06 February 2020

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The 5 Most Common Reasons for Shopping Cart Abandonment

eCommerce cart abandonment refers to customers adding products to their cart but then leaving the site before completing the purchase.

Whilst it can be difficult to pinpoint exact explanations behind last-minute cart abandonment, research has revealed some common trends which businesses can take on board in order to optimise their eCommerce site and avoid the loss of sales.

Here are 5 of the common reasons behind cart abandonment and some handy suggestions to help minimise the chances of losing customers at the final hurdle.



If a checkout process is too long or complex, customers are likely to abort mission and look elsewhere as they do not have the time or attention span to fill in lengthy forms. By reducing the number of form elements and ensuring important CTA’s are clearly visible, you can streamline the checkout flow and reduce the loss of sales. You are much more likely to entice people to complete the checkout process and therefore make the purchase.


Merchant Payment Option Is Not User Friendly

Online shoppers often have strong preferences on how they wish to pay for their orders and if your site does not match this, you can easily lose sales. eCommerce sites are therefore much more likely to retain customers at the final hurdle by offering a range of payment methods – particularly those which avoid the hassle of manually entering in details. Apple Pay, PayPal and Google Wallet are just a few examples of third-party payment gateways which allow customers to use pre-set up accounts that automatically populate payment fields. Shoppers experience a smoother payment process and are more likely to complete purchases.


Hidden Shipping Costs

Hidden shipping costs are a common contributor to cart abandonment, particularly for customers who do not purchase multiple products. By not informing customers of shipping costs until the checkout phase; you are at risk of them sourcing the product on an alternative site which offers cheaper or even free shipping. The best way around this is to be upfront and clearly communicate shipping costs to your customers from the outset. Another useful strategy is to bundle the extra delivery cost in with the product price and then advertise the shipping cost as “free” to the customer.


No Guest Checkout Option

The annoyance of mandatory account creation at checkout is a popular reason for cart abandonment. By not offering a guest checkout option, you are asking every new customer to spare 2 to 3 minutes for account creation before they can complete their purchase. Whilst this may not sound like long, when it comes to consumer habits and expectations – it is! And it can cost you a sale. The ideal solution is to offer the option for account creation whilst also providing a guest checkout option. Customers are more likely to complete their purchase and you may even get a bonus new account sign up on the side too.


Not Ready To Buy

Some shoppers are not actually looking to make purchases, rather they are browsing websites and adding items to a cart just to find out a total price, create a wish-list or window shop etc. It is common for these kinds of shoppers to ditch their cart before they even reach the checkout phase. These shoppers are difficult to pin down and convert to paying customers, however tactics such as pop up promotions and offers that only apply to that specific day can be useful incentives to sway people into purchasing.


These small changes could greatly reduce the number of abandoned carts you experience. It’s highly unlikely businesses will ever be able to completely avoid cart abandonment, but the suggestions above are a great starting point in helping to win customers back.


If you would like more information on how to improve your sales within your ecommerce business, marketing agency 5874 can offer support, content creation and web design and development. Get in touch today.




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