Reducing Shopping Cart Abandonment Rates

E-retailers must take every possible step and pour resources, efforts, time and money into optimizing their shopping carts to improve conversion rates and sales. Shopping cart abandonment rates are a struggle for most e-retailers as understanding how to tackle this problem can be a setback. High shopping cart abandonment rates indicate lost sales and missed revenue opportunities that can be converted into sales after effective persuasion.

According to Baymard.com¹, the average documented online shopping cart abandonment rate is a staggering 67.75%.What makes this statistic tough to analyze is the idea that there can be a variety of factors behind high shopping cart abandonment rates. Online consumers give emphasis on some of the most important factors such as high security during transactions, website design, and navigation.

E-retailers can resort to the following ways to reduce shopping cart abandonment rates:

Provide Live Chat

Providing live chat to online customers can help in several ways including better customer engagement, higher customer satisfaction, and improved online sales. Providing live chat during the crucial checkout phase helps to solve customer queries quickly, thus reducing shopping cart abandonment rates.

Offer Free Shipping

Online consumers tend to have several queries regarding shipping policies, exchange policies, return policies, etc. According to a Forrester research report², 44% of online consumers abandon their shopping carts due to high shipping costs, while 22% abandon their shopping carts due to no mention of shipping costs by the retailer at all. This is a substantial amount of customers who are leaving shopping carts simply because they are either unaware of the costs or they are too high. Companies who are able to offer free shipping have a huge leg up on their opponents by ensuring a happy and loyal customer base.

No Hidden Charges

One of the biggest pet peeves of online customers is getting all the way to the check out page and suddenly their order total jumps considerably. You cannot surprise online consumers like this. According to Web Credible UK’s survey³, 49% of online shoppers abandon their carts due to sudden hidden charges that surface after checkout. If the e-retailer needs to apply charges for sales tax that are mandatory as per rules or laws, this should be introduced by way of a calculator in the shopping cycle. This way, customers can be kept well aware of the additional charges that will be levied and are not surprised at the time of checkout.

Shorten the Checkout Process

Shortening the lengthy checkout process can prove wonders for your website. This simple step can improve customer satisfaction and chances of conversion as the customer does not have to go through a tedious checkout process. Multi-page checkouts asking customers to fill out forms, surveys, and questions increases the chances of shopping cart abandonment. Providing features such as express checkout can help customers to speedily complete the checkout.

Send Reminders Regarding Abandoned Carts

Every abandoned cart represents a missed revenue opportunity when the ‘assisted’ can be converted to sales. Sending emails to customers reminding them about their abandoned carts can result in customers completing the sales because sometimes people just forget! Other examples of helping customers remember what is in their shopping chart are ‘Save for Later’ or ‘Wish List’.

Utilize Colorful, High-Quality, and Bright Images of Products

Studies have found that online customers like colorful websites using high-quality, bright images for the products. Additional features like zoom in, seeing their products in preferred choices of colors, and different views of products have also been found useful. Simple enhancements such as these really help customers feel like they are in the store physically holding and seeing the products instead of just looking at a computer or tablet screen.

Prominently Display Coupon Codes, Discounts, and Promotional Offers

It is very important to prominently display, or have a separate section, for coupon codes, discounts, and promotional offers. We all know the feeling of being completely satisfied with our purchase, then stumbling upon a “Get an additional 20% off!” promo code after the transaction has been made. That feeling of excitement and joy quickly turns into anger and disgust. According to E-tailing connected customer survey?, 62% of online shoppers feel it is important for an ecommerce website to have a section for items such as coupon codes and discounts.

By implementing the above tips, businesses will witness increased online conversions, reduced shopping cart abandonment rates, and higher customer shopping experiences.

By |July 29, 2013|


Amit is passionate about helping business leaders adopt strategic outsourcing to make their business and workforces healthier and more productive. Amit is a subject matter expert on Live Chat and Digital Marketing including Social Media, Data and Workforce Management Analytics. He loves sharing his thoughts on How industries can benefit using Live Chat Solutions, Digital Marketing, and effective customer engagement solutions.

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