How to Keep Online Shoppers fromAbandoning Their Cart

Last Updated: Aug 14, 2012
Are your online customers abandoning their online shopping cart before they complete their purchase? If so, you’re not alone. Here are several things you can do to reduce lost sales.

Shopping cartAre your online customers abandoning their online shopping cart before they complete their purchase? If so, you’re not alone. Abandoned shopping carts are a common problem. According to a 2012 Baymard Institute report, the average reported shopping cart abandonment rate is 65.95%. That means that if your site is typical, almost two thirds of the customers who start to place an order on your site may be leaving before completing their purchase.

The reasons consumers and businesses buyers abandon shopping carts are varied.  High shipping costs and comparison shopping are two common reasons.  In B2B sales, the person who initially looks for a product and puts it in a cart may be researching the cost and other details for their boss.

Other reasons for shopping cart abandonment include the buyer’s desire to find more information about a product or to read reviews; a last minute decision to search for coupons; or the site “timing out” (forgetting what was entered in the shopping cart) because the shopper had to answer a phone or got interrupted in some other way.   Shopping carts that force a shopper to register before allowing them to make a purchase, or that are set up in such a way to make it difficult to see what you’ve put in the cart or find the “checkout” button, will also cause online shoppers to leave without completing their purchase. 

Although some of the factors that cause shoppers to leave your site without completing a purchase are beyond your control, there are a number of steps you can take to lower your shopping cart abandonment rate.  Here are several to consider 


One other tool you should have in your arsenal to save the sale is a newsletter or other way of getting customers to identify themselves and leave contact information so you can follow up with them in the future. The person who leaves your shopping cart today because they are just starting to research their purchase, may be ready to buy tomorrow or next week. An email offering them a discount or other incentive to buy may be all it takes to get the prospect to buy from you.

 Copyright © 2012 Attard Communications, Inc.

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About the author:
Janet Attard is the founder of the award-winning  Business Know-How small business web site and information resource. Janet is also the author of The Home Office And Small Business Answer Book and of Business Know-How: An Operational Guide For Home-Based and Micro-Sized Businesses with Limited Budgets.  Follow Janet on Twitter and on LinkedIn


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