When shoppers add products to their carts but don't buy anything, they are said to have abandoned their shopping carts.
Cart abandonment is calculated using the ratio of the number of customers who have checked out to the number of prospects who leave the site before finishing the online checkout process.
Many online shoppers do not confirm their carts when they first visit e-commerce sites: the internet has brought out new consumer behavior that explains this phenomenon (comparison of different offers for the same product from you, for example; the relative anonymity of navigation).
It is not unusual to see the cart abandonment rate greatly exceeding merchant expectations.
Hence they do everything they can to reduce these incomplete purchasing processes, and therefore increase sales.
Here are few things that need watching in particular:
- Keep the cart active until the customer next visits; the customer can then easily find the item selected, meaning he does not have to browse the whole site again.
- Pay attention to carriage costs: shoppers do not only look at the price of the product, but are interested in the total price of the order… making it all the more important to make shipping costs visible before checkout. This avoids unpleasant surprises for customers when they come to confirm their orders.
- Insofar as is possible, offer free shipping above a certain order value (and announce it on your site!).
- Gain shoppers' trust by highlighting your registration with the Data Protection Authority, tell them about secure payment by inserting security badges or padlock icons, and add a link on all pages to your exchanges and refunds policies.
- Clearly indicate how to contact customer service (telephone number, email address, contact form, chat, etc.) on every page of the site. An instant response is sometimes necessary to confirm the purchase. If you keep getting asked the same questions, think about creating an FAQ to provide answers even before shoppers can ask the question.
- Allow customers to leave product reviews: a product with a lot of positive reviews will help to increase customer confidence.
- Offering order tracking that enables customers to consult the various stages of their order (preparation, dispatch), and specify the exact day the package will arrive.
- Reduce the number of stages in the order process and clearly display the status.
- Simplify forms: tell the customer how to fill in the various fields (format to use for date of birth and telephone numbers, fields not common to all sites). Point out any errors when the customer fills out the form, but without requiring him to start from scratch.
- Avoid asking for the same information twice, such as the shipping address and the invoice address, but instead pre-fill the fields by default.
- Make it easy to reset login details or passwords in the event that the user forgets.
- Display previously viewed products or similar products on your site to increase the average cart value.