Getting buyers to purchase products on your eCommerce website sounds easy enough, right? Set up a pricing page, enable a cart checkout process online, and sit back and watch the revenue roll in.
If only it were that simple.
Shopping cart abandonment is a huge issue among eCommerce companies. It is when a prospective customer adds your products to an online cart but then bounces before completing the checkout process. In 2016, online shoppers abandoned $4.6 trillion in merchandise. Research compiled by 99firms.com shows that the average cart abandonment rate is nearly 68%.
There are many reasons why your customers abandon their shopping carts — and concrete ways to help reduce your rate.
Reasons why shoppers abandon your shopping cart
Your customer is not ready to purchase
A significant number of shoppers are not ready to purchase their desired items right away due to pricing. In fact, 41 percent of shoppers are not ready to purchase and 24 percent want to save products for later consideration. This is mainly because they find the total price of their desired item too high to purchase, so they end up browsing rather than purchasing.
You have a complex checkout process
Do your customers need to click through five different pages to complete a purchase? Then it might make sense to reduce the number of pages they visit. The more you can simplify the process (e.g., reduce the number of clicks required), the better.
In fact, 23 percent of shoppers end-up not buying because they find the checkout process to be complex. The complexity of purchase leads to bad customer experience, which pushes buyers away from your products, and eventually your business.
Some signs of a complex checkout process:
- Too many form fields
- A clunky UI, especially on mobile
- Unclear calls to actions and copywriting
- Requiring potential customers to set up an account with your site
You have a slow website
A slow website can increase abandonment by 75%, and loyalty drops 50% when your site is slow.
You are asking for too much information
The top values most online shoppers prioritize today are convenience and seamlessness. Twenty-one percent of shoppers end-up leaving their shopping cart because they are being asked to enter too much information that they sometimes find unnecessary.
You are not offering multiple payment options
When designing your eCommerce checkout pages, you don’t want anything to come between your customers and a satisfying, frictionless shopping experience.
However, if you only offer a single payment option or very few payment choices, you’re potentially leaving money on the table. Offering more payment options eliminates obstacles to purchase, and makes it less likely a prospective customer will abandon your shopping cart.
While it can be a hassle to offer more payment choices, it’s the right thing to do for your business — as you’re giving your customers what they want.
4 Ways to Reduce Shopping Cart Abandonment
1. Give away deals and coupons
Everyone likes a good deal. Buyers, no matter if they’re online or offline, always want to feel like they’ve gotten an item for the lowest price they possibly can offer. Make it easy for them to purchase your products by offering deals and coupons. Offering discounts by way of coupon discourages cart abandonment and encourages new trials.
2. Reduce the number of form fields
One of the steps to optimize your shopping cart is by making the payment process easy. An easy way to improve conversions on your eCommerce checkout pages is to only ask for what is needed. This means taking a sharp look at your form fields. Do you really need to ask for everything?
According to a recent UX study by Baynard, the average eCommerce site has 12.8 form fields in its checkout flow. While this number is actually a 14 percent improvement over 14.88 form field measurement Baynard recorded in 2016, it’s still too high, considering that sites can conceivably achieve checkout flows in as few as 6 to 8 fields.
3. Offer customer financing
Customer financing allows shoppers to enroll in a payment plan to buy goods or services online. At checkout, they have the chance to continue with a third party and complete that purchase. Similar to a credit card, the merchant receives a full payment upfront. On the other hand, the customer receives the purchased item right away and pays it off over time.
Some advantages of offering customer financing include:
- Create ease among shoppers. With customer financing, shoppers are able to purchase more items on your site.
- Increased basket size. Because they’ve got an extended credit line and the option to pay in installments, shoppers feel more comfortable buying in larger quantities.
- Higher Average Order Value. Customer financing is often successful at getting customers to make add-on purchases, which increases the customer’s average order value (AOV). It also encourages customers to upgrade to expensive versions of products rather than settling for the more affordable product they can pay off immediately.
Empower your consumers to buy without reservation
Online shopping carts are primarily abandoned because shoppers don’t have the money to pay for their purchases upfront and in-full.
ViaBill is a customer financing solution that changes the way people shop online and get shoppers what they deserve. They seamlessly integrate into a merchant’s website and offer a payment solution that empowers shoppers with the financial freedom to buy now and pay in equal monthly installments with zero interest. Meanwhile, merchants get paid upfront and in full.
How e-commerce merchants benefit from customer finance solutions
High buying frequency percentage
According to a research study conducted by ViaBill in 2017, shoppers are more likely to shop more often when they are using customer financing rather than traditional payment methods. In fact, they feel more at ease shopping with an extended credit line and are more loyal to that specific payment method.
Increased basket size
Payment options with extended credit lines and installments lead to purchases with larger basket sizes. That’s because, when cutting down the load of the total cost, shoppers feel more comfortable buying more and paying in installments over time.
391 billion reasons to choose customer financing
A high buying frequency and increased average basket sizes are what make customer financing an attractive solution to online merchants. In fact, Filene Research Institute estimated the annual size of the POS financing market at $391 billion, which is approximately 3.5% of annual consumer spending, with health care, electronics, and home goods as the leading categories.
4. Provide online support through live chat
The trend toward conversational sales means prospective customers want more opportunities to chat and consult with you before they buy your products or services. A great way to pave the path for conversational sales is by equipping your checkout page with a live chat widget or chatbot. Buyers can get all the answers they need without ever abandoning your shopping cart.
Live chat helps boosts conversion rates and sales. And, depending on how technical your products are, live chat can help you address feature-specific questions from customers on-page. Chatbots can also be configured to trigger targeted messages depending on certain conditions (e.g. a prospective buyer spending a longer-than-average time on your checkout page.)
Shopping cart abandonment is a fact of eCommerce life. By building your pricing and checkout pages with a customer-first approach, you can start to see conversions and sales increase, and customers returning for more.