Shopping Cart Abandonment Strategies
Darshit Parmar

About Darshit Parmar

Darshit Parmar is expertise with Project Management and SEO Analyst, and shares his 10 years of experience with Ecommerce Business Owners in making their brands and business a place in their own field. Darshit is certified with Google Analytic Individual and Oracle 9i. Throughout his career, Darshit has gained the experience in Magento eCommerce UI Design keeping the principles of SEO in mind. The knowledge he shares in his blogs has really helped many eCommerce Business owners in marketing their brands and businesses. He always says to his team that "There’s no shortage of remarkable ideas, what’s missing is the will to execute them."

Being an online seller is a strenuous task. Imagine a physical store having the number of visitors, to be precise, potential customers to be 1000. Out these 1000, only 300 make it to the billing counter and actually pay, the others just stand there, look at your things while taking care of their baby, or checking items available at your adversary’s shop through some window, or watching movie trailers. A few of them are holding your products in one hand while their gaze is on the other product from some other store. Each of these things is done right from your own store. Sounds weird, right? No one would ever do this in real, physical store. However, this is how the current e-commerce scenario is.

Shopping cart abandonment has become one of the biggest issues that the e-commerce world is facing today. With a prominent increase in online availability of products, shoppers have n number of options to choose from which leads to the comparison of prices, quality check, and availability, which was a distant dream in store shopping. This and various other reasons are responsible for shopping cart abandonment. Before we discuss how to pacify this grave pitfall of revenue, let’s check some shopping cart abandonment statistics.

Statistics that Prove you need Disparate Strategies to beat Shopping Cart Abandonment:

Listrak, an online retail solutions developer tracks real-time shopping cart abandonment rate and according to their tracking system, the average cart abandonment ratio for the past six months is as high as 78%. Yes, it is difficult to grasp the fact that 78 people leave their cart out of every 100 and don’t make a purchase at all. Users abandon their cart due to several reasons which could be handled artistically by the e-tailers. According to the research conducted by baymard, any average site can increase its conversion rate by 35.26% by enhancing the usability of the site. After all, everything that a customer wants is a fine user experience. Baymard also conducted a study that involved US adults and on the basis of their 1,044 responses, these were their reasons of cart ditching.

It is evident from these stats that you will soon need to lower the abandonment rate if you want to stay in the business, especially if you are one of the small retailers. We have listed some of the most effective tactics which may help you in decreasing the shopping cart ditching rate.

  1. Don’t surprise your customers with extra costs in the end

There is nothing like surprises provided they have some advantage. Imagine a retail site having a surprise in store which you announce when the buyer lands on the checkout page. This kind of surprise may excite your buyer and block his idea of abandoning your cart.

Naturally, the scenario completely changes when you surprise your customers with hidden costs, fees, surcharges added to the value of the product, conveniently in the end. Discrepancy regarding prices is one thing that consumers can’t tolerate especially the shipping fees. According to Ecommizer’s published results of VWO Study, the discrepancy in costs results in 28% of the total cart abandonment.

So, what do you do? Take a loss and don’t apply those charges?

No. You are upfront about the extra costs that a customer would need to pay to buy that product instead of luring them with this strategy of adding costs later. Any online retailer using this strategy to cover their extra costs are observed to have the highest abandonment rates.

Give your customers an exact idea as to how much extra will they need to pay, so only the ones who don’t have any issue with the price will reach the checkout page, and eventually there will be a prominent decrease in your cart abandonment rate.

  1. Free shipping is the golden gate to abandonment reduction

Yes, there are window shoppers and compares, and others who visit your site just to abandon the cart. But, there are genuine buyers too who in spite of their interest in buying your product abandons you at the last moment. Why?

Well, we all, including the sellers, hate paying shipping costs. Customers go to varied lengths to avoid shipping fees and if can’t find a way through, they mostly choose to abandon the cart. Offering free shipping or minimal shipping costs immediately affects cart abandonment rate in a positive way.

Recommended Read : How to configure the free shipping method in Magento store

In fact, according to a blog post by Kissmetrics that cited the study of the effects of shipping costs on complete.com, 93% of the customers agreed on free shipping to be the factor likely to convince them for making a purchase.

