Reduce Shopping Cart Abandonment – Best Practices for E-Commerce

Reduce Shopping Cart Abandonment – Best Practices for E-Commerce

Reading Time: 7 minutes(Last Updated On: April 6, 2021)

Feeling like your customers keep leaving you high and dry?

Shopping cart abandonment has got to be among the most frustrating parts of running an e-commerce business. When lots of your customers come this close to completing purchases but bail at the last minute, the effect can be discouraging to say the least.

That’s why cart abandonment solutions exist, and that’s what we’re here to discuss today. So buckle up for an info-packed ride into the world of online shopping cart abandonment (and how to combat it)!


Online shopping cart abandonment

Online shopping cart abandonment is an enormous problem for e-commerce businesses around the world. Think we’re exaggerating?

In March 2020, nearly 90% of all online shopping orders around the globe were abandoned, illustrating just how crucial it is for online sellers to reduce cart abandonment. But in order to prevent shopping cart abandonment, you’ll first need to understand why online shoppers abandon their carts in the first place!

After some research, we found the top 5 reasons for cart abandonment are:

  • Shipping costs too much (63%)
  • Discount code doesn’t work (46%)
  • Order takes forever to ship (36%)
  • Have to re-enter credit card info (30%)
  • Have to re-enter shipping info (25%)


Nearly 90% of all #onlineshopping orders around the globe were abandoned in March 2020 - how is your #ecommercebusiness fighting those odds? Click To Tweet


Other reasons include wanting to compare offers on different websites, lack of payment options, unexpected costs, technical issues, and so on. It’s also worth noting that not all e-commerce ‘categories’ suffer the same rates of shopping cart abandonment. For instance, 40% of orders for fashion items are abandoned while only a tiny 2% of fitness equipment orders are abandoned.

There are a variety of factors that come into play when discussing why online shopping cart abandonment happens – which highlights the importance of having a system in place to analyze cart abandonment patterns. Without that data tracking, it can be much more difficult to develop shopping cart abandonment solutions.


Analyzing shopping cart abandonment

You may be relieved to hear that the average online shopping cart abandonment rate isn’t as high as the total percentage of cart abandonments mentioned above (that mind-boggling 90% we noted).

That said, the average shopping cart abandonment rate, which hovers around 70%, can still intimidate even the most seasoned e-commerce business owners. It’s important to keep that number in mind though so that you can determine how serious of an issue your cart abandonment really is. For instance, a 75% cart abandonment rate sounds super high on the face of it, but much less so when you compare it to the average.

You can ask yourself some questions to get a better perspective of where you stand and work to prevent shopping cart abandonment:

  • Where are the drop-off points in your payment funnel?
  • Are the issues technical or content-related?
  • Do you need to make a few slight adjustments to your checkout process?
  • Do you need to perform a complete overhaul of the checkout?


Cart abandonment solutions are a must if you want to ensure that you’re growing a profitable businesshere’s how you can start analyzing shopping cart abandonment:

  • Compare data – did something in the past change and affect your cart abandonment rate for the better? For the worse? When did that happen? Did it coincide with a particular season or event? Search for patterns and try to recreate those that appear to have led to lower shopping cart abandonment.
  • Use heatmaps – heatmaps are a visual representation of where your website’s visitors click, how far they scroll, what they look at, or ignore. You can use heatmaps to determine what changes you should make in order to increase conversions and reduce shopping cart abandonment.
  • Research best practices – don’t try to reinvent the wheel! Do some digging to see how your competitors’ checkout processes look and perform. You can get inspiration for what to do (and what to avoid) in order to improve your cart abandonment rates.


Once you’ve gotten a firm grip on your shopping cart abandonment data, you can start using the insights you gain to develop cart abandonment solutions. Keep reading for tips and tricks to help prevent shopping cart abandonment!


prevent shopping cart abandonment



Ways to reduce cart abandonment

There are tons of ways that you can reduce shopping cart abandonment, so we’ve narrowed the list down to the top 6 cart abandonment solutions to keep things simple. Carefully consider which of the following strategies are easiest for you to start with today, and then you can gradually add other approaches to your broader plan to prevent shopping cart abandonment.


1. Simplify the checkout process

First and foremost, make the checkout process as short as possible. The more information you request and the more fields your customers need to fill, the longer it takes for them to complete the purchase, and the more opportunities they will have to become a part of your shopping cart abandonment stats.

