How to Use Facebook Messenger Bots for Abandoned Cart Recovery

Woman at desk with laptop and cell phone to represent Facebook Messenger bots plus email

Editor’s Note: This article is a guest contribution from Benn Parr, co-founder and president of Octane AI.

When it comes to increasing their abandoned cart revenue, more and more top ecommerce merchants are combining Facebook Messenger with their email campaigns.

Messenger bots — and the Messenger checkbox — are the keys to increasing your abandoned cart revenue and the number of people who receive a message or email when they abandon a cart.

“Running campaigns on email and Messenger simultaneously has been a huge boon to the bottom line of our clients,” says Rachel Tyers, who leads strategic partnerships at digital marketing agency MuteSix.

I’m here to demystify Facebook Messenger bots. In this piece, I’m going to discuss how and why merchants use email + Messenger to recover abandoned carts, how to sync your email and Messenger campaigns, and share some eye-popping success stories.

It has always been best practice to send emails to customers who don’t complete their purchases. But the inbox is not the only place customers hang out online. More and more people use messaging apps, with over 1.3 billion people using Facebook Messenger each month alone.

Why use Facebook Messenger bots and email together

Add to cart button highlighted on website pointing at Messenger note on cell phone pointing to same on Messenger appThe numbers don’t lie: adding Facebook Messenger bots to your email campaigns results in more customers and more revenue.

In Klaviyo’s abandoned cart benchmark report, the average revenue per recipient of an abandoned cart email campaign is $5.81. And when you add Messenger, that number goes up. According to Octane AI’s data, customers who connect with a merchant on Facebook Message have a revenue per recipient of $7.97!  

The reason for this increase is simple: sending abandoned cart messages to prospective customers on multiple channels increases the chances of a conversion.  Sometimes an email gets lost; sometimes a message gets ignored. Stores increase their chances by doubling their communication channels.

Pairing Facebook Messenger with email also has another key benefit: it provides merchants an avenue for communicating with customers who haven’t yet given an email address. Facebook Messenger’s checkbox detects active Facebook sessions — no email required. So if someone abandons a cart, you can send them a Facebook message, even if you don’t have their email. This also gives you a chance to collect their email through Facebook Messenger and sync it automatically with your email platform.

In short, if you want your business to perform at its full potential, it’s clear that you can’t do just email or Facebook — you need to be recovering carts on both channels. There’s nothing to lose and everything to gain by adding Facebook Messenger as a marketing channel.

How to use email and Messenger to recover carts

Thanks to custom flows, you can sync your email and Messenger abandoned cart campaigns and customize them in infinite ways. Instead of sending duplicate emails and Facebook messages , you can trigger an email after a Facebook message has been sent or vice versa. You can set this to end when somebody has completed a purchase or opted out of marketing communications.

While there are many ways to set this up, two methods seem to be the most common and the most effective at increasing abandoned cart revenue and conversions.

two cell phones on left with Facebook messenger notification & ad with cell with matching email on right

Send abandoned cart messages via email and Messenger simultaneously

Double your chances of reaching a customer who has abandoned a cart by sending them both a friendly email and a simple Facebook message. Some customers simply don’t read their emails while others just don’t have or use Facebook. This way, you have the largest possible coverage with your abandoned cart campaigns

This has the benefit of increasing your conversion rate. According to stats we track from our clients, some merchants see up to 200% more abandoned cart revenue by implementing both. It makes sense – two channels equals double the conversion opportunities. However, this strategy has the potential downside of your customers feeling like they’re being inundated with the same message. You can avoid this by customizing each one to look and feel different. There are some unique ways to customize your abandoned cart emails and Facebook messages to make them differentiated, appealing, and informative to your customers.

Overall, we see most stores go with this strategy and activate both email and Messenger abandoned cart functionality.

Start with a Facebook message, then send an email as a follow-up

Using custom flows,  you can create a sequential abandoned cart campaign that begins with a Facebook message, then follows up with 1-2 emails if the customer has not completed his or her purchase. You can also use Messenger to ask for the customer’s email address, using Messenger’s email collection feature

This strategy has three key advantages: 1) it will connect you with customers who haven’t given you their email address; 2) it lets you collect an email address during the abandoned cart recovery process; and 3) it prevents your customers from getting hit with the same message twice.

Gif animation of abandoned cart flow that combines email and Facebook Messenger

Example abandoned cart flow that combines email and Messenger

You can set up these custom flows for more than abandoned cart campaigns — you could set up a custom email + Messenger flow for everything from holiday sales to targeting VIP customers. There’s a lot more to explore here, but I will save the deeper dive into integrating email and Messenger campaigns for a future article.

Wrapping up

It’s clear that Messenger marketing is here to stay. Running email and Messenger campaigns simultaneously results in a significant lift for merchants. Abandoned cart campaigns reach more people, conversion rates increase, and merchants collect more email addresses for future campaigns.

This just scratches the surface of what’s possible when you combine email and Messenger marketing. Companies like Summersalt, Loop Loft, and Bottlekeeper have all seen great success using both channels. 

Interested in learning more about creating and optimizing abandoned cart automations? Check out these shopping cart abandonment resources.

Ready to test out email and Messenger? Check out the set up documentation.

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  • Octane AI has only Shopify integration. For non Shopify stores how do we add “add to messenger” in item pages and send cart abandonment FB messages? Can it be done using Facebook developer codes or other methods?

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