Around 70% of shopping carts get abandoned. That’s just the brutal truth of the eCommerce environment. So, what steps can you take to reduce the carnage? Hi, my name is Francisco, and I am the owner of Planet Marketing, a digital marketing agency. My company specializes in Google Ads, Facebook Ads and remarketing. Over the years, I have helped quite a number of eCommerce businesses come up with strategies to help reduce the harmful phenomenon of abandoned carts. Today, I am going to share the strategies that you too can use to recover abandoned carts for your eCommerce shop. This post contains the following sections;
What causes abandoned carts in eCommerce?
Find more statistics at Statista
It’s not so easy to get people to your eCommerce store. Anyone that has been in business for a while will attest to this fact. It can be disheartening, therefore, for people to leave without making a purchase. After all the effort that you will have put into attracting them, why do they leave, seemingly in a huff? The following are a few of those reasons;
Shipping costs exceed their expectations
That is the primary reasons why people may leave your site without paying for the goods in their carts. Perhaps the listed price on your site does not include shipping costs. Many eCommerce businesses do this as a way of attracting people with seemingly cutthroat prices.
However, that's not the best of strategies. Hiding shipping costs not only leads to abandoned carts. It also can paint an everlasting negative impression about your business in the prospect's mind. So, it's something to avoid at all costs.
Forcing people to leave lot's of personal information
Businesses are always on the lookout for ways through which to expand their mailing lists. However, you should not do so at the expense of convenience for your customers’ convenience. Forcing them to spend long minutes filling out forms before they can buy from you is probably not the best of ideas.
It’s much better to try and capture their details after the purchase has been made. Many people are also averse to having to open accounts before being allowed to buy. One option is to give people the opportunity to complete their purchases using guest accounts.
People still needing some convincing
A huge chunk of abandoned shopping carts occur because people still need convincing. They are not really sure whether or not yours is the right product. So, they get to your site and they are still hesitant. It’s up to you to convince them. You can do so using some of the strategies that are outlined here.
Your site is perceived to be insecure
Another reason for abandoned shopping carts in eCommerce is concern about security. If a person who is in the process of buying has doubts about your site’s security, then they are likely to leave in a huff. Perhaps your site does not have an SSL certificate. People are generally more willing to make payments via established platforms such as Paypay and Stripe.
Strategies to Recover Abandoned Carts
Losing out on sales through abandoned carts can be debilitating for a business. 70% lost sales are no laughing matter! However, it doesn’t have to be this way. The following strategies should help you recover abandoned carts for your eCommerce Shop;
1. Recover abandoned carts through remarketing
I noted at the top that remarketing is one of my areas of specialty. But what is remarketing and how can it be used to recover abandoned carts in eCommerce? Well, remarketing involves the use of specialized code to track user activity on a website. Based on that information, people are then shown relevant ads when they visit other sites across the web.
Google’s haunted ads
Most people complain about ads from Google that seemingly follow them across the internet. That’s remarketing at play. It can be annoying from the point of view of an individual, but it’s a useful eCommerce tool.
How it works is that an eCommerce business signs up to do remarketing via Google. They then get code on their site that tracks visitor activity. Let’s assume that the site sales computers. Now, when a visitor lands there from Google, they may be looking for a gaming computer.
After browsing through the products on your store, they will then add one particular product to their cart. From there, you would expect them to buy, but that does not usually happen. Anyway, if you are doing remarketing, the good news is that you get a second, third... and so on chance to convert them.
Whenever they visit a site that’s displays AdSense ads, your prospect will be shown your ads featuring that product from the abandoned cart. So, that’s good news. It means you have that much more time to convince a person to take the desired action.
Facebook does remarketing through Pixel. It works more or less the same way as Google remarketing. Once you have signed up for Pixel, you get to install a code on your website that keeps track of what people are doing. A lot of them will inevitably add items to their carts. Yet most will leave without buying for the reasons outlined above.
The good news if you are doing Facebook remarketing is that you get a chance to make your pitch one more time when your prospect visits their Facebook profile. They are shown your ads featuring the product in the abandoned cart. The best approach to remarketing on Facebook for eCommerce business is to do dynamic ads.
That’s something about which I have previously talked in my article on Facebook Ads marketing for eCommerce. Dynamic ads showcase various products depending on a person’s interest on your site. That interest is tracked through Pixel. Dynamic ads enable businesses to show just the right ad to the right person on Facebook.
How effective is remarketing?
You will notice that a large chunk of this article is dedicated to the issue of remarketing. That suggests that it’s an important issue. Many people want to know whether or not remarketing is effective as a means to recover abandoned carts in eCommerce.
The answer is; yes, remarketing is very important. Just to put things into perspective, the average conversion rate for eCommerce stores stands at a rather dismal 2.8%. So, any strategy that helps boost that is important.
But how far does remarketing go in terms of boosting conversions? Well, if you do remarketing, you can expect a boost in sales for your eCommerce store by as much as 400%. What it means is that you will get an overall conversion rate of about 10%. So, that’s not something to look down upon.
2. Use exit intent popups to recover abandoned carts
This is a strategy that you will see being implemented on some eCommerce sites. If you try to leave without making a purchase, a popup will appear on your screen. That is actually a good strategy since it tries to grab a person’s attention before they have left your site. The thinking is that it’s much more difficult to try to get a person back to your site than it is to keep them there.
