Next up is the latest installment of our cart abandonment analysis series. This week we’re going to take a look at Crutchfield, #120 on the Internet Retailer 500 list.

Crutchfield is one of the most recognizable electronics retailers out there and specializes in car stereos. Last year, Crutchfield had $149 Million in revenue.

For this particular case of abandonment, I added a new Denon receiver to my cart at a $199.99 price point. Abandonment is a huge issue for a company like Crutchfield. Because their site contains so much great content, many shoppers will simply consume the content & reviews and then abandon to purchase from another site at a lower price. In this case, I completed every step of checkout and abandoned half way through the checkout page.

After 23.5 hours, I received this email:

What I liked:

Personalization: The email does an awesome job of catching me in context. Though it’s not personally addressed to me, the email does contain a large, high quality photograph of the item I had abandoned in my cart previously. This is an incredibly powerful tactic as my memories of adding that item are immediately triggered. If I had been a real customer, this email could have been just the thing I needed to make the purchase.
Design: The email is clear and well designed. I felt a sense of security from the photograph of their customer service folks. Including photographs of real people is a very effective way to build trust with potential customers.
Offer: The email contained a $50.00 price break that was very enticing on a $200 item. I do think they could have done a better job highlighting the offer. It could have easily gotten lost if I was not reading the email closely.
Social Proof: They do a nice job in the email footer of highlighting the most recent industry awards that they’ve won. Another interesting test might be including customer reviews or ratings.
Copy: Crutchfield does a great job connecting the subject line to the primary headline in the email: “We think you may have left something behind” The rest of the copy in the email focuses on reassuring potential customers that customer service is available in many different forms: forums, email, and toll free numbers.  Adding a toll free number to your site is a very powerful conversion tool and it applies to email too.

What I would test:

Design: The extra navigation was distracting. I would test the email without it.
Timing: The first email arrived 23.5 hours after I abandoned my cart. I would test sending this email 30 minutes to 1 hour after abandon to see how conversion is effected.
Call to Action: Despite the great imagery and personalization, I wasn’t sure what to do next. Should I call? Should I click the image? How do I redeem the discount? It wasn’t clear where I should go after engaging with the email.

This campaign was a great example of a company putting in the extra effort to send in context emails to their potential customers. “Right time, right context” is a very powerful idea in email marketing and Crutchfield gets it right. All in all, I was very impressed with the campaign and I’m sure it drives a significant percentage of their email marketing revenue.

Mike Arsenault
Mike Arsenault is the Founder & CEO of Rejoiner. He works with 350+ online retail & eCommerce companies like Hydroflask, Footjoy, GUESS, and Big Chill to help them grow faster using lifecycle email. He also once lived aboard a 36' sailboat in Boston.