When you create and send shopping cart abandonment emails, it’s important only to test a specific element of the email at one time. Even if you change the call to action, color scheme and layout of the inside of your email and get a more successful click-through rate than the original template, you haven’t accomplished anything because you don’t understand what specific element led to the higher click-through.
Pick one thing about your email that you want to test. No matter how small the difference between the original and the test email, it might make a difference to your subscribers. A popular test is subject line testing. Here’s a subject line test we did with our regular GameChanger newsletter:
The control subject line is Sample A and the variable subject line is Sample B. Since we tested subject line, the result we wanted to see was unique open rate. We also opted for the system to send the email with the winning subject line when the specified test period was complete.
The winner was Sample B – but not by a significant amount. If we had chosen to determine the winner manually, we could send to either the control or variable subject line since there wasn’t a significant difference in the one our subscribers preferred. Even though the GameChanger is not a shopping cart abandonment email, we want to show you how simple and important subject line testing is when it comes to abandoned shopping cart emails.
Keep in mind, however, that one test simply isn’t enough to determine how you should plan your subject line strategy (or any strategy, for that matter). Not only do you need to send your test candidates to a statistically significant amount of your list before determining the winner, you also need to be testing for a long enough period of time to gather meaningful results. For example, if you only send a message every three weeks, one A / B test will not give you any sort of actionable data.
In addition, don’t forget the importance of testing what’s in your shopping cart abandonment emails, too. Perhaps your message is that you can offer the shopper a discount if he or she returns to his or her abandoned cart. It’s possible that your subscribers will respond to a percentage-off deal better than a dollar-off deal. In the Summit session slides about A/B testing, discover how one of our clients tested this idea and what the results were. In shopping cart abandonment emails, it’s always important to test whether images are effective. Depending on what products and services you sell, they may or may not be important to your customer.
The point of A/B testing is not to take for granted that what draws you in to a shopping cart abandonment email, but to make sure you know what will influence your customers the most.
Digital Marketing Coordinator, WhatCounts
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