However, you do need to sweeten the deal if you wish to turn a potentially abandoned cart into a sale. Remember that the person that you are targeting is already on the way out. To keep them there, you need to offer them something attractive.
I have previously come across sites that offer people discount’s on the products in their carts. That’s a good way of doing it. People are always on the lookout for a deal. So, if you offer them one, they are likely to think hard about leaving without buying. And even if they were to leave without making a purchase, chances are high that they will keep your store at the back of their minds.
3. Send them an email reminding them to complete the purchase
This is something that I notice a lot in the emails that I receive from eBay. There are times when I add products to my cart without completing the purchase. What then happens is that eBay will send me an email asking whether or not I am still interested in the said product.
Sometimes the gist of the email is that such and such a product is about to run out. There are only so many products left in stock! The idea is to induce a sense of urgency in me. That’s a good marketing strategy, by the way. People react best when there is a perceived sense of scarcity, even where that scarcity is only imagined.
Anyway, that’s something that you can consider if you wish to recover abandoned carts for your eCommerce shop. Probably you will have managed to capture a person’s email before the abandonment of the cart. Afterwards you will send them an email trying to convince them to come back to complete the purchase.
Again, you may wish to sweeten the deal here. They may have left your shop without making a purchase, but so what? 70% of people out there are doing it? You need to make it worth their while to come back to buy from you. If you offer them a discount, as an example, they are much more likely to be positively inclined to do so.
4. Use live chat tools on your site
Live chat tools for eCommerce sites are a subject that I recently covered on this platform. Remember what I said about people needing a little bit of convincing to make a purchase? Well, you can do that convincing using a live chat tool. Admittedly, this happens before the cart is abandoned, but it’s a good preventive measure.
Let’s go back to the example of somebody wanting to buy a gaming computer. That’s a big purchase and people will have a number of questions regarding the products in your shop. The live chat tool replaces the store assistant in this regard.
It enables people to ask any questions that they may have relating to the product, it’s cost, shipment and other issues. You do need to have knowledgeable people on standby, however. Otherwise they are going to scare people away by inadequately answering questions.
5. Pick up the phone and call
Getting back to how you can recover abandoned carts for your eCommerce shop, one thing that you can do is to pick up the phone and call. That’s assuming that you will have managed to capture the prospect’s contact details before their leaving your site.
There is actually something about this old fashioned way of reaching out that can be useful as far as marketing is concerned. It gives you the chance to talk one on one with the customer. You should try to have something on offer when you call.
Don’t just call because you wish to have them buy. Call because you have something to offer them. Perhaps it’s a discount. Perhaps it’s an extended warranty. That would be useful if the shopping cart abandonment was due to fears about the durability of the product.
6. Offer free shipping
We noted in the statistics from Statistica that shipping costs tend to be the major reason why people abandon shopping carts. In fact, 63% of people cite this is the reason for leaving without buying on eCommerce sites. So, what can you do?
The answer to this issue is to offer free shipping. Do that even if you have moved the shipping costs onto the product itself. It’s all about marketing, after all! It’s a very good idea to ensure that you are a little bit honest in your dealings with your customers.
What you don’t want to do is to spring surprises on the customer. If you do that, they will leave in anger. Making sure that the listed price includes shipping is a good strategy in this regard. And if you can offer truly free shipping, that’s would be great.
7. Display reviews on your site
This is another mitigatory step as far as strategies to recover abandoned carts for your eCommerce shop are concerned. It works before the fact. In other words, it works on people before they have abandoned your site.
Online reviews are a good way of showing people that your site is the real deal. They help convince people that you are able to deliver on your promises. It pays, therefore, to display product reviews on your site.
This topic is one about which I am particularly passionate. You just need to check out my site to find out what I am talking about. But why do I love this topic? Well, simply because online reviews can have a huge impact on a business.
Just to make things clearer, 90% of people will consult online reviews before buying anything. So, reviews are important.
8. Do you have enough payment methods available?
We noted at the top that some people abandon their shopping carts because they do not quite trust your payment methods. That’s something that you should address for your eCommerce store. Most of the eCommerce software that’s out there supports a wide range of payment methods.
These include Paypal, Visa, MasterCard and many more. Again, this is a mitigatory factor. It ensures that people do not abandon your eCommerce store in the first place. They need to be sure that they can easily make their purchase using a payment method that’s convenient to them. And they need to know that the methods of payment that you have on your site are all secure.
9. Display Security Seals
Security a major factor behind abandoned carts. One way of fighting against this is by displaying trust seals. That’s something that I have previously talked about. There are many types of security seals out there.
The first one is an SSL certificate. That’s displayed in your web address. If you do not have HTTPS on your domain, it means your site is insecure. Search engines will flag the site. And people will leave in a huff without making purchases.
Hopefully, this article will help you come up with the best strategies to recover abandoned carts for your eCommerce shop. Doing this is important. It’s so hard to get people to your site in the first place. You don’t want to waste that traffic due to abandoned carts.
The strategies that you can use to counter this phenomenon include remarketing, sending out emails and offering free shipping, among others. That last point is important since shipping costs are behind a large chunk of abandoned carts. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with me is you need help with Remarketing or with any of the other strategies that are mentioned in this article!