by Sarah Mo ZhenApproximate read time: 7 minutes
One of the most important aspects of shopping online is the checkout process. Many retailers have trouble with this portion, leading to shopping cart abandonment. Shopping cart abandonment occurs when potential customers add items onto their shopping cart without fully completing their purchase. If it was not obvious, the direct negative effects of cart abandonment
for businesses is revenue loss
In 2019, the average global shopping cart abandonment rate was 77.13%
. This means that approximately only 2 out of 10 customers would fully complete a purchase. Reducing shopping cart abandonments is the holy grail all e-commerce merchants strive for. If you aren't already working towards this, you should be! Here are some suggestions on how you can proactively reduce shopping cart abandonment.
1. Provide transparency
"I like hidden fees..." said no one ever! Hidden fees and policies are unfavorable for everyone. Not to mention, they are scammy (with all due respect). Make sure your business provides full disclosure of its return policies, shipping expenses and additional costs. When customers find additional unexpected fees, they are more likely to abandon their purchase. Transparency helps build trust and customer loyalty.
2. Allow checking out as a guest
Some businesses require creating an account before being allowed to checkout. While this may provide valuable insights to your marketing and strategy teams about customer behavior and trends, customers may not appreciate the added hurdle. There are commitments and longer processes involved, which may really test the shopper's affinity towards your store. There is a high chance this will lead to heartbreak for you. Leave out the heavy commitments to the user's discretion, and only if they choose to.
3. Build trust
Most customers do not feel comfortable providing their credit card information to unfamiliar websites. A solution for this is to integrate trusted payment options from credible companies such as Paypal or clearly specifying your payment method is Verified by Visa. Also point out that your domain and SSL certificates are verified by reputable companies such as Norton Security or VeriSign. Credible security adds a layer of trust to customers' checkout experience.
4. Make it simple
Shoppers do not have the patience to solve a puzzle while trying to pay for products. It is up to store admins to make this process easier for potential customers by using straightforward and shorter checkout flows. In short, when the checkout process is complex, you are helping your competitors.
5. Avoid technical problems
Timeouts, website crashes and sluggishness are inevitable but not beyond your control. Each business should try their best to avoid technical problems. Be on the lookout for bug reports and ways to improve user experience for customers. Run test drives on your website by making a purchase from your own stores using all major browsers, Chrome, Firefox, Safari and maybe even Internet Explorer (yes people still use IE).
6. Offer affordable shipping costs
Customers are more likely to complete a purchase if shipping costs are free. Amazon and and big box stores have set forward an unprecedented expectation amongst buyers that shipping can (or should) be free. Most small and medium businesses simply do not have the economies of scale to afford this. We suggest adding discounts or cheaper delivery options after a certain order value. 93%
of online shoppers feel an incentive to shop when free delivery options are available, while 58% are likely to purchase additional items to reach a total amount to qualify for free shipping.
7. Incorporate A/B testing A/B testing
compares two websites or application versions to find out which one provides the best outcomes. Experiment with layouts, checkout sequences, color scheme or even something as simple as button positioning to help you figure out what increase checkouts.Optimizing websites will help decrease cart abandonments. As we say here at BoffinAI, "let the data guide you".
Shopping cart abandonment hurt businesses and SMBs are more susceptible to it. Although it is unavoidable, there are steps you can take proactively to mitigate it. You may even gain valuable insights about your site in the process of trying to reduce cart abandonments and help your bottom line revenue.