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Why your Customers are Abandoning Your Shopping Cart

Shopping cart abandonment simply refers to customers leaving a shopping cart before they finalize the checkout process. While some shopping cart dropouts simply change their mind or get distracted, many would remain if website owners paid attention to a few basic principles.

Shipping – According to Forrester Research, studies show that shipping costs represent the main reason users abandon shopping carts.

  • Ecommerce retailers will often raise their shipping prices to compensate for their competitive product prices; however, shipping costs are weighed heavily in an online shopper’s decision. Shoppers often compare the online shopping experience to offline and shipping is an extra expense with which they are often not comfortable. What to do? At a minimum, make sure your shipping is in line with your competitors. If your competitors are offering free shipping, it may be in your best interest to do the same. Free shipping is often more desirable to online shoppers than product discounts.
  • Missing shipping costs – Your customers should be able to calculate estimated shipping costs as early as possible in the checkout process. Shoppers are eager to know the total cost (including shipping) before they pull out their credit cards. If they don’t get this information, they can easily visit the next website. Do not give them a reason to abandon your cart.

Guest Checkout – Do you require customers to register before they purchase? If so, you may be losing customers. Speed is the name of the game when it comes to online shopping and many buyers do not want to take the time to register their email and password regardless of the benefits.

Already using guest checkout? To increase conversions, position it on the left side of the page so customers see it. Test its placement on the page and determine which one converts the best. Though you may want your customers to register, consider their needs first and you may see a boost in sales. If the customer is happy with the purchase, a repeat sale may prompt them to register anyways.

Security logo placement – Most Ecommerce business owners already realize the importance of displaying SSL certificates and security badges on their sites. However, the proper placement can make a difference. Tucking them away in the corner or in the footer of the site is a good practice, but not entirely effective. Add security symbols next to the credit card field as well during checkout to ease any fears or doubts at this crucial stage of the buying process.

Cart Button – Contrary to what many people think, button size and design plays a major role in conversions. Newegg.com increased their revenue 30% yearly by making a few tweaks to their website, including the design of their cart button. An incorrectly placed or blended cart button can confuse shoppers and send them running in frustration. Make it easy for people to purchase. The cart button should be big and bold and displayed in exciting colors. Your checkout button should also follow suit.

If you are unsure how any of these or other elements will increase or decrease your conversions, split test the additions. Split testing is the easiest method to determining what works for your customers.

If you have any other suggestions on what causes shoppers to abandon shopping carts, please let us know in the comments below.

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