How can ecommerce retailers prevent shopping cart abandonment?
Cart abandonment is, after all, the single biggest hurdle ecommerce retailers must overcome. And what a hurdle it is:
- From 2006 - 2013, the average rate of abandonment, based on 33 separate studies, was 67.35%.
- In 2015, an estimated $4 trillion worth of merchandise was abandoned in online shopping carts.
- According to a 2016 study, the average conversion rate for new customers is 2.4% compared to returning customers which is a bit better at 4.5%.
One of the main differences between online and traditional window-shopping is that ecommerce customers are more likely to toss items into a virtual shopping cart and then abandon them. And while there are countless reasons why online customers may abandon a cart, it is essential to find out what those specific reasons are.
Statista has identified some of the most common which include:
- Unexpected costs.
- Not ready to purchase (only browsing).
- Just looking/found a better deal.
- Complicated navigation and checkout.
- Security concerns.
- Did not find the preferred shipping and payment methods.
Obviously, reasons for abandonment will vary from retailer to retailer and from customer to customer. But, regardless of the reasons, there are steps ecommerce retailers can take to prevent abandonment and ensure higher rates of conversion. Here are a few that are sure to work.
1/ Personalize your communication
Clearly, your ecommerce customers have some interest in the products you are offering. Why else would they be visiting you in the first place? For this reason, take a close look at what they are browsing for and consider asking them if they wish to be notified of similar or related deals or offers.
Because push notifications don’t require your customers to share an email address, they are more likely to opt in. And they will appreciate the fact that you are able to create personalized, relevant campaigns, campaigns which are more likely to inspire them to complete a purchase. As Localytics has discovered, on average, 65% of customers return within 30 days when push notifications are enabled, compared with only 19% of those who do not have push enabled.
Your notifications could be used to remind customers of the products they have left behind, announce limited time offers and deals, send reminders to complete a purchase, or provide informative content.
2/ Provide clear call-to-actions
Many retail sites fail to include any calls-to-actions (CTAs) on their checkout pages. According to one study, less than 75% of small business retailers include a CTA anywhere on their website.
One reason for this is that many marketers wrongly assume that if a prospective customer has already added something to their cart, they no longer need any incentive to actually buy it. However, checkout pages are the perfect place for strong, clear CTAs which incentivize customers to complete their purchases. Online content marketing company Brafton reports that a well-designed, well-placed CTA can increase ecommerce rates by 22% quarter over quarter, increasing revenue by 83%.
The more relevant, the better. Create different messages for prospects, new customers, and those who keep coming back. Tailor messages around each customer’s industry, specific interests, and market segment. For maximum effectiveness, pair data from your CRM with responses from feedback surveys to find out which precise actions are most likely to inspire your customers.
3/ Prominently feature customer feedback
It’s no secret that online reviews can be significant but just how important are they to preventing shopping cart abandonment? SearchEngineLand reports that 88% of consumers trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation which is somewhat surprising, considering most online reviews are posted by total strangers. The same report finds that only 12% of the population does not regularly read reviews before making a purchase.
Unedited, authentic feedback reassures your customers that they are making the right decision when buying from you. Include quotes, product ratings, and testimonials from previous customers, and if possible, from authoritative figures in your industry who are recognizable to your customers.
The more you can increase your credibility in the market, the less likely your customers are to have second thoughts. Given that customers are going to trust other customers before they trust you, it’s worth your time and effort to gather as much feedback as you can from existing customers, feedback which can only help customers feel more secure in their decision to complete a transaction with you. Never underestimate the power feedback has to instill trust in customers and good will towards your business.
Of course not all shopping cart abandonments can be helped. But if you use these tips, you’re sure to see a decrease in abandonments and an increase in conversion rates and – ultimately – profits. Now is the time to make the necessary changes which will enable you to dominate the market and reap massive rewards!