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6 Proven Tips to Reduce Cart Abandonment
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6 Proven Tips to Reduce Cart Abandonment

Colin Marsh
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It's no secret that online cart abandonment rates are high.

As per Statista's 2021 data, the average retail cart abandonment rate reached a staggering 71%. In simpler terms, for every 100 visitors who load their carts with products, merely 29 proceed to complete their purchase.

That's a lot of potential sales left on the table.

Now, you might be wondering, what can retailers and eCommerce marketers do to combat these daunting cart abandonment rates? In this blog post, we'll unveil expert strategies to address this challenge head-on.

How to Calculate Shopping Cart Abandonment Rate

Calculating your cart abandonment rate is essential for understanding how well your online store is performing. Fortunately, it's a relatively simple process.

First, you need to track how many people start the checkout process on your website. This can be done through website analytics tools like Google Analytics. Second, you need to track how many people complete the checkout process. This can be done by tracking completed orders in your eCommerce platform. Finally, you need to divide the number of abandoned carts by the total number of started carts.

For example, if you had 500 abandoned carts and 500 total checkouts, your cart abandonment rate would be 50%. And if you want to make these numbers even more tangible, let's say that your average order value is €100. In this case, you're losing €50,000 per month because of cart abandonment.

Although a cart abandonment rate exceeding 50% might sound alarming, it's surprisingly common. In reality, the average cart abandonment rate across all industries stands at a whopping 70%.

So, what can you do to reduce your cart abandonment rate?

Six Effective Techniques to Lower Cart Abandonment

Create a Simple & Easy Checkout Process

Any business owner knows that one of the most important aspects of running a successful online store is having a streamlined checkout process. A simple, easy-to-use checkout can reduce cart abandonment rates and increase conversion rates.

Here are a few tips for creating a successful checkout process:

  • Allow guest checkout — according to Salescycle, 34% of shoppers abandon the checkout process when forced to create an account.
  • Keep it simple — the fewer steps there are in the process, the better. Too many fields or required information can be off-putting to customers and lead them to abandon their purchase. In fact, some case studies show that offering a one-click checkout process can boost conversions by more than 20%. Here’s an example of Euronics using express checkout to optimise their cart conversion rate.
An example of Eurnoics using express checkout to optimise cart conversion rate
  • Optimise for mobile — with more and more people shopping on their mobile devices, it’s essential to have a mobile-friendly checkout process.
  • Use trust signals — displaying security logos or seals can help reassure customers that their personal and financial information is safe. Check out this example of Kitlocker using a security seal to make the checkout process seamless.
Example of Kitlocker using a security seal to reduce cart abandonment rate

By following these tips, you'll create a successful checkout process that will keep customers coming back for more.

Offer Multiple Shipping Options

Failure to provide diverse shipping options for your customers may result in missed sales opportunities. Relying solely on a single shipping method can inconvenience your customers by subjecting them to fixed delivery timelines, potentially misaligned with their expectations.

Just as offering familiar payment options bolsters shopper confidence, transparently presenting shipping details on the product page increases your shopping basket size and mitigates cart abandonment risks.

Consider giving your customers a few different shipping options to choose from, such as standard, expedited, and express. Offer in-store collection if you have a physical location or a centralised collection location like a drop box as a greener option. This way, they can select the option that best meets their needs in terms of both price and delivery time.

One way to further reduce cart abandonment rates is to offer free shipping for orders that meet a certain threshold. This incentive can be especially appealing to customers who are close to meeting the threshold but may not be willing to pay for shipping. Actually, as many as 78% of customers are willing to spend more to qualify for free shipping.

Offering multiple shipping options gives customers the flexibility to choose the option that works best for them, which can ultimately lead to fewer abandoned carts. See this example of Schuh giving their shoppers multiple delivery options for a hassle-free checkout experience.

An example of Schuh giving their shoppers multiple delivery options to reduce cart abandonment rate

Fix Website Loading Speed

If your website loads slowly, people are likely to give up and go elsewhere. This is especially true if they're trying to buy something online. In fact, studies have shown that a one-second delay in page loading can reduce conversion rates by up to 7%.

