How to Recover Abandoned Carts in WooCommerce (Ultimate guide + Email Templates)

In the world of e-commerce, one of the biggest challenges faced by businesses is the issue of abandoned carts. Did you know that 70 out of every 100 people who start shopping online don’t finish buying things? That’s a lot! But don’t worry. There are ways to help these people finish their shopping and help you drive more revenue.

We’ll talk about how to recover abandoned carts in WooCommerce using the Retainful plugin that can help remind people about their shopping carts and encourage them to finish buying things.

So if you’re looking for ways to recover abandoned carts in WooCommerce and increase your sales, this guide is for you.

Start recovering lost sales today with Retainful’s abandoned cart recovery plugin for WooCommerce.

What is shopping cart abandonment?

Shopping online is fun, but have you ever put something in your cart and then changed your mind before buying it? That’s called “shopping cart abandonment.” There are lots of reasons why this happens. People find the same product somewhere else for a better price or get distracted and forget to finish shopping.

Did you know that stores can use particular ways to remind you about abandoned cart? They might send you emails or offer a discount to encourage you to finish shopping. This is called “abandoned cart recovery.” Woocommerce stores can send you cart recovery emails to remind you about the things in your cart.

According to a study by Barilliance, abandoned cart recovery emails sent within 1 hour of cart abandonment have an average open rate of 46.2% and an average click-through rate of 13.3%.

How to see abandoned carts in WooCommerce?

Abandoned carts in WooCommerce are common. When you recover abandoned carts in WooCommerce, you recover lost sales, understand customer behavior and improve customer behavior by personalizing their experience.

To view abandoned carts in WooCommerce, follow the following steps.

  1. Log in to your WooCommerce admin dashboard.
  2. From the left-hand menu, click on “WooCommerce” and select “Reports.”
  3. Click on the “Abandoned Carts” tab.
  4. Here, you’ll see a list of all the abandoned carts in your store, including the customer’s name, the items in their cart, and the date of abandonment.
  5. To view more details about a specific abandoned cart, click on the customer’s name or email address.

What are the reasons for cart abandonment in Woocommerce?

Cart abandonment in WooCommerce is a serious issue that needs immediate attention as it negatively impacts revenue. One of the main reasons for cart abandonment in WooCommerce is the customer may be shopping without any immediate need or simply browsing. However, there are many other reasons why shoppers abandon their carts, and these reasons can vary over time.

By understanding the reasons behind cart abandonment in WooCommerce and taking steps to address these issues, businesses can increase their chances of recovering lost sales and improving customer satisfaction.

Reasons for cart abandonment during checkout

How do you improve abandoned carts checkout?

Customers abandoning their carts can negatively impact the store’s revenue. Luckily there are ways to recover abandoned carts in WooCommerce. This includes offering different payment options, reminding the customer to finish the purchase and simplifying the checkout process. When these strategies are implemented, the stores will steadily grow in WooCommerce abandoned cart recovery.

Some of the best WooCommerce abandoned cart checkout include

  • Exit intent popups
  • Abandoned cart push notifications
  • Guest checkout
  • Remarketing ads
  • WooCommerce abandoned cart recovery emails
  • Add to cart popup

Exit Intent Popups

How often have you seen a message popup offering a discount just when you were about to leave the website? That’s called an exit intent popup. It’s a clever trick to keep customers engaged and hopefully persuade them to complete their purchase. With WooCommerce, you can customize these popups to say different things, like offering free shipping or giving a coupon code. It’s a win-win situation for both the store owner and the customer because the store owner gets a sale and the customer gets a good deal.

Abandoned cart Push Notifications

When customers abandon their carts in WooCommerce, the store will send them a message reminding them about the things they left behind and asking if they want to come back and finish their purchase. This is called a “WooCommerce abandoned cart push notification.”

It’s like the store is saying, “Hey, you forgot something! Come back and get it!” This kind of message can be really helpful because it reminds people about the things they want to buy and encourages them to finish the purchase. But if the store sends too many of these messages, it can start to annoy people and make them not want to shop there anymore. So, it’s important for stores to be careful about how many messages they send and when they send them.

