Recovering abandoned carts: create the email (step 2)

E-commerce businesses can recover lost sales with an effective abandoned cart strategy. SendinBlue makes this easy by giving you all the necessary tools to: 

  1. Track shoppers' behavior on your website (learn how)
  2. Create emails personalized with each shopper's abandoned products  
  3. Send abandoned cart emails at the perfect moment (learn how

In this guide, we'll review step 2: Creating an email that automatically features the products from your shopper's abandoned cart: 


Before getting started

1. Confirm how your website tracks abandoned carts

Below are instructions for marketers whose websites use a plugin to share abandoned cart data with SendinBlue as well as instructions for those who created their own "track events".

Unsure about your setup? Check out this guide or talk to your website developer. 

2. Confirm your template language

In order to use the abandoned cart emails, you must be using the most current template language version. If your account was created after October 1, 2018, your account is automatically using our most current functionality. 

 If your account was created before October 1, 2018, please confirm the template language here:

  • Navigate to the Campaigns section
  • Click on Settings in the left menu & select Default Settings
  • Confirm that your Template Language Version is set to New


Creating your abandoned cart email

We recommend using the drag and drop email editor to quickly create the perfect email: 

  • Navigate to the Automation platform
  • Click on Email Templates in the left menu & click to create a New Template
  • In the Design step, choose the Drag & Drop Editor

Customizing your template

New templates start with a basic layout. You can easily add new sections, show/hide elements within a section, and customize their layout and design. We recommend: 

  • including the shopper's name (if you know it) 
  • reminding the shopper that they haven't completed their purchase yet
  • including details about the product(s) in their cart  


Check our Drag & Drop section or Drag & Drop 2020 to learn more about designing your template with the Drag & Drop Editor.

Inserting abandoned cart details

Next, we will enable our template to recognize and display personalized data about each shopper's cart.

1. Inserting placeholders for abandoned cart data 

You will insert placeholders in your email template for abandoned cart and product details, such as the product's name, price, size, etc.


SendinBlue email templates use a common format for these placeholders. The placeholders are pre-determined based on the method you use for sharing abandoned cart data with SendinBlue (via plugin vs. creating your own "track events"). 

Using SendinBlue e-commerce plugins

The abandoned cart data placeholders are standardized if you use one of these SendinBlue website plugins

The plugins automatically share "events" containing data about your abandoned carts and these placeholders will be replaced with personalized data: 

Items data  Insert this placeholder in your template
Item name {{ }}
Item SKU  {{ item.sku }}
Item category {{ item.category }}
Item ID {{ }}
Item variant ID {{ item.variant_id }}
Item variant name {{ item.variant_name }}
Item price {{ item.price }}
Item quantity  {{ item.quantity }} 
Item URL  {{ item.url }}
Item image {{ item.image }}
Cart data  Insert this placeholder in your template 
Affiliation {{ params.affiliation }}
Date {{ }} 
Subtotal {{ params.subtotal }} 
Discount {{ }} 
Shipping {{ params.shipping }} 
Total before tax {{ params.total_before_tax }} 
Tax {{ }} 
Total  {{ }}
Currency  {{ params.currency }} 
URL to view cart {{ params.url }} 


Using your own abandoned cart events  

If you (or your developer) manually updated your website to send abandoned cart "track events" to SendinBlue, the placeholders will be based on your setup (as described in this guide).  

Good to know: If a developer set up the abandoned cart events for you, please request a list of available placeholders for use in your template. 

2. Recognizing abandoned cart data 

Enable the Dynamic List option in the settings of each section that contain placeholders for abandoned cart data. This ensures the template can display multiple products and interpret data sent by your website to SendinBlue.


As shown, input the following in the open fields for "parameter" and "variable":

  • variable = the first word in your placeholder, e.g. for the section containing {{ item.image }} the variable is "item" (shown below in red) 
  • parameter = is typically the plural version of your variable, e.g. for the section containing the placeholder {{ item.image }} the parameter is "items".

If a colleague set up abandoned cart events for you, you may also ask them to confirm the parameter name. 

You may set a limit for the number of items displayed in your email (optional). 

View this guide to learn more about using the dynamic lists feature. 

Inserting product images & links

Product images

To insert an image: 

  1. Drag & drop a design block into your template that contains space for an image 
  2. Click on the image space to open the image settings
  3. Under Image source, select From URL. Insert the appropriate abandoned cart placeholder for the product image. 


Product links

You may insert the abandoned cart placeholder for the product URL as you would any other URL in your email template.


For example, you may insert the placeholder in the image settings Link field to make the image clickable. Or, you may highlight any text and apply a new link containing the product URL placeholder. 

Adding more personalization

You may personalize a template with any existing contact attributes that you store in SendinBlue, such as the shopper's first name. 

Click on the desired text block, then click the Personalize dropdown menu, and select the contact attribute to insert the correct placeholder. 


View this guide to learn more about personalizing emails with your contacts' attributes. 

What's next