• October 18 2023

Understanding Shopping Cart Abandonment in Ecommerce and How to Reduce It

Being able to attract customers to your online store and encourage them to add products to their shopping carts is a huge win in the dynamic world of e-commerce. But there’s one obstacle every e-commerce brand faces: shopping cart abandonment.

This happens when potential customers suddenly abandon their cart without completing their purchase despite careful selection. This is a common issue that results in lost sales and missed opportunities. 

In this blog, we’ll dig into the problem of shopping cart abandonment. We’ll also break down why this happens and, most importantly, share practical tips to help you reduce cart abandonment and regain sales that might otherwise have fallen.

What is Shopping Cart Abandonment?

Picture this: A visitor lands on your online store, browses your range of products, carefully chooses items that resonate with them, adds them to their cart, but then, for some reason, they leave your website without buying anything. 

Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? Well, you’re not alone. In fact, according to Statista, the average online shopping cart abandonment rate is an astonishing 69.57%

This high abandonment rate is a genuine concern for e-commerce businesses because it directly chips away at their revenue potential. However, it’s not a lost cause. By understanding the reasons behind cart abandonment and implementing effective strategies, you can significantly reduce these rates and recapture sales.

Factors Contributing to Abandonment and Their Impact on Sales

Before we plunge into these strategies, let’s take a moment to grasp the primary culprits behind cart abandonment:

The Maze-like Checkout Process

A clunky or lengthy checkout process is one of the top reasons customers abandon their carts. Shoppers crave simplicity and convenience. If your checkout process is complicated, requires еxcеssivе information, or is confusing, you’rе likely sending potential buyers running in the opposite direction. 

The Sting of Hidden Costs

Surprise, surprise! Hidden fees, step shipping costs, or unforeseen taxes that appear at the checkout stage can be a deal-breaker. Transparency is the name of the game; customers expect honesty, and any hidden costs can erode trust and send them packing. 

The Window Shopping Syndrome

Sometimes, shoppers use their online carts to compare prices, check shipping options, or see how different products stack up against each other. They load up their cart and then go to other websites to see if they can find a better deal. This can lead to cart abandonment on your site.

The Trust Deficit

Trust is crucial in e-commerce. If your website doesn’t look trustworthy, customers might hesitate to make a purchase. They could be worried about their personal information, whether your business is legit, or if your products are any good. If trust is lacking, they won’t feel comfortable completing their order.

The Distracted Shopper

Life is full of interruptions — phone calls, social media pings, and countless other distractions. Sometimes, these distractions steer shoppers away from your cart, and they might not return to complete their purchase. 

No Guest Checkout Option

Requiring customers to create an account before they can buy something can be a turn-off. Many shoppers prefer a guest checkout option that lets them purchase without making an account. If you force them to register, they might just abandon their cart.

Technical Glitches

Imagine you’re in a store, and suddenly, the lights go out or the cash register stops working. You’d probably leave and go somewhere else. The same goes for online shoppers. If your website has glitches, loads slowly, or shows errors, it’s frustrating, and shoppers might give up and leave.

Understanding these reasons is like having a map to navigate through the challenge of cart abandonment. By addressing these issues, you can create a smoother shopping experience and reduce cart abandonment rates, which means more salеs for your business. Now, let’s dive into the strategies to address this pressing issue.  

Practical Strategies to Reduce Cart Abandonment

Now that we’ve uncovered why cart abandonment occurs, let’s explore some practical strategies to address this issue and turn those abandoned carts into successful purchases:

Streamlined Checkout Process

To combat cart abandonment, simplify your checkout process. Fewer steps and information are the way to go. 

Make it as simple as can be for customers to finalize their purchase. Consider offering a guest checkout option so they don’t have to create an account if they don’t want to. Or you can add more convenient payment options. The goal is to make the process as seamless as possible.

Remarketing Campaigns

Implement targeted remarketing campaigns to rekindle the interest of customers who’ve previously abandoned their carts. Use emails or ads to gently remind them of the items they left behind. Personalization is basically your secret weapon here. Display the products they were eyeing, sweeten the deal with discounts or incentives to lure them back in.

