Shep Hyken is a customer service expert. Being a New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestselling author has made him an expert into matters of customer satisfaction and loyalty. He says:
“If you treat your customers as outsiders, they’ll find a competitor who doesn’t”
As much as we agree with this idea, we have also seen that many e-commerce business owners find it hard to make customers feel a sense of belonging when buying from them. This turns out to be a major reason for customers to compromise with their loyalty and find a similar product elsewhere.
So what is ‘Abandoned cart’?
It is when a potential customer starts the check-out process on an e-commerce website but drops out before completing the purchase. And the item(s) that are entered in the shopping cart but never make it through the transaction and hence ordered are termed as “abandoned” by the shopper. This is an important aspect of the online shopping process that online stores should pay careful attention to.
We are sure you must have faced this often. Even as casual shoppers ourselves we tend to leave our carts just in case to compare prices with other stores or having doubts over the platform's delivery services. The reasons can be many. To put this into perspective, it’s better to see how often people abandon carts on your website. The abandonment rate is calculated by dividing the total number of completed transactions by the total number of transactions that were initiated. This rate will identify what percentage of a site’s users signal purchase intent by adding an item to the cart, but don’t complete the purchase.
How is how you calculate the Shopping Cart Abandonment Rate of your Online Store?
You will need the total number of completed purchases and the number of created carts. Divide them, subtract from one and then multiply by 100. For example, if the total carts created were 500 in a month and out of that, only 100 purchases were completed, then your cart abandonment rate is 80%.
This is an important metric for e-commerce sites to keep track of because a high abandonment rate could signal a poor user experience or broken sales funnel. Reducing this leads directly to more sales and revenue, so optimizing the checkout flow a core area of focus for many online retailers. The average eCommerce store loses over 75% of its sales to cart abandonment. Some industries experience average cart abandonment as high as 83.6%.
Let’s have a quick look on what the the primary reasons for this problem are:
- Return policy is stiff and not comfortable for the customer
- The delivery speed is too slow
- Website crashed suddenly making the user drop out
- Express shipping us not offered
- Coupon/discount code is displayed yet not working
- Long and confusing checkout process
- Concerns about payment security because of lack of information on the same
- One reason you can’t control - The customer was conducting research to buy later
- User needs to create a new account before purchasing
- Unexpected shipping cost displayed at last
These 10 reasons contribute the most in cart abandonment and must be avoided at all costs. So let’s discuss how to do this. We have compiled some tips on how you can minimize shopping cart abandonment yourself.
1. Your Transaction page and forms must be trustworthy
You as an ecommerce business owner sometimes you might see transaction forms as a mere formality in the sales process. But on the contrary your transaction forms are just as vital a tool in establishing and building trust in your site as any other part of the process.
By asking your customers to fill out a form before proceeding to payment, you’re asking them to trust you with their personal information. The details go far beyond just their contact details; you will need their credit/debit card details, something many people are (understandably) hesitant to part with and their address.
Structure this page so that it looks clean and simple. Don’t ask for any detail that is unnecessary or irrelevant. Be precise and display security logos and logos of payment partners wherever necessary.
2. Offer Multiple Payment Options
Credit and debit card payment options with net banking and UPI services are necessary today. Consumers have more choices than ever before for how to pay for goods online. PayPal and other online payment options are still going strong.
When designing your ecommerce checkout pages, you don’t want anything to come between your customers and a satisfying, rewarding, and ultimately seamless shopping experience. However, if you’re only offering a single payment option (or very few choices), you’re putting unnecessary obstacles between your prospects and your sales.
3. Have an attractive refund, replace and return policy
Return policies are important for ecommerce since shoppers don’t have the luxury of trying on items or seeing a product in person. Offering customers a good return policy gives shoppers peace of mind when they purchase items from your store. You’ll want to clearly link to the return policy early in the checkout process to inform shoppers and hopefully entice them to buy.