Here are a couple of easy fixes for optimising your website's speed:

  • Use a content delivery network — a CDN is a network of servers that delivers content to visitors based on their geographic location. This can help reduce loading times, especially for visitors who are located further away from your server.
  • Optimise images — large image files can often be the culprit behind slow loading times. Resize and compress images before uploading them to your website.
  • Minify your code — minifying is the process of removing unnecessary characters from your code, such as whitespace and comments. This can help reduce file size and improve loading times.
  • Consider the size of the code for site add-ons — some require a lot of code to function on your website and this adds to the load time. When considering add-ons, consider the code size and impact on site load time.

By taking these steps to improve your website's speed, you can help ensure that potential customers stick around long enough to make a purchase.

Use Urgency and Scarcity

Urgency and scarcity are two powerful psychological triggers that can encourage people to take action.

You can create urgency by offering limited-time discounts or by highlighting how many items are left in stock. Scarcity works in much the same way - if people feel like an item is in short supply, they'll be more likely to buy it before it runs out.

In fact, according to a VWO eCommerce report, customers are 9% more likely to buy a product if it’s running out of stock and 10% more likely to buy if it’s trending.

Therefore, if you sparingly and effectively use urgency and scarcity tactics, you can encourage more people to finalise their purchases and reduce abandonment rates.

Set Up Cart Abandonment Email Automations

Sending a few well-timed emails to someone who's left stuff in their cart can be a game-changer. It's like a friendly nudge, reminding them what they almost bought and nudging them to finish their purchase. And guess what? This tactic can ramp up your sales without you having to spend extra on getting new customers. Sure, crafting these cart abandonment emails takes a bit of skill, but it's totally worth the effort. They can really pump up your profits. Need some pointers on where to start? Check out these best practices we've rounded up for you.

  • Make sure your subject line is attention-grabbing — remember, your goal is to get the person to open the email, so make sure your subject line is something that will catch their eye.
  • Use attractive visuals — people are visual creatures, so make sure your email is pleasing to look at. Use images of your products and include attractive discounts or coupons to further entice people to click through.
  • Keep the message short and sweet — nobody wants to read a long email, so keep your message concise and to the point.
  • Use coupons and discounts — as many as 57% of US online shoppers who used a coupon code said that if they had not received the discount, they would not have bought the items

When done right, these emails can be highly effective in encouraging customers to come back and complete their purchase. But there's a fine line to walk here - you don't want to come across as pushy or desperate. Instead, focus on being helpful and providing value. Let your customers know that you're there to help them, and make it easy for them to get in touch if they need any assistance.

A screenshot of an email notification reminding the shopper about their abandoned cart

If you can strike the right balance and engage with your customers, you'll see your cart abandonment rates start to drop - and that means more money in your pocket.

Shopping Experience Matters

It is just the nature of running an online business that customers will abandon their carts regardless of how good your eCommerce strategy is. Even if you do everything right, there will always be a certain percentage of people who simply change their minds or get distracted before completing their purchase.

But why is the cart abandonment rate in physical stores lower compared to the online world? When a shopper strolls into a brick-and-mortar retail store, they can leisurely peruse the entire product catalog, instilling confidence in every item they place in their basket. However, replicating this seamless experience online, especially with multiple product list pages, poses a significant challenge.

However, accepting cart abandonment as an unavoidable fate isn't the solution. Instead, the key is optimising your website with best practices for your Product Display Pages (PDPs), Product List Pages (PLPs), and homepage. This is precisely where the power of AI comes into play. By leveraging AI, you can instill confidence in your online shoppers, offering them personalized product recommendations, aiding in exploration, and dynamically adapting the store to their unique needs in real-time.

Take, for instance, Kitlocker, which harnessed AI to enhance product penetration, resulting in a remarkable 300% boost in conversion rate. With the right strategies and technology, you can tackle cart abandonment head-on and unlock greater success in the online retail landscape.

Exceptional Customer Experience - The Key to Minimising Cart Abandonment

Although it’s impossible to prevent every instance of cart abandonment, there are a few things you can do as a retailer or eCommerce marketer to reduce your rates.

By understanding the psychology behind why people abandon their carts and implementing some of the solutions we’ve outlined in this post, you should see a decrease in the number of lost sales due to abandoned carts.

And at the end of the day, that’s what it’s all about — providing a great customer experience and ensuring that your customers convert at a higher rate.

These six tips will help you get started, but remember that every business is different and you may need to experiment with different techniques to find what works best for you.


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