 24 hours of going out, with those shoppers spending an average of $36 per click.

Customizing an e-mail’s message using data a company already has can help increase conversion, says Kyle Lacy, director of content marketing and research for Salesforce Marketing Cloud.

“Personalized transactional e-mails are extremely influential if you’re using it in a way that drives people to buy,” he says. “It’s really about how do you take the data you have already about the consumer and use it proactively to drive revenue because you’re using content that you weren’t using before.”


Lacy says there’s any number of reasons why shoppers abandon their carts and a retailer that sends an e-mail along with product suggestions based on a shopper’s interactions with the site can provide that nudge needed to turn someone who was  browsing into buyer. “What happens if the browser fails or what happens if you forget you were going to buy and that cart abandonment e-mail is the one that drives you to do it,” he says. “I think its front-of-mind awareness that drives a lot of it.”

Lacy says the report’s findings reinforce the notion that it’s no longer enough to simply have a web site or send out an e-mail, that customers want brands to tailor offerings to their individual interests.

“It’s up to marketers to build systems that allow users to interact with systems the way they want to do it, not the way you want to do it,” he says. “Consumers are actually saying the same thing: that marketers need to move from being campaign managers to experience managers. Using content as a means to personalize an experience is the beginning of it. We’re realizing that the future is very much based on our ability to do this.”