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Combating Cart Abandonment

The numbers are staggering: 75.8 percent of digital shoppers abandon purchases after adding them to their cart. For retailers, that percentage can cause a lot of worry. Let’s explore how retailers can make sure customers purchase items without leaving them in digital limbo.

Digital Window Shopping

According to SaleCycle, most customers abandon their carts because they simply weren’t planning on making a purchase in that moment. Others may only be adding to their cart in order to compare prices with another retailer. If they find a cheaper product elsewhere, they will abandon their cart and go with the more affordable option. This is simply typical browsing behavior and has little to do with the product itself.

Another reason why customers abandon their carts is due to high shipping fees and slow fulfillment. Although shipping costs are necessary for retailers, customers do not want to pay an overly expensive price that they can get for faster and cheaper on Amazon or other e-commerce websites.

In addition to surprise shipping fees, retailers that are not transparent with their prices will see higher rates of cart abandonment. In contrast, retailers that are upfront with their prices from start to finish will see more customers following through with their purchases.

And then there’s convenience.

Customers want their transactions to be quick and seamless, not tedious and time consuming. If customers don’t have the option of guest checkout, then they will be more likely to abandon their carts and purchase from a retailer that offers a more efficient checkout process.

From Browsing to Buying

Now that some problems have been identified, there are a few solutions retailers can implement to reduce shopping cart abandonment.

To recapture those ‘just browsers,’ smart retailers know that cart recovery emails and onsite targeting tools go a long way, with data suggesting that 60 percent of shoppers are more likely to return to their shopping carts within 1 to 3 hours after receiving a cart recovery email.

Easy Solution: To accommodate browsing customers, retailers should give them the option to create a wishlist with a “save for later” button.‍


If customers experienced a technical issue, retailers must make sure that their site can handle large volumes of traffic. They can either clear some cache or reduce the amount of images on the site to ensure a faster website speed.

In addition, retailers should be open to offering different payment alternatives and match those payment methods to local preferences. For example, adding methods like Paypal and MasterPass ensures that customers in other countries can purchase their products. This also builds personal trust in a company because customers know that the retailer is accommodating payment methods for other countries and is not solely focusing on one.

Speaking of trust, customers are more likely to abandon their carts if they are worried about a website’s security. Customers need to trust your site and the security of their payment. For this to happen, retailers should establish a professional site design, optimize site performance and display clear contact details and customer service links.

The Takeaway

Retailers must go the extra mile to ensure that customers complete the checkout process and do not abandon their carts. However, shopping cart abandonment is also considered typical browsing behavior when customers are just looking around.

There are many easy fixes to keep your customers from leaving checkout. Implement some of these solutions and watch your abandonment levels go down and your sales go up.