You’ve optimised your e-commerce website through SEO and various campaigns (PPC, Social, etc.) to drive targeted, quality traffic to your online shop. That’s only half the job. Now that the customer is on your site you need to get them to purchase your products.
We know that of the visitors that arrive on your site, some are random, some are window shopping and some will never buy. However, those people that add products to their cart and reach the checkout page, are motivated and more than likely have the intention to complete the purchase.
Shopping cart abandonment is when shoppers put items into their online shopping carts, but then leave the website before completing the purchase. This has a negative impact on e-commerce online shops and it’s worrying to think that the prospective customer has gone all the way to the shopping cart, only for you to lose out on the sale.
SOLUTIONS TO CART ABANDONMENT
The good news is there are proven techniques to reduce your abandonment rates, without having to totally redesign or redevelop your e-commerce store.
KEEP THE CART VISABLE
Displaying the cart in the primary navigation is a constant reminder to the customer that they have items in their cart. Otherwise, it is a case of out of sight out of mind.
Some cart icons even display the number of items in the cart, so that the customer is reminded quickly that they haven’t completed their purchase.
Below is an example of what Amazon’s cart icon looks like.
OFFER GUEST CHECKOUT
It is not advisable to force customers to create an account before checking out of the cart. Not only does this require more effort and slow down the process, but most customers will actually be put off and leave the website.
Inserting personal information, confirming an email address, and then returning to the shopping cart is asking a lot from the customer, who in all likelihood has other online websites to choose from.
This can be overcome by enabling a guest checkout. You can always ask them to create an account once they’ve already made their purchase.
SHOW SECURITY LOGOS
When customers shop from an e-commerce shop–particularly one they’ve never encountered before, they want to know that they can trust the online shop with their information.
By asking your customers to fill out a checkout form, you’re asking them to trust you with their personal and credit card details, something many people are (understandably) hesitant to part with.
Including security badges and logos is proven to help instil confidence, and reduce cart abandonment.
OPTIMISE YOUR PAGE SPEED
People today are shopping from various devices from desktops, laptops, tablets and mobile phones. With customers being able to browse and shop at the click of a button, patience is not one of their strong points.
Checkout pages that are slow to load will definitely result in people abandoning the shopping cart. So optimise your checkout page to be as fast as possible.
External factors such as payment gateway integrations or shipping/courier services can also provide a delay, in which case, clever use of loading bars or progress indicators lets the customer know that their transaction is in progress and will be completed shortly.
ENSURE THE CHECKOUT FORM IS QUICK AND EASY TO USE
In this day and age people transacting online are lazy and impatient. They want to transact with as fewer clicks and the least amount of steps and effort as possible.
The checkout form is essentially where the customer will be inputting their personal, contact and credit card information. Avoid including fields that are not necessary for the user to complete. Every additional field the user needs to complete the more resistant they are of concluding the purchase.
Obviously, you will need to capture certain information however you need to find the balance between what is essential and what is unnecessary.
END OF PART 1
This concludes the end of the first article in this three-part series. Stay tuned to our BLOG for the next two articles.