Target researchers to combat cart abandonment
August 15, 2012 Leave a Comment
We all know that shipping costs are a huge contributor to cart abandonment.But many shoppers also abandon carts because they simply don’t intend to buy in the first place, according to recent data from online measurement firm ComScore.
As presented below in an infographic by local shopping services provider Milo, shipping costs take second place to research as the top reasons shoppers abandon carts, with 57% of consumers saying they place items in the cart even when they’re just just window shopping and 56% saying they use the cart to save items for later.
Concerns about shipping expenses round out the top five reasons shoppers abandon carts, so clearly merchants should still fine-tune their shipping policies, spotlight delivery timelines and offer free shipping discounts during the upcoming holiday season. But the data suggests merchants should also cater to the research-oriented shopper who may not buy on an initial visit — but could be convinced to finalize the sale soon online or in a store. To do so, consider a two-pronged approach: assist research behaviors while at the same time highlighting incentives to buy immediately. Try these tactics:
Streamline the wish list. The fact that shoppers are using the cart, rather than the wish list, to save items for later suggests that wish list features are too much of a hassle to use. Merchants almost always require shoppers to register for an account before setting up a wish list — but technically, there’s no reason to do so; items could be saved to a wish list the same way items remain in the cart for a set amount of time between visits. Apparel merchant Abercrombie & Fitch allows shoppers to save items to a wish list with comments, to email the list to a friend and to share it socially — all without forced account creation.
Spotlight research-oriented cart features. If toying with wish list functionality isn’t feasible, then consider making explicit to shoppers the fact that their items will be saved in the cart using a “save for later” link. Similarly, consider offering a printer-friendly version of the cart contents so that shoppers can take the list with them to physical store locations. Manufacturer Dell allows shoppers who have stepped through the process of customizing a computer’s components to save the information, explicitly stating that unsaved carts will expire in 30 minutes, as well as to print the cart or email it for future reference.
Highlight urgency. If an item in the shopper’s cart is sought-after and going fast, flag it to give them incentive to buy now. Similarly, if items need to be ordered soon for delivery in time for a key date or because they require special handling, spotlight the message in the cart so shoppers are aware of the contingencies and can act immediately.
Incorporate free shipping messaging. Free shipping is the top incentive merchants can offer to spur purchase completion, so let shoppers know what it would take for them to get it. Use a banner at the top of the cart content to message current shipping promotions or, if your technology allows it, display exactly how much more shoppers need to add to their carts to qualify for the discount. Backcountry.com displays a free shipping offer, how much more the shopper needs to add to the cart to qualify — and even spotlights recently viewed items to spur an extra cart addition.
What cart tactics have worked for you to spur purchasing — whether on the spot or on subsequent visits?