Guest checkout

Some e-commerce users can find it a little annoying to create an account on your WooCommerce site just to buy one product. That’s why your store must have a “guest checkout” option that lets your customers buy something without making an account first. Later, if they like the store and want to buy more things, you might ask your customer to create an account.

If you have a WooCommerce store, you can turn on the guest checkout option so that your customers can buy things without making an account. To do this, go to your store settings and click on the “Accounts & Privacy” tab. Then, check the box that says “Guest checkout.” This way, your customers can buy things easily without having to create an account, but you’ll still have all the information you need to process their order.

Remarketing ads

Remarketing is another powerful technique used in WooCommerce to recover abandoned carts. The store can show your customers ads for the item they looked at to remind them to come back and finish buying it. Remarketing works by tracking what your customers looked at on the store’s website and showing you ads for those things later on. Studies show that people are 76% more likely to click on these ads than on other ads!

WooCommerce abandoned cart recovery emails

WooCommerce abandoned cart emails are sent to your customers to remind them about the items they left in their cart and encourage them to come back and buy them. In WooCommerce, you can automatically send these emails to your customers. Did you know that sending just one cart abandonment email can recover 10-30% of lost sales? And if you send a series of three emails, you can recover up to 69% of lost sales! That’s because these emails remind people about the things they wanted to buy, making it easy for them to come back and finish their purchase.

Add to cart Popup

The “Add-to-cart” popup is a quick way to add something to your shopping cart without having to go to a new page. You can set up these popups as a part of your WooCommerce abandoned cart recovery measures. It makes it easy for customers to add things to their cart. They don’t have to wait for a new page to load every time you want to add something to your cart. Plus, they can help your customers discover other things they might want to buy.

How to recover WooCommerce abandoned cart with Retainful?

Recover abandoned cart WooCommerce plugin, Retainful, can be downloaded for FREE from here.

Follow the steps given below to get started with WooCommerce abandoned cart templates.

Installing Retainful Plugin & activating it

Download the recover abandoned cart WooCommerce plugin, Retainful, for FREE.

  1. Go to your WordPress dashboard → Plugins → Add new
  2. Search for the ‘Retainful’ plugin.
  3. Click “Install Now” to install the plugin
  4. Activate the plugin
Installing Retainful plugin

That’s it!

Let’s now Connect your WooCommerce store with Retainful Dashboard using the API Keys.

Connecting your store with Retainful API

After installation, you should connect your WooCommerce store with Retainful to start tracking and recovering carts.

Step 1: Get the API Keys

Copy your App ID and Secret Key

Step 2: Connect your store

  • Go to WordPress Dashboard → Retainful
  • Under the Connection tab, enter the keys in the respective field.
  • Click “Connect”
  • You’ll see a successful message once the connection is established.
Connect to Retainful

You can now track and recover abandoned carts from your store.

The default settings in the Retainful plugin are sufficient for 99% of the stores. No adjustments will be required. You can use them as is.

Updating the plugin

Updating the Retainful plugin for WooCommerce is easy as well.

  • Please go to your WordPress dashboard -> Plugins
  • Find the Retainful Plugin and click on the “Update Now” link

Here is a screenshot:

Updating Retainful plugin WooCommerce

NOTE: If you don’t see the “update now” link, please visit your WordPress dashboard and click Updates section. Then go to the Plugins section. You should see the “Update now” link.

Next Steps

Create an Abandoned Cart Recovery email campaign for your store.

Checking for WooCommerce abandoned carts

An overview of the WooCommerce abandoned cart details can be seen on the dashboard of Retainful.

You can find the following details.

The total (number of)

  • Abandoned Carts
  • Abandoned Amount
  • Recovered Carts
  • Recovered Revenue
  • Recoverable Carts
  • Recoverable Amount
Retainful dashboard

Some data that are specific to carts are displayed too. They include

  • Status
  • Date
  • Cart ID
  • Customer
  • Total

Retainful also allows to view and segment carts into three categories – abandoned, recovered, and, live carts. The plugin also allows you to view each cart separately and delete it if unnecessary.

This ‘Metrics & Cart Activity’ page of Retainful will tell you what the current situation is and will give you an idea of how to take things forward.

