Imagine this: Jess, a software professional, is waiting at the airport lounge. He’s wondering how to kill time. He opens his favorite shopping website and starts browsing through the products. He likes some items which he wants to bookmark for later. So, he tosses them in the shopping cart. He continues to do some more window shopping. It’s time for his flight.
He closes the site, leaving his chosen items to gather virtual dust.
Statistics reveal that approximately 68% of online shopping carts are abandoned. Think about it. Would Jess do the same in a brick and mortar store? Probably not. He would have exerted himself by visiting the store, hunted for things that he needed, pushed the trolley through countless aisles, and finally reached the checkout counter. Would he walk out without taking the treasure trove for which he spent so much effort? Quite unlikely!
However, this happens all the time in the world of e-commerce. For e-commerce players, it’s the typical case of ‘many a slip between the cup and the lip.’ Let us see how e-commerce companies can tackle this issue:
1.Trigger automated messages/ texts to cart abandoners:
‘Not ready for purchase’ is one of the very common reasons why customers abandon their carts. Many times, it takes multiple visits for a customer to complete the order. Fortunately, three-quarters of those abandoning their carts intend to return. So how do you bring them back? Nurture them through a series of automated messages.
Let us understand this through the below example:
46% of businesses that tracked abandoners’ spending stated that customers spent more than the original cart value after being nurtured. You can engage and nurture lost customers with automated messaging.
2. Provide convenient checkout experience:
Your customer will get frustrated if he has to click on multiple screens to reach your check out page – it’s the digital equivalent of waiting in a long queue at the checkout counter. Don’t have a guest checkout option? You are sure to put off your prospect.
Reduce the number of pages between your shop and checkout path. Your conversions will increase if you break up your checkout process into bite-sized chunks so that each step takes no more than 30 seconds to fill out. Additionally, do not force your prospects to register to complete their purchase. See how eBay makes it makes it easy for its shoppers to check out as a guest:
3. Provide complete disclosure on hidden charges/ shipping fees:
41% of online shoppers abandon their purchases because of hidden fees that are only revealed upon check out. 63% of customers may cancel a purchase due to shipping costs. Make sure that the number next to the dollar sign doesn’t catch anyone by surprise. You want to make your goods appear as desirable as possible, but an apparently low-price tag doesn’t help if it means that extra charges are added later. If you can’t give free shipping, make sure your customer is aware of these charges as early as possible. It will make your brand appear more honest and transparent about your pricing.
4. Provide ratings and reviews on your site:
61% of customers read online reviews before making a purchase decision. In the olden days, personal recommendations were the key to influence a buyer’s decisions. As we live in a digital world, these decisions are influenced by online reviews. Customer reviews help in eliminating any doubts potential customers may have about a product. Give customers this information, so they don’t need to leave your site to do their research elsewhere.
You will hardly come across anyone who has completed their purchase on Amazon.com without going through the review section. Amazon’s reviews are as detailed as their product description.
5. Display local currency:
Last minute exchange rates can throw a visitor off and deter them from clicking the “Submit Order” button. If you accept international orders, it’s important that you display the cost in the shopper’s local currency.
Mango does a good job by asking to choose your country as soon as you visit their website.
This makes the purchase process smooth as you get to see only those items that are available in your country along with prices in your local currency.
6. Provide assistance in completing the purchase process:
Online shopping can be a lonely process where customers do not have the luxury of asking for a second opinion or requesting assistance when they are stuck on a page. Adding an 800-number or online chat support will significantly help. A survey found that 63% customers were more likely to return to a website that offered live chat. A further 38% of respondents said they had made their purchase due to the chat session itself.
Nike does an excellent job by offering Live chat on the top of the checkout page:
Losing a customer due to any reason means losing precious dollars that you almost had. Fret not! Even if your customer has abandoned a cart, you can still bring him back with proper nurturing. There is immense economic value in nurturing! Are you up for it?
What are your best tips to preventing cart abandonment? Tell us below or tweet us!
-  68.81% – average documented online shopping cart abandonment rate http://baymard.com/lists/cart-abandonment-rate
-  Customers spent more than the original cart value after being nurtured http://www.slideshare.net/JamesVizor1/the-state-of-ecommerce-marketing
-  Consumers hate surprises at checkout http://www.bizreport.com/2010/05/webcredible-consumers-hate-surprises-at-checkout.html
-  63% of customers may cancel a purchase due to shipping costs https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/64726
-  Customer reviews affect 61% of online shoppers http://www.brandview.com/2015/03/customer-reviews-affect-61-percent-of-online-shoppers/
-  How Helpful Is Live Chat? http://www.emarketer.com/Article.aspx?R=10072