No doubt about it, abandoned shopping carts are a pain. A customer was on your site, engaged with your products and was interested enough to add one (or more) to their cart. Then? They’re gone. The sale wasn’t completed and you’ve been effectively “ghosted.”
Why does this happen? And what can you do to help ensure it won’t continue to be a problem? Read on, friends. Because that’s what we’re tackling in today’s post!
Abandoned Shopping Carts Happen A LOT!
The dreaded incomplete sale happens more often that you may think. In fact, as of the end of 2018, statistics on abandoned shopping carts ranged from 50 to 80 percent, topping out globally at around 75. And those lost sales add up. How much money is sitting in those lonely carts? In the two to four TRILLION dollar range. Yikes!
Look, consumers are a picky bunch, I know I am when I’m shopping! Being confident and comfortable making online purchases is the norm today and spans the generations. So anything your site does (or doesn’t do) to take away from those feelings becomes detrimental. Here’s a look at some of the most common “whys” behind abandoned sales.
How to Really Annoy Online Customers
If you’re experiencing too many abandoned shopping carts, your eCommerce site could be annoying potential customers. Here’s a quick check list of top annoyances, in no particular order:
- Site is too slow
- Checkout is too complicated
- Hidden, last minute fees
- Complicated delivery process
- Costly shipping rates
- People have to sign-up to make a purchase
- Limited payment options
- Sub-par returns policy
If you check one or two things on this list…? You might be ok (but you should still consider fixing the issues). If you’ve checked a bunch? You’re in trouble.
How to Lower the Number of Abandoned Shopping Carts
I don’t think there’s a company out there who doesn’t experience abandoned shopping carts. Some people use the checkout process to calculate taxes or shipping costs. Some use it when costing out a dream trip. And some just have second thoughts when they have to click that “place order” button. But there are ways to reduce their frequency and make the shopping process friction-free for potential customers.
First, make sure you keep everything simple. One road block is enough to make a potential customer reconsider. Allow easy guest check-out options, and reduce as much as you possibly can the number of steps required to complete a purchase. Also, consider implementing a “one step” purchasing process for return customers.
Speed, speed, speed! A slow loading page or too many error fields will have customers dropping you like a hot potato. Buyers sharing their information online need to feel 100 percent confident in your company and your site. And nothing dents confidence like a sub-par user experience. And make sure your system can handle peak buying times like Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Boxing Day when traffic (and sales!) increases dramatically.
Make it easy for people to give you their money. More often than not, making a purchase is a big decision (unless you’re loaded! LOL), and it doesn’t take much for someone to think twice about sealing the deal. So, don’t spring hidden costs on people at the last minute. And don’t overcharge for shipping – in fact, provide free shipping if you can, or incentivize it: “Spend X amount for free delivery!” Provide multiple payment options – for example, more than one credit card provider – and consider including PayPal and online banking. Some companies are even providing “digital layaway,” which is apparently a huge hit with the millennial set!
To Wrap it Up
There are many other improvements and/or tweaks you can make to your eCommerce site to help stop abandoned shopping carts littering your landing pages. And there are also fun ways to remind people they’ve left without completing their purchase, something we’ll explore in a later post.
Simply put, it’s quite a compliment when a person shops around, does their research, lands with you and ends up purchasing your product or service. Treat the entire process as such, and make customers feel like an honoured guest on your site.
What do you think? Do you experience issues when shopping online that have led to abandoned shopping carts? What drives you crazy? And/or how does your e-Commerce site stand up to scrutiny when going through the above check-list? Add your comments below!