There are obviously other factors such as discounts that may affect free shipping costs, but it has usually proven to be the golden gate to a retailer’s happy place of higher conversion rates.

  1. Develop the trust factor through your transaction forms

Web crimes need no introduction today and we are all aware of how the internet has become a daily need which cannot be avoided even if we fear victimization of these crimes. Online selling has become a big market now and this year is believed to be that year when online selling will beat every other mode of shopping.

Although shopping through the web is overtaking the traditional shopping techniques, people first look for the trust factor before making a purchase through the web. Security badges (eg. “Norton Secured”) gives assurance to your customers that their personal details including their financial card details are held safe by the company through various encryption techniques and other necessary factors.

Thinking otherwise can affect your business in a negative way. Shopify conducted a survey where the participants were asked about their shopping choices directed by security logos and they got following results:

Not only does the presence of these badges affect your sales, but also what security firm you choose to protect the information matters a lot. Almost 76% of the people gave an affirmative answer when asked whether they avoided purchasing something online because they did not recognize the logo. Baymard institute conducted a survey on “Which badge gives you the best sense of trust when paying online?” and got the following results:

Thus, it is essential to develop the trust factor using these logos on your checkout pages to reduce your cart abandonment rate.

Recommended Read : How to Protect Your Magento Ecommerce Store Against Fraudulent Transactions

  1. Add an advancement indicator on checkout pages or design a single page checkout

Filling out the details to check out from eCommerce sites is the worst part of online shopping for consumers. Imagine the same checkout process in our real world where the cashier asks for all those information. There is no way we would tolerate that, and many of your customers actually don’t entertain complex checkout process and eventually abandon their cart.

Recommended Read : Reducing Abandoned Carts and Increasing Sales : Get the latest Checkout Design

Insist your designers and developers on making checkout pages simple. The best way of reducing your cart abandonment rate is to make a single page checkout on your site. Include all requirements such as billing information, shipping information, payment method, order review and confirmation of order, everything on a single page. The following Magento theme is one of the great examples of such an extension.

Recommended Read : How to Choose A Perfect Magento Theme for your eCommerce

If you are not a big fan of single page checkout system, the second best thing to do is to add a progress indicator on your checkout pages. Showing your customers where they stand in this process, and what is next might instill patience during the checkout process. This also helps in making the entire process crystal clear, easy to understand and hassle free.

Although only almost 11% of the buyers cited it a reason in a study, complex checkout plays a big role in cart abandonment. Overcoming this issue is rather simpler and achievable.

  1. Don’t force your visitors to sign-up to make a purchase

Building email list is necessary for business, but not to an extent where you start losing your definite customers. Not offering guest checkout, or rather forcing your consumers for signing up to lure them in future is making you lose them right now.

According to an infographic published by Invesp, almost 14% of the total potential buyers left without making a purchase because the seller did not offer any option for guest checkout.

Offering guest checkout may be a bitter option for the sellers as that offer is a confirmation of losing a potential target from the list of future buyers. However, you can always lure them with sign-up offers which usually work, but that should completely be the decision of your consumers. There are people who actually prefer an online seller just because they don’t make signing up a compulsion. So, you may never know, it may actually help you with returning customers for an easy shopping experience.

  1. Add a compelling CTA on checkout pages

If you are yet to use exit-intent popups to retain your fleeing customers, now is the time to design a compelling copy of call-to-action to reduce your cart abandonment rate and boost your conversion.

ou can deploy an exit pop-up on any page you want, but as we are talking about cart abandonment, the most effective location on the site would be the checkout page. When the user is about to leave, this pop-up message may display an attractive offer that a very few could ignore if they are really there to buy.

Offering discounts are the most common and efficient strategy for checkout CTA. You can set a timer on availing discounts which may result in the immediate purchase in some cases lowering the rate of cart desertion.

The above exit overlay intends to target the current sale as well as on building an e-mail list by giving a long window for using the offered discount. These overlays tend to think the customers twice or even more than that before they leave their cart.

