It’s difficult to improve your cart abandonment numbers without taking time out to fully understand why customers abandon their purchase activity. Don’t become concerned that your eCommerce store is the only one suffering from potential customers abandoning their carts. Almost 76% of all possible sales are lost to this problem across all industries. 

Yes, it’s a big problem. However, once you know what to do about it, you can take the proper steps to improve your results. Let’s take a look at the reasons why customers abandon carts and what you can do about it. 

1. Payment Security Questions

We’ve all been on those sites that just seem, well, sketchy. Let’s face it, we’re in a time where security scares have made it into the national news. Your customers are aware that some people get hacked when inputting sensitive information into online forms. If a customer feels any sort of fear when on your site, then it’s highly likely they’re going to leave without completing the order. Look on your site for any of these issues:

  • No SSL certificate
  • Outdated layouts
  • Design flaws
  • Missing images

Get those fixed and then focus on how to use social proof. You need to provide customers all the reasons for why they can trust your online store. Here are some tactics to help accomplish that goal. 

  • Product reviews
  • Reveal the face and bios of you and your team
  • Testimonials from happy customers
  • Provide your phone number
  • Use endorsements

Take the time to build a brand where customers can see clearly they’re dealing with real, reputable people. 

2. Getting Asked to Create a New Account

Online customers want to get things quickly and expect to experience convenience. Spending a lot of time making their order causes frustration because today’s consumer is looking for instant results. 

Many of your potential customers leave their carts when asked to create a new user account. A solution to offer first-time buyers is to give them a guest checkout option. This way, they can place their order without going through a step they see as a hassle.

3. Unexpected Shipping Costs

Never hide any costs associated with a customer’s purchase. Presenting people with unexpected shipping costs is a sure-fire way to experience high cart abandonment numbers. 

Don’t stop at shipping costs when auditing your cart experience. Are you losing sales due to other hidden costs such as taxes or requiring complimentary items? Not only do these costs make customers feel irritated, but they might complete the purchase and then feel immediate buyer’s remorse. 

The solution here is easy. Simply provide full transparency and disclosure so all customers understand what happens after they enter the cart experience. Another excellent way to fix this problem is to include the shipping in the cost of your product and then offer free shipping. 

4. Can’t Make a Decision

Some potential customers inside your ecommerce store are simply not sure about whether they’re ready to buy. You need to have systems in place to help capture their purchase in the future. 

For example, you can ask them if they’d like to receive a Gift with Purchase (GWP). A simple GWP offer will sometimes put an undecided customer over the edge. 

Another great strategy is using an exit intent popup to avoid cart abandonment. In that case, ask them if they’d like to subscribe for updates. Now, you have them on your email subscriber list and can capture their sale at a later date. 

Lastly, use retargeting codes on your website. Then, use paid ads to advertise to your customer at a later date on Facebook, YouTube, etc. 

5. They’re Simply Doing Research

A reason for cart abandonment that is closely related to being undecided is when your potential customer is in the research phase of their buying decision. Some people like to view various stores and compare:

  • Shipping costs
  • Prices
  • Special offers
  • Overall quality

Customers will add items to their cart so they can find the items later. Some folks will actually leave your store with full intent on coming back to make their purchase after they’ve completed the research. 

You can’t change this behavior, of course. However, you can work to better encourage a customer to stay within your store. Offer them price matching, for example. Or, offer to match the guarantees or money-back offers from competitors. 

One trend to be aware of is that customers are increasingly researching on one device and then coming back to complete purchases on another device. The solution to this problem is to use “visit summary” or “email my cart” functionality.

6. Confusing Checkout Experience

Confusion is never good for online conversions and can be a reason for cart abandonment. Customers become annoyed and frustrated when faced with long and confusing checkouts. Don’t make them use unnecessary forms that confuse or cause anxiety. 

Instead, ask only for information that’s absolutely necessary to make the sale. Keep your site’s navigation streamlined and reduce how many screens a customer goes through to complete their purchase. 

7. Price Might Feel Too Expensive

Some customers sit on your cart wondering if they might get an item at a lower price elsewhere. Don’t allow them to leave. Instead, offer them a discount via a timed popup. Simply receiving a small percentage discount at the very moment they’re about to decide to leave can often save the sale. 

8. No Express Shipping Option

We discussed the challenge of shipping costs above. Customers are extremely sensitive to shipping. This isn’t only related to the cost to ship. It also applies to how fast the shipping process takes to get their order to them. 

This problem skyrockets when customers are shopping late for a specific event, such as:

  • Birthdays
  • Holidays
  • Emergencies
  • Anniversaries

Customers will definitely abandon their carts if they realize you can’t ship on time. These are typically customers willing to spend more money with you in order to get things on time. Offer them the chance to spend more for express shipping. 

9. No Coupon Code Available

You’ll always find that some customers are chasing deals. They want promotional or coupon codes and will leave for the next store if they can’t find them easily. You might even be unwittingly presenting a feeling of missing out with your cart process. This happens if a coupon search bar is located near the checkout button. 

Solve this problem by implementing auto-apply coupons when possible. Check with your cart software to see if it allows for parameters where coupon codes pass through the URL. 

10. Unsatisfactory Return Policies

Some shoppers willingly admit they’d spend more with ecommerce stores if the return policy was more in their favor. 

Audit your return policy and ask yourself how customers might feel about it. Do you place too much restriction on the time they have to make returns? Do you make customers pay for their own shipping when returning items? 

Take measures to lift some of those restrictions. If you don’t do it already, test a free, 30-day shipping policy regarding returns. Over two or three months, see if there are any detrimental effects on profit. 

Don’t become overwhelmed by all the options at your disposal to improve abandoned cart issues. Take it step-by-step, just like you do with a website launch. Choose one of the above solutions and implement it. Then, choose a second. Over time, you’ll see an improvement in sales.