Cart abandonment! It’s every e-commerce store’s nightmare. Unfortunately, hellish as it seems, it’s also unavoidable. In fact, it’s a part of the sales cycle.
A big part too as research has shown that on average, 68% of filled carts are abandoned at check out. This means for every $100 of “ready money”, most online stores get $32. This number is steadily increasing.
According to Listrack, a shopping cart abandonment monitor, the 6-month average abandonment rate at the time of writing this article was a whopping 77%!
Frustrating? That’s an understatement. Especially after all the hard work of creating your sales funnel, watching the prospect flow through it and only to have them drop off at the finish line.
Despite these disheartening cart abandonment statistics, you can improve yours.
Maintain Your Funnel
Your sales funnel is the whole process you take to make a sale. From the landing page to the cart page, the entire system has to be a well-oiled machine. Due to the complexity of the sales funnel and cycle, I will only highlight a few of the major pitfalls you need to take care of. Here’s a simple checklist to get you started.
- Check for leaks in the sales funnel
- Minimize friction/Reduce inhibitions
- Ensure website navigation provides a good UX
- Split Test to see which pages convert better. Especially for single or multi-page checkout, test which works best for you.
Now that you have ensured that your funnel is as tight as an oyster, let’s look at 7 strategies that can help you improve your cart abandonment rates.
#1 Be Open/Upfront About All Expenses
No one likes to be unpleasantly surprised. This is the feeling most shoppers get when they are presented with unexpected costs at the checkout page.
They will drop your cart like a hot potato.
Just take a look at the image below. Unexpected costs are the biggest contributor to cart abandonment.
Source: Business Insider
Research by Statista has shown that 56% of shoppers abandon their carts due to “unexpected costs”. The flip side of the same research implies that displaying all your costs upfront actually reduces cart abandonment.
People want value, trust, and honesty.
Surprising a customer with extra charges at the end of the sales process indicates dishonesty. They won’t know if they are to expect some other nasty surprises from you in the future or not.
Openness with all your charges is the simplest way of improving your cart abandonment rates. Revisit your pricing and make amendments.
- Show all costs on the product page. Include the full breakdown where necessary.
- As much as possible, include any service charges the payment processor may charge. For example, PayPal charges a $2 processing fee. Let that be one of the expenses you include when determining the price of your product.
#2 Have A Guest Check Out Function
Not all who purchase from your site are willing to be regular fans. Some just come because of a good deal you are offering or a specific product. Registering will become a big deterrent for this type of customer. Because they don’t really know you, they may not feel comfortable giving you their details.
This is where the guest function comes in handy.It, in fact, is the perfect way to kill two birds with one stone.
Bird number 1: It helps you make a sale.
Bird number 2: It provides you an opportunity to earn the customer’s trust.
From the onset of the customer journey, give your prospect the option to register or to continue as a guest. The ideal would be to have the options on the same page. A good example is the Walmart screenshot below.
Not having a guest check out is a sure recipe for high cart abandonment rates. Set up your store in a guest friendly way. Give guests an experience that will force them to be regulars.
For those who opt to checkout as a guest, make a provision for them to register after they have made the purchase. A simple ask is all it takes. Since billing (and shipping in some cases) information would already have been filled in, ask the customer if you can save their details for future convenience. The only step they will need to take will be to create a password.
- Don’t force customers to register before checking out. It increases the friction between you and the prospect.
- Politely ask to save customer details at the end of the transaction. Make it about the customer’s convenience, not yours.
#3 Guarantee Security
In this age of cyber insecurity, online shoppers need to know that your site is secure. They need to know that their information is safe with you. The best way to do this is to get the best internet security solution on your site and display the badges of your security provider on your site. Especially on the checkout page.
Security is a big issue, especially for first-time visitors. When they see proven and trusted “safe” signs in the form of security badges, they become more confident to share their information with you. Making a sale becomes easier. The bigger the security brand, the more confidence your site will gain from prospects.
Displaying these security seals does more than add color to your site. These seals prove to the customer that you take security and their privacy seriously.
The easiest way to include a site seal on your store is by displaying the seal in the footer of your website. Simply copy the java script code provided by your security provider into a text widget in your footer. This will display the security seal on every page of your site.