4. Page load speeds make a huge difference
The last thing you want is for a customer to question if their order went through successfully. Having a fast loading page can satisfy your shoppers’ demand for a speedy checkout experience. Not only will your customers be happier, they’ll also be more inclined to buy additional products from your website because they wouldn’t have to wait as long.
5. Include a Strong Call to Action on Checkout Pages
Many sites fail to include any calls to action on their checkout pages whatsoever. The “logic” behind this seems to be rooted in the assumption that if a prospective customer has added something to their cart, then they no longer need any incentive to actually buy it – a fatal flaw in the marketer’s mindset. On the contrary, checkout pages are the perfect place for strong, clear calls to action that strengthen the resolve of the prospect to complete their purchase.
If your CTAs include ambiguous words such as “Continue”, consider testing them against clearer, more active verbs to see whether your CTAs can help visitors understand exactly what they’re doing and what’s expected of them.
Keep the messaging consistent throughout your CTAs, right through to your checkout process. If you favor friendly, connective language in your marketing material, maintain this approachable tone during the checkout process. If you’re leveraging urgency or another incentive, keep this pressure on during checkout.
6. Saving items in cart and putting items in wish list must be easy
When you shop at a brick-and-mortar store, you either commit to buy something or you don’t. You can stand in line and wait to pay for whatever’s in your cart, or you can leave the store with nothing. Shopping online isn’t as straightforward, however. Consumers expect to take advantage of the benefits of shopping online, including the ability to return to an ongoing order – sometimes repeatedly. To improve your conversion rates, make it effortless for users to return to carts-in-progress.
Saving a shopping cart should be as easy as clicking a single button. With so many potential distractions (both in “real life” and online), you should almost expect disruption in the checkout process, which is why it’s crucial to allow shoppers to return to their carts later to complete their purchase at a time that’s convenient for them.
7. Offer strong assurances that relieves the customers
Hesitation and uncertainty are the mortal enemies of ecommerce retailers. The more you can do to either preemptively overcome potential objections or continually reassure prospects, the more likely you are to see your conversion rates increase. One of the best ways to overcome hesitation in the online purchasing journey is by offering bulletproof money-back guarantees or other assurances.
Offering a no-questions-asked money-back guarantee (or similar offer of assurance) greatly reduces the potential objections a prospect might have about buying from you. It shifts the focus from the price and terms of sale to the actual product, which hopefully should speak for itself. If a customer does have reservations about buying from you, it shouldn’t be out of fear of losing their money.
8. Shipping costs must be declared beforehand
There are few things more frustrating about shopping online than expecting to pay one price, only to discover you’re being stung with a whole mess of hidden costs, fees, and surcharges – and one of the worst costs to discover after you’ve begun the checkout process is outrageous shipping charges.
Not only will a majority of consumers go to great lengths to avoid paying shipping costs, they’re also highly sensitive to how shipping costs are presented. Data reveals that unexpected shipping costs account for almost one-third of all abandoned ecommerce shopping carts:
9. Use Remarketing to Target Abandoners
Our best tip for combatting shopping cart abandonment is to accept that some customers will inevitably abandon their carts, and go after them with remarketing campaigns later.
Remarketing is absolutely essential for ecommerce retailers, perhaps more so than for any other type of online business or advertiser. If you’re not remarketing to people who came close to crossing the line, you’re effectively restricting yourself to just one shot at getting visitors to convert in a single session – an almost inconceivable feat in today’s multi-device online environment.
It is perfect for targeting shopping cart abandoners. As Facebook ads are inherently visual (limiting advertisers to just 20% of available ad space for text), they’re ideal for capturing the aspirational qualities of your products that attracted your visitors in the first place. That said, remarketing with Google AdWords and Bing Ads is also a great idea, especially for products or services that may not have as much innate visual appeal or boast a unique selling proposition that’s difficult to convey with imagery. You can read more about Facebook remarketing here.
Hope this article helped you with your doubts on Abandoned cart issues. We offer some tools to help you with this, check them out here. Feel free to reach out to us if you have any other queries regarding this.