The Abandoned / Live Carts page is a powerful tool for getting to know your customers. Not only does it let you view the items in a shopper's cart before they check out, but you can also learn why some shoppers abandon their carts.

Getting Started

To enable Abandoned / Live Carts:

  1. Go to Orders > Abandoned / Live Carts.

  2. Click the three-dot actions menu icon and select Abandoned / Live Carts Settings.

  3. Make sure Collect Abandoned Cart Info is enabled, and click Save.

The Abandoned / Live Carts Table

Whenever a shopper on your store adds an item to their cart, the software assigns that cart a random ID. The table on the Abandoned / Live Carts page lists information for every cart that is abandoned or currently open on your storefront, along with customer info for users that were logged in when they filled their cart.

Using the Quick Edit Window

To view details for a cart, click the three-dot actions menu and select Enable Quick Edit. This will open the Quick Edit Window. Here, the information displayed in the main Abandoned / Live Carts table will appear, along with a list of every product in that cart.

Retention Email

If an abandoned cart is associated with an existing customer's email address, you can also send them a helpful reminder email with the Retention Email button. This email asks the shopper if they have any questions or need help completing the order.

By default, a cart must be abandoned for 12 hours before the Send Retention Email link will appear. If you want the option to send retention emails sooner, just go to Settings > Config Variables and perform a search with the term "retention" in the Name field. Modify the numerical value in the field next to Retention Email Waiting Period in Hours and save.

You can also reword the email customers receive by editing the Retention Email. This can be edited via the FTP. Directions are included in THIS article.

Tips + Tricks for the Abandoned / Live Carts Page

Checking Abandoned Carts for Quality Control

You can determine how many abandoned carts are being generated, as well as how frequently, by examining the Last Modified field for each cart. You can take this a step further by examining the contents of recently abandoned carts.

Upon examining recently abandoned carts, you might find a common thread among the products that were abandoned by different customers, such as the same one or two products being abandoned by multiple customers. You can use this information to further investigate these products: perhaps one of the products is out of stock, or some other factor is causing people to jump ship.

Investigating Abandoned Cart IP Addresses

It is a little known (but important) fact that when search engine robots crawl and index ecommerce sites, many of them add random products to the shopping cart. Using the information provided in an Abandoned Cart can help show if it was a web crawler, but do note that not all IP addresses will state if the host is a web crawler.

For example, say you had several abandoned carts from the following IP:

If we use a free tool such as whois.domaintools or we will be able to see where the IP is coming from. In this case, it states in the Hostname that it is a WebCrawler.

Now What?

You could just ignore it — it's good to know search engines are putting you in their databases and bringing you to the attention of potential customers. But if these abandoned carts are bothersome to your report, there are a couple of options:

  • You can log in to your web analytics tool or SmarterStats through and find the option that reduces the number of times your site is indexed.

  • You can add some special code to your robots.txt file if you want to prevent crawlers from adding products to the cart. See SEO Features for information on using the robots exclusion protocol..

If you don’t know how to find these options, ask your website developer to help you out.

Preemptive Marketing

One of the benefits of the Abandoned / Live Carts page is that it lists the contact information for customers who are logged in to their accounts. You can use this information to contact customers regarding possible orders.

For example, you may notice that a regular customer in good standing with the store has created several abandoned carts. Using the customer's information listed in the abandoned carts, you can contact the customer to see what's up. This can help you gather valuable as a merchant: perhaps the customer has found the same or a similar product online elsewhere at a better price, or maybe the customer is having trouble deciding on a purchase.

Armed with this kind of information, you may be able to turn these situations around to convert a missed sale into a closed sale, or even address issues with your products that you were unaware of (like a new competitor's pricing).

Clearing Abandoned Cart Data

As more abandoned cart records accumulate, the oldest ones will eventually be deleted to make room for new ones. However, if your store gets a lot of traffic, it can be difficult to sift through several days' worth of abandoned carts for valuable retention opportunities. 

To remove data for abandoned carts that are more than two days old, you can use the following Bulk Update script:

delete from cartidlog where lastmodified < DATEADD(day,DATEDIFF(day,0,GETDATE())-2,0)

To remove data for ALL abandoned carts, you can use the following Bulk Update script:

DELETE FROM CartIdLog WHERE LastModified < DATEADD(day,DATEDIFF(day,0,GETDATE())-0,0)

Note: We only recommend this method for advanced users who are knowledgeable about the Bulk Update tool.

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