Shopping Cart Abandonment: How to Prevent It
I bet you have often seen a couple of abandoned shopping carts at supermarkets and malls. Perhaps the customer that abandoned the shopping cart did not want them or realized that s/he couldn’t pay for it. This is something that happens quite often, and on the Internet, shopping cart abandonment, as this phenomenon is called, is a common occurrence.
Many e-tailers have to constantly bear with this malady, as users never reach the check out page and abandon their purchases and simply move on. There are many reasons for abandoning a shopping cart, and one of the main reasons for not purchasing anything is because those customers never intended to purchase anything, in the beginning, at all.
Hence companies that rely on online sales start panicking once this phenomenon starts taking place in significantly large numbers. Today, many eCommerce sites suffer from shopping cart abandonment. The figures for some eCommerce websites are somewhere close to 60%.
There are many reasons why shopping carts are abandoned – they are the sad reality of today’s eCommerce world:
- One of the primary reasons is impatience- many people want what they right away. They cannot wait a moment to fulfill their desires and waiting long enough for a page to load or fill up a small form on a screen is asking for too much of a commitment.
- Yet another reason is many buyers become confused while checking out, to the point of abandoning the site. Many customers need ‘hand holding’ and this is akin to providing them live assistance in the form of a shopping assistant at a retail store.
- Some customers do not wish to reveal their personal information on the Internet. Asking them for more information could cause the to become over cautious and cause them to fear your website. This is especially the case with credit card details. They could become suspicious if you ask for too much information, thereby reducing the chances of achieving that crucial sale.
- Some people are gripped by indecision. In many an instance, they are simply browsing your site for information and pretending to be a customer. They are there to look at competitive pricing, shipping and taxation fees, and to compare other sundry details. Given the chances, such customers might return to your website to make a purchase if your website gives them a better deal.
If you are a keen observer and discern that your conversion rate is going down, then it might be a sign that your shopping cart has a problem. In this case you can take some positive measures to ensure that your shopping cart gets back in order once again:
- Reduce the number of steps required to complete a purchase
- Introduce and implement the right security measures for credit card transactions
- Make sure you can communicate these to your customers
- With the registration process, why not prompt them to enter an email address and password after they have entered the ordering process.
- You may allow customers to order without registering (as a guest), but it will be better that you let them know the benefits of registering as a customer.
- Ensure that the tax as well as the shipping information are easy to notice.
- Customers need not enter their address twice. For example, their shipping address might be the same as their billing address. Hence just provide a tick box for them to confirm that the addresses are the same.
- Do you offer multiple payment options to your customers? If not, then start by offering a couple of popular options.
- Have your added security logos to your checkout pages?
- Does your customer service information figure prominently on the website?
- Are your reviews fake or genuine? Customers are getting smarter and they can easily figure out which ones stand out and which ones are genuine.
- Is your website slow to load? Run the benchmarking tests to find out if you can speed it up. ?In the online world, even milliseconds count!
- Even if you have gone through this entire checklist and discover that customers are still abandoning your website, why not send them targeted emails aimed at converting them? You will be surprised that many indeed do come back and shop for the goods they had abandoned.
Although shopping cart abandonment is quite prevalent, there are ways and means to work around it and reduce abandonment and the resultant impact itself. Knowing why people abandon your shopping cart and remedying the situation can go a long way in reducing this unwanted phenomenon.