Retainful cart activity page

Main Settings

consider cart as abandoned

The following details must be given importance.

Time after which the cart is considered abandoned. This is of most importance to consider a cart as abandoned. The cart will be considered abandoned if it is inactive after the time mentioned in this field. Here the example is given as 15 minutes.

Notification for WooCommerce abandoned cart recovery

It is obvious that you might want to know when a cart is recovered. This feature does this work. When enabled ‘yes’, you will get notified of a recovered cart.

Point out duplicate carts

This helps to identify users who have shopped online from two or more devices during a period of time.

WooCommerce customer retention emails workflow

Retainful offers a variety of features to help businesses increase customer retention and boost sales. One such feature is the ability to recover abandoned carts through automated email workflows. With the use of WooCommerce abandoned cart recovery emails, businesses can send targeted messages to customers who have left items in their shopping cart without completing their purchase.

This can be an effective strategy for enticing customers to return to their cart and complete the transaction, ultimately increasing sales and customer loyalty.
The pre-built workflow template consists of three emails scheduled to send in good time intervals.

Follow the below steps to configure the Abandoned Cart Recovery workflow:

  1. Login to your Retainful dashboard
  2. Go to ‘Automation’ -> Create Workflow -> Choose ‘Abandoned Cart Recovery with dynamic coupon.’
create workflow automation

3. Give a ‘Name’ to your abandoned cart recovery workflow and click ‘Continue.’

give a name to your workflow

Trigger – You can find the ‘Trigger’ at the top of the workflow template. The trigger lets you determine when a customer can enter the workflow. By default, the trigger is set to allow anyone who starts checkout at your store to enter into the workflow.
If you would like to set up any custom trigger rule for the workflow, you can set it up on the right side. You learn how to configure the trigger here.

Entry Rule – The Entry Rule lets you restrict customers from entering the automation workflows if they have entered into the workflow previously.

This will help you to prevent customers from entering the same workflow simultaneously within a short span of time.

Set up process

1. Click on ‘Trigger’ to find the trigger settings on the right side.

trigger settings

2. Click on Entry Rule -> Add Rules

3. Select ‘Skip if the customer entered the workflow’ -> In the last

4. Enter the days and click on ‘Add’

entry rule

For example, if you would like to prevent a customer from entering the workflow if he had already entered the workflow in the last 3 days, you can set up the Entry Rule like, Skip if the customer entered the workflow -> In the last -> 3 (Days)

5. After adding the Entry Rule, click on the ‘Save Rule’ button to add the Entry Rule to the workflow.

That’s all required.

If you would like to learn more about the Entry Rule, please check the Entry Rule guide here.

Wait – Since the trigger will allow customers to enter into the workflow as soon as they start checkout (entered email address on the checkout page), it’s necessary to have a ‘Wait’ block before the first email block. So, the first email will not be sent to the customers as soon as they started the checkout.

For example, if a customer comes to your store, adds an item to the cart, and submits his email address on the checkout page at 10:00 AM. He/She will immediately enter into the workflow and wait for 1 hour.

  • If he completes the purchase within that 1 hour, he will exit from the workflow right away.
  • If he fails to complete the purchase within that 1 hour, the cart will be considered as abandoned and the first abandoned cart recovery will go out to the customer at 11:00 AM.

Email Settings

Now, we are at the 1st ‘Email’ block of the workflow. You can click on the ‘Email’ block to customize the email subject line, preview text, and email content.

Email settings

Subject line: Change the subject line if you like (Here is an extensive list of subject lines you can use)

Preview text: You can set up a captivating preview text to motivate the customers to open the email.

Edit Email Content

Click on the “Edit Email Contents” button to edit the contents of the email. This will bring up the visual drag-and-drop email editor.

visual drag and drop email editor

If you would like to change the email template, you can click on the ‘Change template’ button on the left top and select a template of your choice.

Change the Logo: Click on the placeholder logo. On the right side of the panel, you will see the option to change the logo.

Replace the Placeholder Image

Editing the email content: Just “double-click” on any content section to edit the default text on the email. You can use the following shortcodes to personalize the email,

{{billing_address.first_name}} – The First name of the customer.

