Abandoned carts are an important piece of the puzzle when uderstanding the customer journey in any online store or eCommerce business. It is an critical aspect in understanding how a customer goes from cold traffic (not knowing what the brand/product is) to brand champions & promoters.
At Toth Media, we view a basic customer pathway going something along the lines of:
1. Cold traffic
2. Engagement with a post or ad / web page view
3. View product page
4. Add to cart
In this article, we will cover why the Abandoned Cart stage is important to investigate & provide 4 common issues that can prevent customers from completing their purchase .
Why Are Abandoned Carts Important?
Understanding why you are receiving a higher than average abandoned cart rate is important because it is the largest decision point in the consumer journey. It is the main hurdle before the completion of a purchase.
By addressing problems in your online experience, you will be able to increase your conversions. Sometimes there are simple fixes to problems, others times it takes some elbow grease to resolve an issue with your eCommerce store.
Now without further adieu, the potential reasons for your abandoned carts.
#1 High Shipping Costs
With the popularity of online shopping in 2020, especially Amazon, there has been a standard of free (or very cheap) shipping. As consumers become more and more accustomed to Amazon Prime’s frequent 2-day free shipping, shipping costs become more of a pain point to all ranges of consumers.
We have seen consumers be hesitant to place large orders (think in the thousands) if they have to pay for the shipping. It is a psychological barrier that is forming for online shopping. Evaluate your shipping cost & be transparent about it as well.
If possible, we recommend trying to roll some shipping cost into your pricing. At the very least, try subsidizing your shipping cost.
Rule of thumb, free shipping is king in eCommerce. To learn more about shipping for your online store, Shippo has a wonderful guide they wrote a few years ago. You can read it here.
#2 Setup Errors & Website Issues
This is a simple step, but an important one. There may be multiple technical issues with your online store that are causing an increase in abandoned carts.
We have seen this take shape in a multitude of different forms. Firstly, ensure your shipping rates & zones are set up correctly. Make sure there are no conflicts as it can create problems with potential customers not able to select the correct shipping option. A thorough audit of your website experience is always a good idea.
In addition, the speed of your website is important. The slower your website is (especially at checkout) the more likely you are to see an increase in bounce rates & abandoned carts. For a guide on eCommerce site speed, Shopify has a great resource. You can read it here.
#3 Complex Checkout or No Guest Checkout
Another issue that we observe frequently is that our clients prefer to force customers to register for an account to be able to make a purchase. We understand that store owners want to collect as much info as possible by having customers register for an account, but in many cases this can annoy impatient consumers and cause them to abandon their cart.
It’s a double whammy here. First, they do not want to sign up for an account to be able to view or purchase product. Second, even if they do sign up for an account, most of the time customers do not want you to contact them about not completing their purchase.
Lastly, people are creatures of habit & enjoy structure. If your checkout process is not of the traditional variety that consumers are used to, you will find there is most likely a drop off in your conversion percentage. Anytime you add an additional step in your checkout process, there is a chance for confusion, annoyance, or frustration.
Always, always, always, ensure your checkout process is as easy as possible. We suggest making changes to your online store/eCommerce model if you currently have those extra steps or a longer checkout experience in general.
#4 High Product Price
Lastly, a simple but often overlooked aspect for abandoned carts in 2020 is your price point of your product.
Many consumers ultimately do not pull the trigger for this reason alone. However, you need to know your product, your cost of goods sold, your margins, etc. to ensure you are priced correctly. Ultimately you need to keep your margins healthy for a profitable business.
We recommend deep diving into both your purchasers & abandoned carts to truly understand what is preventing potential customers from completing their purchase. You can do this with follow up email sequences or good-old fashioned cold emails/phone calls.
If you need help for with your online store or eCommerce business, don’t hesitate to give us an email or phone call, we are always open to having a quick chat to point you in the right direction.