The  current rate of shopping cart abandonment is 79%. That is 79% of  shoppers abandon their purchase at checkout for one reason or another.  This article will help you make changes to lower this percentage and  increase your e-commerce revenue.

In  the realm of bricks-and-mortar stores, the percentage of cart  abandonment is much lower. For example, a customer strolls through a  store, compares items, adds them to their cart, and just as they are  reaching the cashier, they drop their basket and walk away. Or they  check all their items through, look at the total and decline to  purchase. Or, finally, they go to pay, and even though they have a  myriad of purchasing options, the store doesn’t accept any of them.

If  this was the case in a retail environment, a high street store’s  lifespan would be extremely short. The example above, whilst not  entirely relevant to e-commerce shopping, is a good way to visualise  your customers leaving your store. We’ve compiled 7 common factors that  may increase your cart abandonment rate including a case study of the  Amazon checkout process.

1. Lack of Trust

Customers are becoming more savvy, more  aware of fraud and spam emails. Whilst the emails from the overseas  prince or businessman, offering you millions for your bank details are  considered humorous now, card fraud or identity theft is no joke. 

There  are several important trust symbols you can activate easily on your  store checkout page that will reassure your customers.  It’s imperative  you acquire trust symbols from reputable suppliers and brands the  consumer recognises, for example, Norton, VISA or VeriSign. 

SSL certificates will encode your customer's data using public key cryptography and  activate a secure session offering peace of mind and security during the  transaction process. They apply the “s” to your HTTP, a visual padlock  for shoppers data. 13% of all cart abandonment is due to payment  security concerns. Simply by making you store lock and key safe, you  could increase your conversions by 13%.

It’s not just your website  that needs to look trustworthy. Can you hand on heart say you are a  trustworthy retailer? Hidden charges, such as VAT or delivery amounts,  poor customer service or misleading descriptions can deter customers.  You can be sure after a poor shopping experience, a customer will tell  friends and family, and in the worst case, it will go viral. Be open and  honest with your customers; this can be anything from a pricing  calculator, an open-ended returns policy, free delivery or a cast iron  money back guarantee.

Other trust factors include:

  • Product reviews.
  • Providing an FAQ for common questions
  • Clear contact details & office location

2. Short Attention Spans

We  are a culture of the multiscreen, it’s undeniable. It’s a common  occurrence for tech savvy customers to sit with a television on in the  background, browsing stores on their laptop whilst using chat apps on  their mobile; that is 3 screens to contend with. However tempting it is  to offer multiple upsell offers at checkout, newsletter signups or lead  generation articles; try to resist distracting your customer too much  during the checkout process.

3. Avoid navigational disasters

No  doubt you are already using strong call to actions throughout the rest  of your e-commerce store, don’t stop at checkout! Reduce any confusion  and continue to guide your customer. The checkout page should be clearly  laid out, preferably with a “breadcrumb trail”  to show users how many steps are left. By seeing the steps needed to  complete, it can often make the journey easier, especially if it’s a  long process. We recommend a checkout that’s no longer than 3 steps, to  minimise frustration and stop customers dropping out along the way.

The  back button is also an important part of navigation on a checkout page.  You may feel it’s counterintuitive, essentially allowing customers to  back out of a purchase. However, mistakes can be made, maybe the item is  the wrong size or colour, potentially a spelling mistake a postal  address, and if you’ve made a mistake, cancelling this form and  returning to the product page can be a chore. 

Only make your  customers fill out their information once, simplify your forms and try  not to trap your customers at the checkout. You could miss out on  valuable business. Not only will customers need to change the size or  colour of your product, they may want to order more to qualify for a  free delivery over purchase amount offer.

4. Speed is Essential

As  mentioned above, we recommend a checkout no longer than 3 steps, simply  to speed the process up. The faster it is, the less the likelihood of  drop off via frustration or confusion.

First, check that your entire website is performing at it should. Use Google’s Website Speed Test to make sure you have optimum load times, on every device. A slow load  time anywhere on your website will affect your customer experience, page  ranking and ultimately your revenue.

Little touches like  auto-filling forms or automatically applying any first-time user  discounts can make the shopping process faster and appear more tailored.  By automatically applying a discount, and lowering the total cost  without any action from the user, you help solidify their commitment to  purchase and consumers feel like they have a great deal.