{billing_address.last_name}} – The last name of the customer.

{{customer_name}} – The full name of the customer (the first and the last name)

{{abandoned_checkout_url}} – The unique recovery URL for the cart abandoned by the customer. You can use this in any links or buttons in your email copy.

Click the “Save” button once you have added the desired content and changed the logo in the email template.

Email Components in Editor

Retainful provides a few special components/blocks in the Email Editor for your cart abandonment emails. Here is the list of components.

Cart Summary Blocks

This block helps you insert the customer’s cart contents when sending the email. When this block is present, it will display the products in the customer’s cart along with the product’s title, image, and cost.

There are two styles in the Cart Summary block and you can use any one of them in your email to include the customer’s cart.

The horizontal Block will have the cart contents displayed as a table:

Horizontal Cart Summary Block

Cart Summary Block – Vertical will highlight the product image prominently:

Vertical Cart Summary Block

Cart recovery URL

Retainful generates a unique cart recovery URL for each abandoned cart. When the email is sent, customers can click on the “Finish checking out” button to recover their cart and complete the purchase.

The Call-to-Action (CTA) button in the default templates are already linked to the cart recovery URL using the shortcode: {{abandoned_checkout_url}}

Abandoned Cart Recovery URL

However, if you want to use this in a custom button or a link, you can use this shortcode (a.k.a merge tag) as well.

Testing Email

Once you have completed editing the email template, you can test the email.

Click the “Save” button once you have added the desired content and changed the logo in the email template.

After the first email block, we have a wait block for ‘1’ day. It’s ideal to send the second email 1 day after sending the first email.

Don’t miss out on potential revenue – improve your checkout process with Retainful’s proven strategies for abandoned cart recovery.

Coupon Settings

We have a coupon block in the workflow, the coupon block will generate a dynamic coupon, you can send this dynamic coupon in the following abandoned cart recovery emails in the workflow.

Offering coupons in abandoned cart recovery emails motivates customers to recover their abandoned carts.

It’s ideal to send the coupon in the second abandoned cart recovery email.

Here is how you can configure the coupon block in the workflow,

Workflow Coupon Settings
  1. Click on the ‘Coupon’ block
  2. Select the Coupon type
  3. Enter the coupon value and set up expiry (Optional: You can enter a minimum order value if you would like to set up a minimum order value required for using the coupon)
  4. Save

Now, you have successfully configured the coupon block.

Creating a series of emails in the workflow

Followed by the coupon block, we have the 2nd email block in place.

The 2nd email can go with a dynamic coupon to motivate the customers.

Adding dynamic coupon in the 2nd email

In the email template, click on the coupon block {{retainful_dynamic_coupon}}, then you will find the coupon settings on the right side. In the coupon settings just click on the 1st option that says ‘Use the coupon code generated by the coupon step’

configuring coupon block

By doing this, you are ensuring that the coupon code generated at the coupon block will be sent to the customers through the 2nd abandoned cart recovery email.

Also, you need to change the logo, edit the email content as per your preference, and ‘Save’ it.

And, before moving forward to the 3rd email block, we have the ‘Wait’ block set for 2 days.

Make sure to configure the coupon block, change the logo, and edit the email content in the 3rd email template. Then, Save it.

Dynamic coupon workflow

Going Live

When you’re done with configuring the Abandoned Cart Recovery workflow, you can click on the ‘Start Workflow’ on the right top to ‘Set Live’ the workflow.

Setting Live

That’s it. You’ve successfully configured your Abandoned Cart Recovery workflow and set it live.

Testing Your Abandoned Cart Recovery Campaign

You can follow the below steps to test your abandoned cart recovery workflow.


Make sure you have set live the abandoned cart recovery workflow at your Retainful dashboard -> Automation (The status of the workflow should be ‘Live’)

WooCommerce Merchants: Please go to your WordPress dashboard and LOG OUT before testing the abandoned cart recovery process. Also, make sure to use an email address that is NOT an admin user in your WordPress.

WooCommerce Stores: Watch a video walk through for testing your abandoned cart recovery, Click here.

