Programmatic Mail and Christmas

Christmas is fast approaching, and we are all starting to ramp up our marketing strategies. Christmas this year is probably more important than any other year due to the loss of revenue during the lockdown. Many businesses are looking to recoup these lost earnings. One of the ways to increase your income this Christmas will be to reactivate abandoned baskets. 


Abandoned baskets cost online retailers billions of pounds every year in lost potential revenue. IMRG have question 200 of the UK’s largest online retailers and found that 31% of all baskets are abandoned . That’s why basket abandonment is one of the critical challenges facing eCommerce businesses today. 

Before we start, let’s look at why customers abandon their baskets. People leave baskets for all kind of reasons; some people are just window shopping others are comparing prices, and so on. An amount of baskets that are cast off to the side is to be expected, but here are the top reasons why people abandon shopping carts:

  • 44% the shipping cost is too high
  • 41% are not ready to purchase yet
  • 25% price too high
  • 22% shipping costs not clearly marked
  • 14% no guest checkout option
  • 12% checkout needed too much information
  • 11% complex checkout process
  • 11% website too slow

These facts tell us a great deal, and like we said Christmas is fast approaching so now would be a great time to ensure your website is in tip-top shape. Make sure your website is optimised, has guest checkouts, and your site speed can handle the influx of visitors during busy times. 

Programmatic Mail is good, but, unfortunately, it can’t ensure your site is optimised. It can, however, help with the other significant reasons on that list. 

What is programmatic Mail

Programmatic Mail is a web-to-print platform that allows you to target people who abandon online shopping carts automatically. This platform fuses the speed of the digital world with the conversion power of Direct Mail. This fully integrated breakthrough in technology means that real-time Direct Mail marketing is no longer a pipe dream. A fully customised letter and envelope can be created and be on the customers’ doorstep within 24-48 hours. 

The impact of Programmatic Mail is massive and opens up doors for marketers that were previously locked. Let’s explore where Programmatic Mail can help you regain those pesky abandoned baskets.

A simple reminder

Just the simple act of reminding a customer with a piece of Direct Mail that they have items waiting for them in a basket, could be enough to drive them over the edge and continue their checkout process. The power of Direct Mail is actually measurable! A recent report by Royal Mail MarketReach studied subconscious brain responses when we look at advertising through either Mail, social media or email. Direct Mail came out on top time and time again as it’s more engaging and will make a longer-lasting impression. Mail has a powerful impact on long-term memory encoding, showing +49% stronger than email & +35% stronger than social media advertising. So the simple act of reminding a customer who wasn’t ready to buy might be all they need to return to your site and click that COMPLETE ORDER button. 


One of the best selling points of Programmatic Mail is the ability to offer incentives to reactivate abandoned baskets. The number one reason why people don’t complete the checkout is the delivery costs. To combat this, use Programmatic Mail to offer a free carriage or even a discount on the carriage charge to encourage people to complete their checkout.

But that’s not all that the Direct Mail piece can do! If people were window shopping or weren’t sure what they were about to purchase, the letter can offer similar items or discounts on specific items, similar to the eBay and Amazon “you might also” like banners on their websites. This type of high personalisation is why some companies have experienced substantial conversion rates. 

Conversion rates 

Royal Mail have reported a case story for JD Williams. They had average abandonment rates around 69%, according to research from the Baynard Institute. They were using an eMail form of Programmatic Mail, but their research found that 22% of those who were abandoning baskets were using an ad-blocking software which was dampening the effect of the system. JD Williams wanted to see if a new channel would have better results. To test, they segmented their customers into the following groups:

  • A control group, where abandoned basket customers were sent no follow up messages. 
  • A group where customers received the existing two follow up emails. 
  • And finally, a group where customers received both follow-up emails plus an item of Direct Mail.

They found that the Direct Mail messaging increased response rates by 6% overall, the average order value increased by 8% and abandoned baskets fell by 14% overall. 

As you can see the superior conversion power of Direct Mail has a definitive impact on the overall campaign. 

Reactivating lost customers 

The power of Programmatic Mail is not just limited to abandoned baskets. The trigger point to when a letter is sent can be set anywhere. This means that you can use it to automatically send birthday offers or reactivate customers who have not ordered in a while. 

Direct Mail has a great history with reactivating customers. Our findings found that those who have been reactivated by Direct Mail spend more and stay customers for longer. 

The ability to have the system just “ticking over” in the background sending out highly targetted, personalised reactivation DM allows you to concentrate on other areas. 

Customer reactivation before the busiest time of the year for eCommerce could come in handy to increase your revenue. 


Programmatic Mail can become a permanent fixture to your marketing strategy and automatically generate leads and revenue. Get it before Christmas and reactivate abandoned baskets during your busiest time. Contact us today, and speak to our friendly team.

Marketing you can trust.

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