A study conducted by Baymard Institute on cart abandonment that revealed that every 7 out of 10 customers make it to the cart in e-commerce stores and just leave from there. That is the average cart abandonment rate is around 70 percent! This habit of shoppers to add items to the cart or begin with a transaction but never complete the purchase is termed as cart abandonment.
Imagine this happening in real life: a customer goes to a store, puts all the things they like in a cart, and then goes to the counter. However, moments before the purchase, they decide to leave the cart abandoned in the store. Imagine the frustration of the store owner. As unlikely as this real-life scenario seems, this is what happens with carts in e-commerce websites.
Cart abandonment is one of the major causes of large-scale sales loss in an e-commerce store. Recovering the abandoned cart is, therefore, vital for boosting sales.
Check out our tutorial to know how to offer cart abandoned discounts for WooCommerce.
Reduce Cart Abandonment, Earn Sales
The abandonment of shopping carts is one of the most common problems faced by online stores. So why does this happen? Why do shoppers leave their cart in the middle of their purchase? Well, there could be a number of reasons. Here we will discuss them one by one and explore how we can increase the sales.
1. No More Hidden Costs
When a customer likes a product from your website and adds it to their cart, they have, of course, estimated the total cost along with the shipping price in their head according to what is basically is charged for the same. However, if it is only during the checkout process that they discover the additional costs, like tax and fees, it leaves a bad impression. The result is them leaving the cart and going looking for better options.
Be transparent about these costs in the cart. You can include a feature where shipping, tax, and fee calculations related to the items they select are visible in the cart or on the product page. It will make them aware of the amount to pay, and there will be no unwanted surprises.
Cutting out on those extra charges might help earn you more sales, especially if they are unwanted and not what most e-commerce stores charge.
Another very effective way to increase sales here is by enabling free shipping. “Free” is a pleasant word for consumers. You can offer free shipping for orders above a certain amount that will make customers add more items to purchase to take advantage of it.
2. Better and Accessible Return Policy
Customers often leave the cart to go back and find a return policy on your website. If they don’t find one or have trouble finding one, they would, of course, leave and prefer a different site they can trust.
The returning process is never too easy. But if you charge additional fees or give a short time frame to return the item, it will make it even more complicated. E-commerce customers hate complications.
It is better to give a quick mention of the return policy in the final steps to prevent customers from abandoning the cart to go search for it. It will boost customer confidence. The return policy should be easily accessible, on the product page itself. It must lay down all the terms and conditions so that the customers are well aware of what they are getting into before the purchase.
A clear return policy detailing all the steps customers have to follow, and an easy return process is enough to win their hearts and, thus, improving the sales.
3. Effective Customer Service
One of the main advantages of offline shopping is that there will be a salesperson who can tell you more about the product, and you can also try your product. But in online shopping, such options are unavailable.
Providing live chat support during the usual shopping hours is a good way to win the trust of customers. They may have many questions about the products. Provide prompt and clear responses to them, which would enable the customers to make their purchasing decisions. More sales for you!
Additionally, you could offer your customer the opportunity to schedule an appointment for a phone call, video chat, or screen-sharing session to answer questions or do a live demonstration, customized just for that customer. Customers will be impressed with your dedication to service and will be more likely to buy.
4. Detailed Product Information
Customers do a lot of research on the product before they decide to buy it. If your website does not include enough details about the product they are interested in, they are sure to trust one that has all the specifications.
Depending upon the product, it is important to provide a detailed description, which includes item specification, benefits, safety terms, instruction to use, ratings, and reviews. It makes your website look more professional and authentic, and customers will trust your products more.
The customers need a lot of convincing details to make up their minds. Visual content, such as high-quality images, videos, and interactive material, plays a significant role here. Remember that they are most likely comparing the products on your store with others. Give them what they want and earn those sales!
5. Mobile-Friendly Website
Many prefer mobile phones over desktop today. Most of the decision making and purchasing is done on mobile websites. If your website, especially your cart, is not mobile optimized, the chances of customers abandoning your site are more.
When you are designing the website for your e-commerce store, make sure it has a responsive web design. Responsive web design is where the site fits the screen size of any device the user is browsing it on. The experience of such a website should not be affected by the change in screen size.
Better user experience will improve the chances of completed purchases.
6. Faster and Easy Checkout Process
A lengthy checkout process to fill out long forms is what irritates most customers. Such a checkout process turns away even the most potential customers. It would be wise to optimize the checkout process, which will make customers complete their orders.