Guest checkout is essential. We know how important data is to your marketing strategy, however by  giving a little you stand to gain much, much more. 23% of cart  abandonment is due to “no guest checkout function availability/having to  create an account”. ASOS offer a guest checkout option that is 4 steps  to complete, nice and easy with no account needed.

By sacrificing marketing data you are oiling the checkout process, if  these customers return, they are more than likely to sign up for an  account on the second, or even third order. Especially if you entice  customers to sign up with special offers or member benefits. ASOS are  the champions of this, not only with members-only reward scheme but  early entry to sales, competitions and money off vouchers.

5. Did you forget something?

Sometimes  customers are just browsing, just as customers browse in a  bricks-and-mortar store. Allowing customers to save their carts, or even  automatically doing it for them and allowing them to pick up where they  left off, not only increases the chance of a purchase but also opens a  communication channel for your to email them with items they’ve  forgotten. Now, storing too much data can seem a little creepy, but if a  user is logged in and abandons purchase last minute, there are tools at  your disposal to push them to purchase. 

Amazon, (see the  checkout case study below), are champions of the “Did you forget?”  email. Even without entering the checkout process, just by placing an  item into the cart, Amazon will contact you regarding your potential  purchase. They also include other similar option to the items you  abandoned. Try to utilise this opportunity and set up something similar,  maybe design a shopping cart abandonment email campaign for future drop outs and see the automatic impact it has on your sales.

6. Accept all payment possible

The  digital wallet is the way of future shopping. Customers who embrace  online wallets are the customers of tomorrow, relying less on  traditional payment methods. Don’t alienate them by offering outdated  payment methods, it’s can only benefit your business in the long run.

As  mentioned in the example above, it’s rare to get to a physical check  out and them not to accept multiple forms of payment, limiting yourself  to just Paypal or another service adds a third party between you and  your customers, increasing the dropout potential.

7. Pay attention to your delivery charges

Hiding delivery charges until the end of checkout is likely to annoy your customers, and current statistics show 28% of abandonment is down to expensive shipping costs.  We’ve spoken about transparency and trust, and hiding this information  to the end is likely to result in a closed window or a quick search for  your competitor. Where possible offer free delivery or an increased  order value will result in free shipping. This will negate any dispute  at purchase point and will make your store look all the more attractive.

Where  this is not possible, be transparent about your costs. Your business  may simply not be able to offer any delivery discount due to large or  fragile items, maybe you prefer to use a tracked or signed for delivery  service.

To wrap everything up, there are four emotions that trigger cart abandonment: Impatience, confusion, caution and indecision.  These four emotions can occur at several stages through the buying  process. If you can convert these negative emotions into confidence,  security and excitement using the actions above, you’ll be sure to  reduce your checkout abandonment percentage and increase your bottom  line.

ShopWired offer plenty of tools to help you reduce your cart abandonment rate, try us free for 14 days today.


Shopwired have amazing customer service and will help you in anyway they can Ian Dyke Vape-it UK
Shopwired is an excellent ecommerce platform at an excellent price!. Phil Hotchkiss Hot Covers
Fantastic product, fantastic customer service...what more can I say. Mike Young The Rubber Stamp Gallery
ShopWired - a great decision - 10 times better than the old site. Khush Jabble Kapz.co.uk
After trying different ecommerce sites shopwired by far was the most user friendly site to use. Mark Toy Great White Surf
Great company, with the best customer service. Hakan Hemstrom Herts Hemp
Finally a company that has perfect customer service Theresa Jane Chiles Vin Treasures
The support and instruction from ShopWired has been fantastic Jaime Flintham Noosa Bay Designs
Customer service second to none Colette Wagstaffe The Middleton Collection
A revolutionary advance in website design, maintenance and management Kate Helliwell Neph Aromatics
It's better than Shopify, especially if you're British Mike Rouse Activist Direct
Shopwired is an excellent ecommerce platform at an excellent price!. Phil Hotchkiss Hot Covers
Fantastic product, fantastic customer service...what more can I say. Mike Young The Rubber Stamp Gallery
ShopWired - a great decision - 10 times better than the old site. Khush Jabble Kapz.co.uk
ShopWired is rated 5/5 stars by reviewers on Trustpilot - the best rated ecommerce platform in the world.