Turning Shopping Cart Abandonment To Your Advantage

The stats currently show that 75 percent of online shoppers are abandoning their shopping carts, raising questions about the digital barriers that retailers place for their customers.

Over complicating a customer’s journey to purchase is one of the main reasons people abandon online shopping carts.  If you make the checkout process too complex with multiple questions and repetitive tasks, you create a barrier to smooth conversions.

So what does an online retailer need to do to keep things simple and turn cart abandonment around to their advantage?  Leonardo Da Vinci had the answer: “simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.”

Find the Key Moments for Customers

Online retailers need to focus on the key moments that will inspire people to buy from them and offer them compelling reasons to encourage them back to buy.  These online window shoppers will have given a clear indication of the items they’re interested in with search data, and with that you have an opportunity to identify the key moments for each customer to trigger an email to entice them back to make a purchase.

To make this happen, retailers will need to have collected an email address either through a competition or registering for a special discount. Then, by using the right technology to match website activity with their email address, you should choose the right message and personalise it as much as you want.

Reconnect, Remind and Recommend

Emails are a very simple way for online stores to reconnect with recent website visitors who left without placing any items in their cart. Sending a reconnecting email referencing a list of products from the customer’s browse history, and making recommendations to reignite their interest or suggest alternatives, may often tempt them back to your online store to buy.

OakleyReebokHertz and Tommy Hilfiger  are just some of the brands who have successfully adopted browse emails as part of their online sales strategies.

Oakley’s experience is particularly interesting, with a dual objective of curbing cart abandonment and increasing the size of its database, with customer acquisition and retention a vital part of its online strategy.  Instead of an ordinary campaign, a multi-touch approach was devised using an on-site remarketing message, prompting the customer for their email address once they’re further into their buying journey. Oakley then used a multi-cycle email campaign, tempting those who had abandoned their cart to return and complete their purchase.  Oakley’s use of cart abandonment emails have achieved an exceptional open rate of 56 percent and have resulted in an average order value which is 58 percent higher than direct sales. As an added bonus, they also increased their database with a 66 percent increase in email acquisition.

shopping cart abandonment oakley


Why Did They Abandon?

Identifying and understanding the issues and trends behind why customers are abandoning an online store before purchase is critical. What better way for a retailer to learn where they can improve than by asking the people who wanted to buy from them, but ended up walking away?

With 80 percent of abandoners on a website being anonymous, retailers should consider displaying a message asking them for quick feedback at the point the visitor is about to leave the site without completing the purchase.  For the 20 percent of abandoners whose email details have been captured, send a survey at a later time. The more you can learn about why people are leaving before a purchase, the better position you’ll be in to influence future buying behaviour.

Perhaps you’ll learn that your potential customers would prefer to pay in installments, to use a different payment method, of if they were simply shopping around. Gathering information is the first step towards improving your online retail experience.

With this in mind, make Da Vinci proud by tailoring and improving your online and mobile sites to enhance the user experience and customer purchase journey, which will lead to higher conversion rates, increased sales and improved revenue.


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