Build a seamless, simple and effortless, and, if possible, a one-page checkout form, removing all unnecessary fields. Also, a progress bar can be added to inform the customers about how much they have completed.
The faster the checkout, the higher the purchase rate.
7. Well-Timed Cart Abandonment Emails
Customers might add items to the cart and drift away to some other website, completely forgetting about the cart on your website. Sometimes the customers leave the cart because they are not ready to buy at that time.
Well-timed reminder emails with offers and discounts on the added items (if possible) might tempt them to go back and complete the purchase.
Another method that works is creating urgency. Sending personalized emails to the customers, convincing them that the items in the cart could become unavailable soon, or the ongoing offer/discount will expire quickly might pull them back to the store.
The below plugins help in sending out abandoned cart emails (or messages) for your store.
- Smart Coupons for WooCommerce (Premium)
- Abandoned Cart Lite for WooCommerce (Free)
- Yith WooCommerce Recover Abandoned Cart (Premium)
- CartBack (Premium)
8. More Payment Gateways
Many customers leave their cart when they don’t find their preferred payment method on the website. Not everyone will prefer the same payment method. Losing customers because of inadequate payment methods will be a disappointment considering how close you were to get those sales.
Websites should opt for multiple payment methods and give shoppers good alternatives.
Here are two payment gateway plugins by WebToffee (for WooCommerce):
9. Thumbnail Images and Number of Items in the Cart
Sometimes in shopping sprees or hopping between other stores, shoppers forget what they were shopping for.
In an actual store, you can see how many items there in your cart are and what you are buying or missing out. However, in an online store, that is not the case.
Add thumbnail images and the number of items in the cart during the checkout. By including pictures and numbers, you are potentially avoiding the hesitation and distraction a customer might experience when they don’t remember exactly what or how much they added to the cart.
A visible cart is also beneficial when the customers save the items for later. When they come back, they could simply go to the cart and complete the purchase.
10. Easier Navigation Between Cart and Store
No doubt, the users will prefer the ease of movement within the website. The shoppers will like a real-life store experience in online shops, where they can easily go back to shopping to place back or add on more items from or to the cart.
No one likes to browse through pages after pages just to buy or find a product. It makes customers lose interest, and they would instead go to other stores that may require fewer clicks to checkout. Strictly avoid making your web design complicated to navigate through.
A simple navigation structure will solve this issue. Make the customers’ journey to the checkout easy.
11. Coupons and Discount Offers
Customers often feel reluctant to buy products because of high prices. They are constantly looking for stores that offer better deals. If you fail to meet the expectations, you are losing out on sales.
Who doesn’t love freebies?
Give discount offers before the checkout or offer free coupons if their total price of the cart exceeds a particular amount. This could highly boost the sales rate.
The customers are less likely to abandon a cart when they get such special deals.
12. Faster Loading of Pages
The slower your website is, the more impatient the customers will grow, and the more carts they will abandon.
Reducing the use of network trackers, social media plugins, etc. will help boost your load time. Also, optimizing the images of your website to make a perfect balance between the speed and the quality is important.
Faster loading of pages will enable a smooth and less complicated buying experience.
13. Guest Checkout Option
You want to buy a product from an e-commerce store that you visited for the first time. You are almost in the finishing line of the purchase. However, you learn that to complete the purchase, you need to create an account. That requires you to verify your credentials; otherwise, you will not be able to buy it. A bit annoying, right?
If your customers face the same problem, they will leave the cart as it slows down the whole process.
Enable guest checkout and just ask them for an email address. You can request them to create an account after they have placed the order. If their experience with the store is good, they will most likely end up signing up and prefer your site for future purchases.
14. Secure Payment
The Internet is just as much like a bane as it is a boon. With increasing cases of fraudulent transactions and digital thefts, people are concerned about spending money online.
Get security badges and SSL certificates for your online store. They are trust seals to convince the customers to trust the site with their payment credentials. This way you can ease their fear and earn their trust.
The more secure they feel, the more confident they will be to spend their money.
These were some of the techniques to earn more sales by reducing cart abandonment. Hope these tips will make the customers stay on your site and complete the purchase.
Let us know in the comment section below if and how you are dealing with cart abandonment in your store. Also, let us know if you think there are other ways to reduce cart abandonment and give a boost to sales.