Ramp Up Revenues by Cutting Into Cart Abandonment — With These 9 Tips

According to an aggregation of studies on the topic, online shoppers leave items abandoned in their e-commerce shopping carts more than 70% of the time. And some of the top reasons given for cart abandonment include:

  • Excessive added costs like shipping, taxes and fees
  • A requirement for account creation before purchase
  • Inadequate delivery speeds
  • A lack of trust when providing payment information
  • A long and/or complicated checkout process

9 leading ways to combat cart abandonment

While these sizable abandonment rates lead to hundreds of billions of dollars in lost orders for U.S. e-commerce retailers each year, there is positive news to be found in the wake of the studies. According to researchers, most of the issues that lead to cart abandonment are solvable — and the average large-scale e-commerce site can increase its conversion rates by more than 35% by improving its checkout experience.

Is your e-commerce brand interested in learning how to reduce abandoned carts and how to convert abandoned carts to generate more online revenues? Read on for our nine top tips on turning those abandoned items in consumers’ online shopping carts into successful sales:

1. Choose a trust-inspiring e-commerce platform

Today’s consumers are increasingly discerning when it comes to online shopping, and a platform’s reliability and credibility can directly impact their purchasing decisions. A trustworthy e-commerce platform not only instills confidence in shoppers regarding the security of their transactions, but it also helps ensure a seamless and hassle-free shopping experience. From protection-packed payment gateways to secure data encryption, the assurance of a trustworthy platform helps mitigate concerns about fraud and privacy breaches, helping to reduce instances of cart abandonment. Further, to cater to the preferences of today’s multi-device consumers, it’s also key to employ a responsive e-commerce platform that is agile and adaptable across various devices and screen sizes.

2. Offer free (or reduced-rate) shipping

Shipping costs often act as a significant barrier to completing an online purchase, with many customers abandoning their carts upon encountering unexpected or exorbitant shipping fees during checkout. By providing free shipping or offering reduced-rate delivery options, businesses can eliminate or significantly minimize this friction point and incentivize online shoppers to follow through with their in-cart purchases. This strategy not only enhances the perceived value of the products being ordered, but it also aligns with the expectations set by the many major players in the modern e-commerce industry that offer free shipping with a membership fee (such as Amazon). Other players offer free shipping on orders over a certain amount (such as Target, Walmart and numerous other online retailers). Further, offering free and reduced-rate shipping can foster a sense of goodwill and customer satisfaction, both of which are crucial for cultivating lasting relationships and encouraging repeat purchases.

3. … and expedited delivery options

In the digital age, consumers have grown to crave instant gratification and expect swift delivery of their online purchases. And by offering expedited shipping choices, businesses can cater to this demand and effectively address one of the leading reasons for consumers’ cart abandonment — lengthy delivery times. This strategy not only helps accelerate the fulfillment process but also instills confidence in customers, assuring them that their orders will arrive promptly.

4. Make account creation optional

While user accounts can offer benefits such as order tracking and personalized recommendations, mandating their creation during checkout often introduces friction and deters potential customers from completing their purchases. By providing the option to proceed as a guest without compulsory account registration, brands can both streamline the checkout process and cater to the preferences of time-pressed or privacy-conscious shoppers. This approach reduces barriers to conversion and also cultivates a more inclusive and accommodating shopping environment, wherein customers feel empowered to transact without unnecessary hurdles. Further, by capturing essential information during the checkout process rather than via up-front account creation, businesses can still gather valuable data for future marketing efforts while prioritizing immediate conversion goals.

5. Cut the number of clicks needed to complete checkout

A streamlined and intuitive checkout experience helps ensure that prospective customers can quickly and easily complete their purchases without encountering unnecessary friction points. One of the most effective tactics in achieving this is through the implementation of one-click checkout options, which allow returning customers to finalize their transactions with a single click, bypassing the tedious steps of entering shipping and payment details repeatedly. This frictionless approach, facilitated by vendors such as Shop Pay, Google Pay and Apple Pay, expedites the checkout process and also reduces the likelihood of customers abandoning their carts due to frustration or impatience. Additionally, simplifying the overall checkout flow by minimizing form fields, providing clear and concise instructions, and offering guest checkout options further enhance the user experience and encourages seamless conversions.

6. Include in-cart imagery

Especially when shoppers’ carts are holding numerous items (or are so full that making unintended duplicate purchases may become a concern), providing in-cart thumbnail images/descriptions of the products being purchased can help reinforce product recognition and reassure customers about their order accuracy. And by providing such visual confirmation of selected items at each stage of the checkout process, brands can instill confidence and clarity during the final steps to conversion, helping mitigate any potential consumer doubts or uncertainties that may arise. Further, by acting as a visual reminder of the selections’ appeal, thumbnail images can help maintain customers’ engagement and motivation as they navigate through the last steps of completing their transactions.

7. Put plentiful payment options in place

When it comes to payment methods, today’s consumers have wide-ranging preferences and comfort levels — and providing a broad range of payment options helps brands ensure inclusivity and accommodate the diverse needs of shoppers. By offering popular payment methods such as credit/debit cards, digital wallets and bank transfers, along with alternative payment solutions like PayPal or Apple Pay, businesses empower customers to choose the payment method they are most comfortable and familiar with, thereby reducing the likelihood of abandonment due to payment friction.

8. Offer a reassuring returns policy

A transparent and customer-friendly returns policy helps instill confidence in online shoppers, addressing one of the primary concerns that can lead to cart abandonment — uncertainty about product satisfaction and the ease of any needed item returns. By clearly outlining the returns process, including information on return-shipping costs, replacement timelines and refund procedures, brands can demonstrate their commitment to customer satisfaction and mitigate perceived risks associated with online shopping. Further, a hassle-free returns policy can reassure customers that their needs and concerns are being prioritized, helping foster trust and loyalty in the brand. This proactive approach can reduce hesitancy during the checkout process and also encourage repeat purchases by creating a positive post-purchase consumer experience.

9. Implement and optimize cart-abandonment emails

Consider using cart-abandonment emails can serve as powerful tools for re-engaging with potential customers who have abandoned their carts before completing a purchase. By strategically crafting personalized and compelling emails that remind customers of the items left in their carts, brands can effectively recapture their interest and incentivize them to return and complete their transactions. Further, by offering incentives such as discounts, free shipping or limited-time offers, these emails can provide added value and encourage conversion. And with continuous optimization of their cart-abandonment email campaigns through A/B testing, customer-behavior analysis and messaging refinement, brands can ensure these emails achieve maximum effectiveness and ROI.

Brandon: Your e-commerce marketing experts

With a successful history of building transactional websites on some of the largest, most powerful e-commerce platforms available — along with vast experience reducing cart-abandonment rates for e-commerce clients — Brandon is a perfect fit for assisting with (or altogether handling) your brand’s e-commerce strategy, development and execution needs. We’ve worked with e-commerce clients ranging from apparel start-ups to enterprise-level stores — sometimes with hundreds of thousands of SKUs — and we can tailor high-performance solutions that are deeply integrated with your brand’s ERP and CRM systems. 

Further, as a fully integrated marketing firm, our team of certified brand strategists and data-driven marketing professionals can cover the full spectrum of your brand’s marketing needs. From e-commerce, influencer marketing, email marketing and SEO to social media, digital marketing, media, creative, analytics, public relations, brand strategy, web design and more, we can cover all your marketing needs in one place. To get started with help ranging from a simple website analysis to a comprehensive strategy tailored to boost the performance of all your marketing campaigns, contact us today.