Abandoned cart emails produce a significantly higher revenue per message than promotional mailings, according to the latest email remarketing best practices analysis from consumer insight firm Experian Marketing Services. This article is copyright 2014 The Best Customer Guide.

The 'Q1 2014 Email Benchmark Report' found that personalised abandoned cart emails that show the actual customer cart had 25% higher transaction rates than abandoned cart emails that just linked back to the brand's Website. Furthermore, personalised subject lines had 12% higher unique open rates than mailings without personalisation.

"Email remarketing through a series of personalised content can have a real and direct impact on a brand's bottom line," explained Peter DeNunzio, general manager of cross-channel marketing for Experian Marketing Services. "Brands that are able to 'test and learn' their way to personalisation are particularly successful as they embrace cross-channel programmes."

Among other significant findings from the study:

  • Abandoned cart emails should be delivered in a three-part series. Brands that send second abandoned cart reminders had a 50% increase in abandoned cart revenue compared to just their first abandoned cart mailing. Those sending three mailings saw a 56% increase in revenue compared to just sending the initial abandoned cart email.
  • Test including an offer. Including an offer in the first abandoned cart mailing boosted transaction rates by 54%. The highest transaction rates for offers were for dollar-off offers (2.05%), followed by free shipping (1.87%) and percent off (1.15%) offers.
  • Half of all email opens are now occurring on mobile devices, on average, although this does vary by vertical market. While 63% of emails from multichannel retailers are opened on a mobile device, mobile opens account for only 22% of email opens for business products and services.
  • Total email volume increased by 15.6% in Q1 2014 compared to Q1 2013 but that volume had declined in Q1 compared to Q4 2013 (attributable to increased activity during the holiday period).

According to another recent Experian Data Quality study, 66% of companies had experienced email deliverability issues in the previous 12 months, while the Q1 2014 Email Benchmark Report highlighted a 14.3% year-over-year increase in email bounce rates, with even larger percentage increases been reported in several of the industries studies.

This dramatic increase in email bounce rates may be largely due to the increasing practice of Internet Service Providers (ISPs) of shutting down inactive accounts more frequently and aggressively to aid their systems' performance.

"It is vital that companies adopt more effective targeting, list cleaning and data quality practices to improve the deliverability of their emails and the health of their cross-channel marketing programmes," concluded DeNunzio.