Testing steps

  1. Open your storefront in a private / incognito window (so that you can browse like a customer)
  2. Add an item to the cart, go to checkout. Fill-in a valid email address and a first name. (TIP: Use an alternative email of yours instead of the store admin email)
  3. Then close the browser window

You should receive the first cart recovery email based on the interval you’ve set.


By default, a customer will enter into an abandoned cart recovery email workflow as soon as the checkout process is initiated (Submitted email address on the checkout page)

How to write WooCommerce abandoned cart emails?

Writing WooCommerce abandoned cart emails is an essential part of recovering lost sales and improving customer experience. It involves crafting personalized and persuasive messages that incentivize customers to complete their purchases.

With the right strategy and tools, writing effective abandoned cart emails can help businesses recover up to 20% of their abandoned carts.

The following section has the prime elements for a winning WooCommerce abandoned cart emails.

Subject line

A study says 35% of people open emails based on the subject line. There are different types of subject lines like FOMO, scarcity, emoji, and many others. This has to interest the email recipient in taking things forward from thereon.

Eg: Did you leave something behind?

Your bottle of wine is waiting in the cart!

Product image

It is always a wise decision to include the image of the product in the cart details. This is to remind the potential buyer about the abandoned product. Pictures stay in memory than names.

A clear CTA

The CTA button must be highlighted in the cart abandonment email because ultimately, you want the reader to proceed to checkout. It should also be linked directly to the cart. If the CTA is not visible and hard to spot, the very purpose it is lost.

Pleasing design

The aesthetic aspect of an email is also a very important factor. You will never feel like going through an email that is crammed in. There must be enough white space in the background. When there are splendid colors in there, they must blend in very well and make it visually pleasing.

Enticing copy

The writing in the email is sometimes overlooked. Sometimes, writing alone has the power to recover a cart when done the right way. Use a language style that your customer base connects with very easily. You can also project the characteristics of your brand through writing.

Contact details

You must be around within the customer’s reach. The details of your contact must be mentioned so that the customer can get in touch in case of any issues or queries. Give a live chat option if available or display a toll-free number.
Secondary elements that make the WooCommerce abandoned cart email strategy worthy of conversion are:

A discount

This is what people want to be exact. This does not mean that you need to include the offer in all your WooCommerce abandoned cart emails. Adding the offer to the second email in the sequence is the best idea ever. This is a surefire method to get back to the customer.

Product recommendations

You have the liberty to recommend other products in the email. They can be either complementary or products of the same category. This will ensure that the potential customer will resume shopping if he is uninterested in the abandoned product.

Social proof

People are always interested to know about product reviews and testimonials. Cart abandonment emails can be used as a platform to showcase them to build confidence to make a purchase.


BOKA Example

Check out this email from Boka, a company that sells oral care products. They put a review from a real customer in an abandoned cart email. This makes the customer think more about how good the product is and might make them want to buy it more.

This example from Boka shows how Boka emphasizes the advantages of its products (“heal the mouth and reduce disease and inflammation in the body”) in the email rather than providing product specifics. The email then directs the customer to their shopping cart.

BONOBOS example

The email has a catchy subject line that mentions the offer of free shipping and a 15% discount on your next purchase. It’s important to note that the discount is only for the next purchase, not the items already in your cart. The email also has a fun checklist that encourages you to click the button to get the discount once you’ve completed all the tasks.

BONOBOS example final

When you make customers feel more comfortable, they are more likely to finish buying things they left in their cart; it’s a good idea to emphasize your satisfaction guarantee and return policy.

Harry’s does this by mentioning their 30-day quality guarantee and full refund right before the button that says “Finish shopping.” Even though this email is pretty simple, it’s still fun because of the bright button and the cute elephant at the top.

Best Practices for WooCommerce Abandoned Cart Email

There are several best practices to follow when it comes to abandoned cart emails in WooCommerce. These include enabling abandoned cart emails in WooCommerce, sending emails at the right time, personalizing them to make them more relevant to the recipient, and using effective design and content.

These best practices can increase your chances of recovering abandoned carts and improve your sales and revenue.

