Anyone who’s worked on an ecommerce site knows the frustration of abandoned shopping carts.
Watching your traffic numbers increase while your revenue remains the same can be disheartening for any business owner. This is especially true when many of those visitors make it as far as adding a product to their carts, but decide not to follow through at the last minute.
This is an issue for many ecommerce store owners, and one that can be challenging to overcome. That’s why in this post, we’ll explain why you need a strategy for stopping shopping cart abandonment, along with five quick fixes you can start using today.
Why you need a cart abandonment strategy
Cart abandonment is a common problem within the ecommerce industry. In fact, the average ecommerce cart abandonment rate is a whopping 68%.
That means that for every ten shoppers who add a product to their cart on your website, only three of them will actually purchase that product. It’s clear, then, that this is an issue that can have a serious negative impact on your overall revenue.
The first step in remedying this issue is understanding why consumers abandon their carts. And as one survey found, there are many reasons that shoppers decide against purchases at the last minute, ranging from additional fees to complicated checkout processes to website errors.
And while every audience is slightly different, studying your site for these issues can help you determine why your shoppers fail to follow through with their purchases.
Then, you can create a plan for remedying those issues and reducing instances of cart abandonment on your site.
5 quick fixes to stop cart abandonment
Compelling customers to go through with their purchases can be compelling. That’s why we’ve put together a list of five quick fixes you can use to eliminate cart abandonment on your ecommerce website.
1. Eliminate unexpected costs
The most common reason shoppers abandon their carts is that extra costs like shipping, taxes, and fees are too high. In fact, 60% of the respondents in that study reported abandoning a cart for this reason over the previous three months.
Beyond that, 23% of respondents said they changed their minds because they couldn’t calculate order costs upfront.
This indicates that unexpected costs can kill your conversion rates. Fortunately, this is an issue you can eliminate by adjusting the way you share your pricing information.
If you suspect that your shipping costs are leading to cart abandonment, try offering free shipping as a promotion. If you notice that this leads to an increase in conversion rate, consider covering shipping costs for all orders, or for orders over a certain amount.
And if you don’t list costs upfront because you sell custom or made-to-order products, consider adding pricing estimates, or even a cost calculator to your site.
Even if the prices aren’t set in stone, having a general range can help shoppers feel more comfortable contacting you about a product.
2. Save your shoppers’ carts
The ecommerce industry has made it easier than ever before for shoppers to research all of their options before making a purchase. That’s why today, 84% of online shoppers are comparison shoppers.
This means that the chances of a new customer finding your site, reading about a product, and purchasing it within a few minutes are slim. Even if they like what they see, many of your visitors will check out your competitors’ sites to see what else is out there.
They’ll want to know what other brands have to offer, and whether there’s a better deal available. Then, if they decide that your product is still the best option, they’ll come back to complete their purchase.
When they make that choice, it’s your responsibility to make it as easy as possible for them to convert. And the best way to do this is to save the items in their cart.
3. Add trust signals
Many shoppers are understandably wary of sharing their credit card information with companies they’re unfamiliar with. In fact, 19% of shoppers say they’ve abandoned a purchase for this exact reason.
You can make sure that this issue doesn’t prevent your visitors from making a purchase by adding security badges to your site. Earning verification from brands like VeriSign, Norton, TRUSTe, and McAfee can show prospective buyers that their payment information is safe. Earning and adding these badges is easier than you might think, and can go a long way in establishing trust with new customers.
4. Use form analytics to simplify the checkout process
Many shoppers choose not to follow through with purchases simply because the checkout process is tedious and time-consuming. This means it’s in your best interest to make that process on your site as convenient for your visitors as possible.
And while you may be able to uncover some opportunities for simplifying checkout just by looking at the pages involved, it’s important to understand what that process looks like from the user perspective.
That’s where form analytics become extremely useful. You can use these reports to get a better idea of how visitors interact with any of the forms on your site.
In this case, however, you’ll want to focus on the forms included in your checkout process, paying special attention to determining where users leave.
For example, if you find many users drop off at a field asking them to create a password for an account, this indicates that visitors don’t want to take the time to complete this step. Try eliminating that field, and see whether it has a positive impact on conversions.
Then, continue to examine your forms to find more opportunities to improve.
5. Add user polls to your site
On-page polls and feedback have many helpful uses for site owners. This is especially true if you want to know why your visitors aren’t taking a desired action, because you can design polls that appear when a visitor fails to take that action.
If you’re looking for ways to reduce cart abandonment, then, you could opt to have a poll triggered by a user leaving your checkout page.
This way, you have the chance to ask those users why they decided against their purchase — and can use their feedback to determine whether there are any changes you can make to prevent other customers for abandoning their carts for the same reason in the future.
Shopping cart abandonment is an issue that every ecommerce store owner deals with. And although you can’t expect every visitor to follow through with their purchases, there are certainly steps you can take to encourage them to do so.
First, eliminate any unexpected costs. Be up front with your pricing, so that visitors aren’t caught off guard by additional fees at the last minute.
Then, save your shoppers’ carts to make it easy for them to return and convert, and add trust signals so that they know your site is secure.
Finally, use form analytics and user polls to identify ways to improve the user experience.
Each of these steps will help you eliminate the barriers that stand in the way of conversion, and make it all the more likely that your visitors will convert into valuable customers.