Exit-intent Popups

Employ exit-intent popups as a safety net to catch users who are teetering on the brink of leaving your website without completing their purchase. These pop-ups can swoop in with enticing discounts, free shipping offers, or other incentives to specifically persuade users to stay and finalize their orders.

Abandoned Cart Recovery Emails

Send personalized abandoned cart recovery emails to customers who’ve left items hanging in their carts. These emails should be a blend of persuasion and allure, for e.g., striking images, persuasive product descriptions, and a clear call to action. Additionally, don’t shy away from offering exclusive discounts or limited-time offers to tip the scales in your favor.

Leveraging AI for More Effective Recovery Efforts

Now, let’s see how Artificial Intelligence (AI) assists you in overcoming shopping cart abandonment issues. AI isn’t just the future; it is also the present when it comes to e-commerce. Here’s how it can make a substantial difference:

AI-driven Remarketing

AI can be your secret weapon in analyzing user data and behavior. Using AI, you can leverage information such as browsing history, shopping patterns, previous purchases, etc., and build perfect remarketing campaigns. Thus, this improves personalization and increases the chances of conversions. 

Personalized Abandonment Recovery

Think of AI as your personal shopping assistant for each customer. Using AI, you can jump deep into individual client profiles and create recovery plans that are as one of a kind as the clients themselves.

AI knows what they like, what they’ve purchased before, and what might entice them. Whether it’s suggesting alternative products, recommending complementary items, or conjuring up discounts tailored to individual preferences, AI is your personalization wizard.

Case Study: Zalora

Zalora, the premier online fashion retailer in Southeast Asia, also faced the common e-commerce challenge of cart abandonment. With over 41 million monthly website visits and more than 20 million app downloads, Zalora has a substantial customer base. However, shoppers struggled to find the desired products in a catalog bursting with over 3,000 brands. This led to frustration and, ultimately, cart abandonment.

The solution? ViSenze. By implementing ViSenze’s Smart Search technology, Zalora transformed the shopping experience. Customers could now search for products using images, screenshots, and even social media posts. This smart move improved customer engagement and significantly reduced cart abandonment rates.

ViSenze’s use of Amazon EC2, EKS, S3, and Lambda allowed them to deploy AI/ML-based solutions swiftly and efficiently, ensuring scalability to meet Zalora’s needs. The results evidently speak for themselves: a happier customer base and more successful shopping journeys, demonstrating that the right technology can make all the difference in conquering cart abandonment.

Future Trends in Addressing Shopping Cart Abandonment

As technology continues to evolve, so does the battle against shopping cart abandonment. Here are some exciting future trends to keep on your radar:

  1. Chatbots and Virtual Assistants

Imagine having a helpful assistant available 24/7 to answer customer queries and guide them through the shopping process. Chatbots and virtual assistants are becoming increasingly complex, providing real-time assistance. They generally help customers navigate issues, answer questions, and even provide product recommendations, reducing abandonment rates.

  1. Voice Commerce

The rise of voice-activated machines like smart speakers is ushering in a new era of voice commerce. Integrating voice commerce capabilities into your e-commerce platform can provide a seamless and convenient shopping experience. Additionally, customers can browse and make purchases using voice commands, reducing the friction that can lead to cart abandonment.

  1. Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR)

AR and VR advances are revolutionizing the way clients interact with products online. Imagine being able to try on clothes virtually or see how furniture looks in your living room before making a purchase. These immersive experiences surely build confidence and reduce uncertainty, leading to fewer abandoned carts.

Taking Charge of Cart Abandonment

In this competitive world of e-commerce, reducing shopping cart abandonment isn’t just an objective; it’s a need for long-term success. Your clients have alternatives, and they anticipate a consistent, hassle-free shopping experience.

By using the strategies discussed in this blog, you’ll be able to turn the tide on cart abandonment, recuperate potential misplaced deals, and construct more grounded client relationships.

Ready to embark on this journey to reduce cart abandonment and secure lasting success for your e-commerce business?

Try ViSenze Smart Visual Search and Recommendations and get a step closer to reducing cart abandonment! Get a demo today!