How to Prevent Online Shoppers Abandoning Their Basket Before Buying

In the online retailing world, the hardest pill to swallow is quite possibly the abandoned cart. Somewhere in the checkout process, there is a customer-retailer disconnect that causes customers to abandon their carts. Kissmetrics even did a study back in 2015 that cited several issues of first step abandonments. Simple things like a different feel from the site to the checkout pages, lack of a progress bar, having to sign up or login, and even where in the process the shipping information and rates are played huge roles in cart abandonment.

But how do you actually prevent cart abandonment? Is it even possible? In today’s article we’ll take a look at some ideas of preventing online shoppers to abandon their basket before completing the purchase.

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How to Prevent Cart Abandonment?

Start With a Survey

Ideally, you would want to know why your customers have been abandoning their carts. From mobile users to those sitting at a computer, popups can be used in a survey customers and ask for their reasons of abandoning their carts. The results can be as shocking as they are insightful.

Remember, you can use an exit intent popup to conduct a survey asking for the reasons why your customers are abandoning their carts. This is also a great opportunity to give an extra incentive to complete the order. Extra incentives can include free items, an extra discount or if possible a reduced shipping cost. Your mileage will vary depending on which route you do decide to go. Testing each viable option is however, a must.

Minimize the need for a login

If you’re feeling frisky, you can minimize the need for a login almost altogether. While it’s great to have an email address for your email campaigns and site logins, for customers who may only want to buy this singular time from you it’s a huge turn off. Having an option to purchase as a guest visitor to automatically signing them up with their permission while doing a confirmation page would probably be the best practice.

Include shipping availability on the product page

Sadly, ecommerce is not the same as a brick and mortar shop, even if you have one. In this day and age, it’s almost assumed that whatever your product, you will ship to the ends of the earth. Some customers would much rather abandon a cart to see what the shipping rates and policies are before even looking at that nice little FAQ you have pinned to your menu bar. Amazon does this nifty little sidestep, they will tell you while you are still looking at a product whether or not it can be shipped to the prospective customer before it even hits the cart.

Use the same design across the entire website

Your checkout pages should be done in the same tones that your site is. If you have a bright coloured website, don’t go completely contrasting for your checkout pages. It can boil down to the most ridiculously seeming reasons, such as a different text and coloured button. It can also be the lack of upfront telling customers how many steps there are in your checkout process.

The look and feel of your checkout pages is as simple as making them match the rest of your site.

Show the Number of Steps

The amount of steps you have in your process can be shown with a progress bar, a counter, or even a combination of the two. It adds to the user experience (UX) overall because they can readily see how much more time they will potentially have to spend in this process.

Request Only The Necessary Information

Remember, online shopping isn’t as simple as walking in, grabbing what you want, heading to the register, paying and then walking out. The cashier doesn’t ask you for your address or your date of birth in order to complete a purchase.

Again, there is room to improve. Using a triggered exit intent popup at each step of the checkout process that is customized for that step may seem like a lot of work, but these provide very interesting options to retain your potential customer. What would you give to be able to never have another abandoned cart again?

SitePoint even covered 10 reasons why people decided to forego an online purchase. Some of the reasons include lack of payment options, coupon codes or promotional offers, and security features.

Use Secure Payment Methods

Accepting money online involves a lot of work. Most of the work is done just looking for the service that meets your needs. If your needs and your customers’ needs can be met with the same service, all the better. PayPal has made a great name for themselves and many potential customers would much rather use them as an intermediary than fork over sensitive numbers online.

You should also consider investing in an SSL which provides your website with HTTPS protocol and displays a green badge in the address bar of your browser. It tells your customers your website is secure and that their information is being sent over encrypted servers which reduces the chances of having their financial information being exploited.

Use Coupons the Smart Way

Having a coupon code or promotional offer is a great tool to get people to come to your shop in the first place, or to return. These are hallmarks of email marketing though. Quite a few people know that if they can get their hands on a coupon code they can usually make out a pretty nice deal. Having it prominently displayed on your website in the first few steps is actually a deterrent though. People will actually leave your cart to go look for a coupon code before completing their purchase, and at worst, will completely forget about the purchase because they couldn’t find one or it didn’t offer enough of a value for them. Offer this extra during the final stages of the payment process.

These are all things to take into consideration. It’s easy to meet your customer’s needs and wants if you truly want to. Using exit intent popups can show you where and why customers are abandoning their carts. Make the processes even simpler for your mobile users.

When all is said and done, you may never be able to completely prevent cart abandonment. But with the tips outlined above, you can prevent most buyers from actually abandoning their cart before buying. Use them to your advantage and share your own ideas on preventing buyers from abandoning their baskets in the comment section.


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