Combating Shopping Cart Abandonment

Written on the 1 December 2011

No, I’m not talking about leaving your freshly emptied Woolworth’s shopping cart in the parking lot instead of the trolley bay (although, that’s a fad I’m also keen on combating!). I’m talking about the 70% of online shoppers that abandon your shopping cart before they make their purchase.

“70% of online shopping carts get abandoned? Did I read that correctly?”

Yes, you did. Statistics show that, on average, seven out of every ten online orders do not go through to completion. There are various reasons for this. Some shoppers are put off by high and unexpected shipping costs. Others shy away from giving away too much personal information in order to make the purchase, particularly if the questions don’t seem relevant. Others are simply window shoppers, and are comparing your final price to your competitors’.

The good news is, 10% to 30% of abandoned shopping carts can be retrieved with some simple email REmarketing.

"What is email remarketing," I hear you ask? It’s very simply an email that is automatically sent to the address of the cart abandoner. It can contain a simple, “We see that you’ve still yet to finalise your purchase, would you care for some assistance?” Or, you can devise a marketing plan that will help persuade the abandoner to return to the cart and make the purchase.

Here are a few tricks you might like to include in the email to retrieve some sales:

  • Offer Assistance - Younger online shoppers are used to the idea of purchasing over the Internet, but many older shoppers still require the person-to-person contact in order to feel secure. Include a phone number they can call that allows them to purchase over the phone, or a link to an email address where they can request help if it's more convenient for them.
  • Waive or reduce the shipping costs - 75% of cart abandoners claim excessive shipping or delivery costs as a reason for not purchasing a product. If you can afford it, include a discounted delivery code in the remarketing email to help convince your shopper to buy from you.
  • Offer an overall discount - If your cart has been abandoned by a window shopper, or someone comparing your prices with your competitors', a discount code may be the key to getting them back. A 10% discount may be enough to secure the deal. Alternatively, let them know of any discounts on bulk purchases they are entitled to, or offer them a free gift if they complete their purchase within a specified time frame.
  • Be friendly - Shopping is an emotional experience and often people abandon a purchase because they are not emotionally attached to it. Your remarketing email should be friendly, down-to-earth and likeable. This is not the time to boast about your achievements or cross promote other products. It’s your moment to make friends with your shopper and, if you can achieve this, you’re more likely to make the sale.

The Bloomtools Shopping Cart allows for a remarketing email to be sent to the owner of an unfinished shopping cart within one day, and the content of the email can be fully customised to your requirements. Custom fields make the emails more personalised - including the customer’s first name gives the impression that you have taken the time to personally write to the shopper. You can include pictures and formatting to create a great looking, easy-to-read email, and the Shopping Cart allows you to create discount codes to include in the body of the email.

During the festive season, shopping cart abandonment will be an even greater issue for your online store.

So, given there’s a possibility of retrieving up to 30% of those lost sales, it’s well worth investing the time to develop an email remarketing campaign that will help you get even greater results from your online presence. Be creative, have fun, and get rid of those abandonment issues once and for all!