You are browsing through a retailers website and found a product that you really wanted. You are excited about the price of this product and immediately added it to your online shopping cart. You continued to shop and found another product that interested you for a great price and added that to your online shopping cart as well. You now have two products in your online shopping cart. You are excited and was about to place your order. You started the checkout process and then noticed that the total price in your cart is $10.00 more than the total price of the two products together. Upon closer observation, you noticed that you are required to have a minimum of $100.00 in order to qualify for free shipping. The total value of the products in your shopping cart is $75.50. You do not want anything else but now have to pay $10 more for shipping and handling. You are disappointed. You abandoned your loaded online shopping cart. Does this sound familiar?
I personally had this experience recently. It made me wonder why customers fill up their online shopping carts and abandon them. I am not sure if the business pay attention to this detail to understand why customers abandon their online shopping carts without buying the products. But, understanding this information could really help online retailers get a better understanding of the customer behavior.
Here are some of the reasons that make customers abandon their loaded online shopping carts and what the business could do to avoid it.
1. Shipping Policies. Customers are required to spend more money in order to qualify for free shipping. Companies must understand that customers are looking for good deals and great prices. When they see high shipping costs or requires them to make high minimum purchases to be qualified for free shipping they naturally tend to abandon the shopping cart, leave the website and shop elsewhere.
Business must learn from online companies like Zappos where it clearly states on their website “Free Shipping & Returns”. If the store has brick and mortar presence they could also opt for “Site to Store” option for free like how Walmart does. This will be a win win situation both for the business and the customer and should help in reduction of the abandonment of the online shopping carts.
2. Difficult Navigation. The complex navigation process on the retailers website is another reason why customers abandon their loaded carts. They need to keep the navigation process simple and the whole ordering process as easy as possible. The overall browsing and ordering experience must be easier and faster. Keeping it simple will please the customers and should help in reduction of the abandonment of the online shopping carts.
3. Purchase Requires An Account Creation. Some websites require customers to create an account on the website in order to place an order. Many customers are concerned about their online privacy these days and may not always like to create an account to order something, especially if they order less frequently. Letting the customers checkout with a guest account by making sure they provide all the required details would be pleasing to some customers. This should help in reduction of the abandonment of the online shopping carts.
4. Return Policies. The return policies must be clearly legible and must be easy to locate on the retailers website. If the store has a brick and mortar location, it would be great for the customer to know that he or she could return or make an exchange at the store, without any questions being asked. This will definitely make the customer more comfortable to make a purchase. This should also help in reduction of the abandonment of the online shopping carts.
5. Mobile Friendly Websites. Since many customers are using mobile platforms to make online purchases, the retailers must make their websites more mobile browser friendly. This will definitely encourage the mobile customers to do their online shopping with ease. This should also help in reducing the abandonment of the online shopping carts.
6. Customer Service. While the customers are shopping online, they do have questions. The retailers must be easily reachable via a toll-free number in order to help with the customer’s questions so that the customer could checkout confidently. This will definitely help the customer in case he or she has any questions that needs to be answered before making an online purchase. This should help in reducing the abandonment of the online shopping carts.
7. Customer Feedback. In order to improve the overall process and to gain more understanding of the customer behavior, the retailers must do some analysis by reaching out to the customers who abandoned their loaded online shopping carts and get their feedback via a survey or a questionnaire. They could offer some incentives to the customers for their feedback by giving discounts on their future purchases. By doing this the business would be be able to get some amazing insight from the customers that could help improve the overall customer experience which could also help in reducing the abandonment of the online shopping carts.
Conclusion. There is a great chance that businesses could win their customer back in this competitive market. An abandoned online shopping cart does not mean that the customer is no longer interested. If the businesses pay attention to these seven points mentioned above, and show the customer that they really care, it will be a win win situation both for the business and the customer.
Disclaimer: This is my personal blog. The opinions and thoughts expressed are solely my own, based on my personal experiences and does not represent my current or previous employers in any way.