Why do shoppers abandon their online cart?

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Date: 28 June 2022

An abandoned shopping cart

88% of online shoppers admit to abandoning an online shopping cart without completing the transaction. [Forrester]

This number illustrates how cart abandonment is the nemesis of online retailers. And with experience, we agree how frustrating it is to lose a valuable customer just one step before the purchase.

This article will explore the main reasons behind shopping cart abandonment and shed some light on the techniques you can use to reduce the number of lost sales.

Shopping cart abandonment - An incomplete purchase cycle

Online shopping cart abandonment is the phenomenon where potential buyers add products to the cart but end up abandoning the purchase before making a payment.

For online marketers, online shopping cart abandonment is an important metric to look at as it is directly related to conversion rates.

While online shopping cart abandonment does not affect the ranking of the ecommerce website, it directly affects the revenue generated each year.

Why do shoppers abandon their cart?

As a business owner, it's essential that you understand why your customers leave your online store before completing the purchase cycle. You will need direct access to your website analytics data to understand where and why customers are abandoning their cart.

Having read multiple reports on why customers leave the online shopping cart just before making the purchase, here’s what we think:

Unexpected shipping costs

Unexpected shipping costs are a major factor contributing to online shopping cart abandonment. This usually happens because of the sudden increase in the amount customers need to pay for the product.

For instance, the shipping cost is usually only visible once the customer is about to complete the order and pay for the product. If the customer is not happy with the additional cost, they may start to re-evaluate their purchase.

Don't offer the preferred method of payment

The checkout process is completed when the customer adds their details in the payment gateway. Some customers will be comfortable with your default payment method, while others will prefer an alternative payment method that is more convenient.

If you do not offer alternative payment options, customers might end up abandoning the shopping cart. If you run an ecommerce store, make sure you offer multiple payment options.

For instance, you might accept credit cards and bank transfers. But to meet customer expectations, you should consider other payment options such as Paypal, Stripe or cryptocurrency options such as Bitcoin Loophole and third-party wallets to help reduce shopping cart abandonment.

Complicated checkout process

It's a fact that when the checkout process is difficult customers will abandon their shopping cart. According to a report from Baymard Institute:

  • 24% of online shoppers leave their cart if they are asked to create an account.
  • 18% of customers do not complete the process if it becomes complicated.

To reduce online shopping cart abandonment, you need to make the checkout process simple and fast. While you can encourage customers to create an account, you must also have a guest option where they can shop without creating an account.

Steps to reducing shopping cart abandonment

  • Be Transparent About Your Shipping Process: Transparency is the key. Make your terms and conditions, shipping options, charges and prices clear. Show your customers the shipping process and how much it will cost them.
  • Show the delivery costs in your shopping cart: After deciding to make a purchase, it can be a nasty shock to discover you have to pay extra for shipping. Let customers know upfront about any extra charges or what the threshold is to qualify for free shipping.
  • Provide different payment options: Your website will receive different customers with different payment preferences. You need to have multiple payment options to meet their varied needs and expectations.
  • Follow up with marketing: If a buyer has an abandoned cart, they are a 'warm prospect' and may already have an account set up. You should try to convert the sale by sending handy reminders.

In summary

In this article, we have learned what online shopping cart abandonment is, why customers leave the cart and what we can do about it. All of this leads to one conclusion, while online shopping cart abandonment is sometimes inevitable, there are things you can do to reduce it.

The ecommerce market is full of stiff competition. To stay in the game, you must try different methods to convert your visitors into paying customers.

Copyright 2022. Featured post made possible by Mashum Mollah.

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