Secondly, offer a variety of guest checkout options. Requiring customers to create an account before being able to make a purchase can help to generate returning customers, but it could also backfire and turn some people away from making their first buy. Give the option to ‘checkout as guest’ alongside a ‘create an account’ option.

Additionally, the more payment options your customers have (credit card, PayPal, Apple Pay, etc.), the lower the chances are that customers will abandon their carts because of a ‘complicated checkout process’. Try to find merchant service providers that can provide that sort of flexibility – it can go a long way to help your efforts to improve your business profits.


2. Use a progress bar on your checkout page

This cart abandonment solution is pretty easy to implement and the concept is really straightforward. One of the biggest reasons people turn to online shopping is because of the speed and convenience compared to shopping in person – if it takes too long to buy from your online store, your customers will not be happy.

Help your customers avoid that frustration by including a progress bar to indicate what step they’re on in the checkout process, and how many more steps they need to complete. You can get creative with the way you set up your checkout process and label the steps, there are no hard rules here. The bottom line is that when customers know how close they are to finalizing the purchase, that knowledge can help reduce cart abandonment.


3. Implement exit intent popups

Simply put, an exit intent popup is an alert that appears when a user makes an attempt to move away from the page they’re on  – the intent is to stop users from leaving the page. This is one of the best cart abandonment solutions you can put into action – it takes very little time to design and runs automatically around the clock. Plus you can do some A-B testing to see what sort of images, phrasing, or offers work best for your business.

Oftentimes e-commerce businesses may offer a discount in their exit intent popups, but that’s only one idea of many! Another way you can use exit intent popups is to have a quick sign-up form for users to create an account before they leave your website. Even if they continue to exit the page, if a user has already created an account then you’ll have the ability to reach out to them with cart abandonment emails that may also work to reduce cart abandonment (more on that below).


cart abandoned email


4. Invest in high-quality marketing

One of the biggest fumbles that can lead to online shopping cart abandonment is failing to invest enough in content. A successful marketing strategy relies on a number of different components – among them is the appeal to emotion. The benefits of making sure that your customers feel comfortable are huge. Hitting the right vibe to connect with your customers means they’ll be more likely to remember you and recommend your business to others.

Another essential aspect of your marketing strategy (in order to prevent shopping cart abandonment) is to use clear and powerful calls to action (CTAs) throughout your customer experience. Even after they’ve added items to their cart, customers often need a last push to make the commitment and finalize their purchase – the right CTA can do exactly that.

Side note: If you’re a Shopify seller and you’ve been looking for a way to discover which of your ad platforms is giving your store the best ROI, BeProfit – Profit Tracker is the Shopify calculator you need.

BeProfit is a cutting-edge Shopify profit calculator that gives you the power to track and monitor your store’s ad spend and profit margins with ease. The app gives you a full breakdown of all of your expenses, including marketing costs, so you can find out which ad platforms are most worth your money.

Optimize your profit with the BeProfit expense and profit margin calculator, here.


5. Optimize your cart abandonment email templates

Some may say that email marketing is a lost cause, but the fact is that the open rate for cart abandonment emails is more than 40%. Out of those customers who open their cart abandonment emails, more than 8% end up converting into sales. If you plan on reaching those impressive statistics then you’ll have to design cart abandonment email templates that capture the customer’s attention.

Successful cart abandonment email templates include:

  • Subject lines that convey an incentive for the customer to open
  • Your brand’s logo
  • A mix of heavy and light copy
  • A sense of urgency
  • Images of cart items
  • Product recommendations
  • Etc.


6. Offer additional incentives

Who doesn’t like free stuff? One of the easiest ways to prevent shopping cart abandonment is to offer extra goodies through your exit intent popups, cart abandonment emails, and any other medium of communication you have to reach your customers. Those goodies can include:

  • Limited time offers
  • Coupon codes
  • Free gifts with orders over certain sizes
  • Offer free shipping
  • Etc.


Wrapping it up

Now that you’ve gotten a complete rundown of what cart abandonment is, how to track it, and which solutions you can use to reduce cart abandonment, all you need to do is put these tips into action. The strategies mentioned here will help you strengthen your sales funnel and ultimately improve your bottom line. There’s no time to lose – get started with cart abandonment solutions today and watch your online business perform better than ever!

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Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is provided for informational purposes only, should not be construed as legal advice on any subject matter and should not be relied upon as such. The author accepts no responsibility for any consequences whatsoever arising from the use of such information.