  1. Enabling Abandoned Cart Emails in WooCommerce
  2. Timing: When to Send Abandoned Cart Emails in WooCommerce
  3. Personalization: How to Make Abandoned Cart Emails More Relevant in WooCommerce
  4. Design and Content: Best Practices for Creating Effective Abandoned Cart Emails in WooCommerce.

Enabling Abandoned Cart Emails in WooCommerce

To enable abandoned cart emails in WooCommerce, follow these steps:

  • Install and activate a WooCommerce email plugin, such as Retainful
  • In the Retainful dashboard, configure the email template, subject line, and sender information.
  • Choose when to send the abandoned cart email (e.g., after one hour, one day, etc.).
  • Customize the email content to encourage customers to complete their purchases.
  • Save the settings and test the email to ensure it’s working properly.

Timing: When to Send Abandoned Cart Emails in WooCommerce

The timing of abandoned cart emails in WooCommerce can significantly impact their effectiveness. Some best practices include:

  • Sending the first email within 1-2 hours of the abandoned cart.
  • Follow up with a second email 24-48 hours later if the customer hasn’t returned to complete their purchase.
  • Avoiding sending too many emails to avoid overwhelming customers.
  • Experiment with different timing strategies to see what works best for your audience.

Personalization: How to Make Abandoned Cart Emails More Relevant in WooCommerce

Personalizing abandoned cart emails can help make them more relevant and effective. Some tips include:

  • Using the customer’s name in the email subject and greeting.
  • Include product recommendations based on the customer’s browsing and purchase history.
  • Offering a discount or promotion tailored to the customer’s interests.
  • Using language and imagery that aligns with the customer’s demographic and psychographic profile.
  • A/B testing different personalization strategies to see what works best for your audience.

Design and Content: Best Practices for Creating Effective Abandoned Cart Emails in WooCommerce

Design and content are crucial components of creating effective abandoned cart emails in WooCommerce. Some best practices include:

  • Using a clear and attention-grabbing subject line.
  • Including high-quality product images and descriptions.
  • Providing a prominent call-to-action button to complete the purchase.
  • Using persuasive language to encourage the customer to take action.
  • Avoiding a cluttered or confusing design that may deter the customer from taking action.

Ready to increase your sales and customer satisfaction? Sign up for Retainful today and start recovering your abandoned carts in minutes.


In conclusion, shopping cart abandonment is a common problem for online businesses. However, there are ways to improve the checkout process and increase sales. By using plugins such as Retainful, businesses can recover lost sales and improve customer satisfaction. It’s also important to understand the reasons for cart abandonment.

By doing so, businesses can recover lost sales and improve customer retention. In fact, studies have shown that using abandoned cart recovery emails can increase conversion rates by up to 40%. So, what are you waiting for? Start implementing these strategies and recover those lost sales today!

Why Should We Recover WooCommerce Cart Abandonment?

It helps to recover lost sales, as customers who abandoned their carts can be reminded to come back and complete their purchase. This can significantly increase revenue for businesses. It also helps to understand customer behavior and preferences, as businesses can analyze why customers abandon their carts and take steps to address any issues.

How can I improve my checkout abandonment?

To improve checkout abandonment, you can implement strategies such as exit-intent popups, abandoned cart push notifications, guest checkout, remarketing ads, and WooCommerce abandoned cart recovery emails.

How does WooCommerce’s abandoned cart work?

WooCommerce Abandoned Cart works by tracking the behavior of customers who add items to their carts but do not complete the checkout process. The plugin saves the items in the abandoned cart and sends out reminder emails or notifications to the customer, encouraging them to return and complete the purchase. By recovering abandoned carts, businesses can increase their sales and improve customer satisfaction.

How do I create an abandoned cart in WooCommerce?

Abandoned carts happen when customers add items to their cart but do not complete the purchase. You can use WooCommerce plugins like Retainful to recover abandoned carts and boost your sales.

How do you recover abandoned carts?

To recover abandoned carts, you can use tools such as Retainful, which sends cart recovery emails to customers who left their carts without completing the purchase. Other strategies include exit-intent popups, push notifications, guest checkout, and remarketing ads.

retainful demo

Schedule an online demo

Our experts will walk you through Retainful and
answers your questions.