How to Deal with Abandoned Shopping Carts

If your business is in e-commerce, then you know one of the most significant issues you face is abandoned shopping carts. If you are new to e-commerce, a shopping cart is just a list of items the customer plans to purchase at checkout. It acts as a virtual shopping cart. How do you deal with an order that a customer was committed enough to take it right up to check out but did not finish the transaction? With that question in mind, here are some tips on how to deal with abandoned shopping carts.

Be Up Front

According to Optimonster, the number one reason that customers abandoned shopping carts is unexpected costs. Those costs can be things such as taxes, handling fees, and shipping costs. How do you deal with this issue that is such a deterrent to customers? There is a  way to make additional charges apparent before checkout.  Add a button to a product page that calculates the extra costs. That means that a customer gets the actual price of the purchase. E-commerce sites like Shopify have themes with shipping cost calculators. If you are using WooCommerce, there are a number of plugins that calculate shipping costs.

Be Our Guest

If you want to drive away traffic from your e-commerce store, here is how. Force potential customers to register with your site to checkout. Customers expect to have to fill out payment and shipping information. Customers do not expect to have to go through a lengthy process before they can complete their checkout. You can count on a majority of customers bouncing before a purchase is made. If your website requires registration before a purchase, you are losing thousands of dollars on annoyed customers. How do you rectify this problem? Offer a guest checkout where only the payment information and shipping content are required. Then offer to use the information to register after they have checked out. WooCommerce makes it easy to add guest checkouts. All you have to do is turn the option on for it to work.

Hey, Before You Go…

People may abandoned their shopping carts for any number of reasons, perhaps they burned a roast in the oven and had to run for a fire extinguisher, or their one-year-old was trying to swallow their keys. In many cases carts are abandoned not due to a sudden lack of desire in your products, but because life occurred. A useful tool in bringing people back to their shopping cart after they abandoned it is by using an exit-intent popup. This popup requests the user’s name and email address. You can use the information to send reminder emails, and in addition, you can offer a discount code for them to use if thy return, which incentivizes returning to complete their purchase.

It’s Iconic

Another simple but effective way to drive a customer to complete their purchase is by simply keeping a shopping cart icon at the top of the screen listing how many items are in their cart. Each time a customer visits your site, they will be reminded of the purchase they abandoned. WooCommerce offers a plugin to show the cart icon, but if you are not using WooCommerce, you can discuss adding the icon with your web design agency.

Don’t Drag it Out

Again, a simple but obvious aid to customers completing purchases is to streamline the checkout process. If the checkout process is tedious and slow, the majority of checkouts will not be completed. Only ask for the bare minimum to complete a transaction in your checkouts, and you will see your conversions increase. Following these common-sense suggestions will bring about a decrease in the number of abandoned shopping carts you see.

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About the Author

Though his chief ambition is to one day control the entire Internet, Jim busies himself in the meantime running our little web development and marketing agency. He's a certified super nerd who ranks coding in old, outdated languages and watching Star Trek reruns just a bit too high on his list of fun things to do. Outside of work, Jim enjoys Hockey (Tampa Bay Lighning, to be specific), more genres of music than most people realize exist, riding his Harley (he calls it "two wheel therapy") and exploring the world through travel.