Recommended Read : Checkout Page Strategies to Improve your eCommerce Site Conversion Rates

  1. Be flexible on payment options

Do you really want a mere reason like “Your site didn’t offer ‘x’ payment option” to stop the users from buying your stuff? Nobody wants that! Give your consumers seamless options for making their payment.

Debit and credit cards have now become old school and are replaced by wallets. Digital wallets such as Google wallet, PayPal, Android Pay, Apple Pay, etc. are some of the most trending payment options currently. It is evidently important to add some of these options along with the traditional payment gateways.

Ecommerce websites can also launch their own wallets as Walmart and Amazon have opted to do. Although the choices would be much different now, a certain survey had cited Amazon payments the second most opted option for online retail shopping.

Offering various payment options nullifies any chance of cart abandonment because of a trivial reason such as unavailability of favorable payment method.

  1. Work on your cart, there are many things you can do

Virtual shopping is difficult, especially when customers are actually there on a shopping spree. Forgetting which items, how many products, and the total amount is very common in this scenario. However, this also is one of the reasons why customers abandon their cart after seeing the extent of their purchased goods and its total amount.

Thus, it is necessary to work on your cart in such a way that it never becomes the reason for inspiring desertion. Everyone must have noticed Amazon’s cart, right? It displays the number of products added which works on the subconscious level of the customer’s brain and signals him whether to stop or continue buying.

The other thing you can add to your cart is the total value of the order. Woocommerce offers this extension that you can easily add to your site and make your customer’s shopping experience much better.

These changes to your cart will affect your consumers while they shop. Making them aware of the number of items along with an estimate of their bill lowers the chance of cart abandonment.

Recommended Read : E-Commerce Checkout Process Case Study : Macy’s Website

  1. Scarcity as a strategy works wonders

Creating a demand is an art which very few of the retailers possess. Scarcity is one such strategy which does the job of giving just a little push to the customers on making that much-brooded-upon purchase.

There are many ways of executing this strategy like e-mails, CTAs, etc. However, on-site, you can deploy it in two ways. The first method of using scarcity is to convey the customers as to how many units of that product are remaining. For instance, if a customer is looking at a product, you can flash “Just 2 left”, which may get the customer worked up if he is really interested in that product.

Another way of using this strategy is to add a timer which is generally used in flash sales, season discounts, and other deals. It constantly reminds the looker that if he buys before the timer stops, he can avail a big discount or free shipping. This highly targets on actual shoppers and convert them easily.

The most beneficial thing about this strategy is that it has the potential to convert even the window shoppers with its taste of urgency. So, a prominent backdrop in cart abandonment is a sure shot with an implementation of scarcity.

  1. Retarget the abandoners using subtle techniques

There is always a positive way of thinking, even when your customers abandon their loaded carts. Think that they got caught up in some urgent work and couldn’t get a chance of ordering and retarget them with unique remarketing techniques.

Using Google AdWords, emails, social media, etc. to remind your customers that they left their cart without making a purchase may bring them back to your site. Remarketing is the process where you have the opportunity to convert your once-lost customer into a regular one.

It is not necessary to retarget you’re abandoning customers through AdWords, other social mediums as well ass offline mediums such as SMS may work as well. However, Ads have a benefit of live visuals reminding them of the discarded products.

How so ever you may choose to do it, you must retarget you’re leaving customers which may become your loyal customers. So don’t panic if shoppers abandon you, target them again and boost your conversion rate through this impeccable strategy.

Recommended Read : How to Track Magento Shopping Cart Abandonment in Google Analytics

These 10 strategies of working on the issue of shopping cart abandonment are bound to work if deployed correctly. Make sure your website is user-friendly and easy on navigating. One more factor that affects the abandonment rate is the loading time of the page. It should be minimum if you don’t want your customers to get irritated and leave your portal without making a purchase. Work on each of the factors gradually and compare the results to observe the difference.

One comment

  1. Excellent post Darshit, I thoroughly enjoyed your post and really find it useful. Shopping cart abandonment is the worst nightmare of e Commerce site owners and they anyhow want to reduce it. Whenever someone adds a product in cart, their heart skips a beat not to see them leaving afterwards. So in that situations your tips for recovery are very good and approachable. Thanks for sharing.

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