14 Proven Tactics To Fight Shopping Cart Abandonment

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated September 12, 2022 | Published September 29, 2021

Updated September 12, 2022

Published September 29, 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

A person sits at a desk and looks at a tablet and a laptop.

Since the ecommerce environment is different from that of retail stores, online businesses may encounter unique challenges in marketing their products to customers. One common ecommerce obstacle is preventing online customers from abandoning their virtual shopping carts. Understanding shopping cart abandonment can help you optimize your online store to reduce this phenomenon and close more sales on your ecommerce site.

In this article, we explain how to fight shopping cart abandonment with 14 tactics and show the importance of reducing the phenomenon.

Why is it important to fight shopping cart abandonment?

Shopping cart abandonment occurs when an online customer puts items into their cart but leaves the site before making a purchase. A high abandonment rate may cause website issues, but it also reflects lost sales opportunities. Effectively addressing shopping cart abandonment can promote customer retention and maximizes sales, and may also help increase the number of leads the site converts to paying customers. It can also help you optimize your sales funnel more effectively and affordably to increase sales and reduce costs as much as possible.

Related: Retail vs. Ecommerce: What's the Difference?

14 ways to fight shopping cart abandonment

Here are 14 ways to fight shopping cart abandonment in your online store:

1. Use trustworthy transaction forms

When building your checkout page, use trustworthy software for transactions. This can help establish trust between the customer and company by demonstrating care and concern for their personal information. Consider incorporating a recognizable logo or disclaimer that explains which software your business uses to secure the customer's transaction. By establishing this credibility, you may persuade more customers to purchase the items in their cart.

Related: What Is an Ecommerce Business? (And How To Start Your Own)

2. Show the customer's progress

Often, the checkout process requires a few key steps, such as inputting shipping details and payment information. To remove any potential confusion, consider adding a visual that shows the customer's progress within the transaction. This might be a banner at the top of the checkout page that shows a customer where they are in the process. This gives the customer an idea of how long the transaction will take, which may make them more likely to finish each step.

Related: How To Get Ecommerce Certifications (Plus Types)

3. Include images of the products

After a customer adds items to their cart, it might help to continue to display images of those products. This reminds customers of what they added and reinforces why they are shopping on the site. Additionally, this practice keeps the physical product as the focal point of the purchase rather than the price, checkout process or shipping costs. This may reassure customers that they're making the correct purchase and potentially streamline the process.

Related: 26 Ecommerce Marketing Tips

4. Simplify website navigation

When designing an online store, try simplifying the navigation process to appeal to the customers. One way to do this is by making it easy for customers to navigate from the online store to their shopping carts. You might add pop-up options for users once they've added a product that asks if they want to proceed to checkout or continue shopping. This can help the customer understand the options available to them.

Related: Physical Stores vs. Online Stores: What's the Difference?

5. Offer multiple payment options

Paying for a product online requires reliable payment sources. There are many different ways to make a purchase, whether it's a digital transfer or a credit card. By offering multiple payment options, your business ensures that most potential customers have a method of payment that best suits them. A wide range of payment options may remove another obstacle in the checkout process and reduce the chances that customers abandon their shopping cart.

Related: 10 of the Top Ecommerce Companies

6. Display reviews from other buyers

On the product or checkout page, consider adding reviews from other buyers. This can persuade the potential customer that the product is reliable. If a customer feels confident in the product, they may feel more prepared to purchase online. Establishing this initial trust may also be crucial for converting new leads to paying customers, as they can use the reviews to establish a baseline of trust for a new brand.

Related: 21 of the Most Important Technology Trends in Ecommerce

7. Include a call to action

It's important to consistently encourage potential customers to proceed to the site's checkout page. However, it's best to write a call to action—a statement that prompts the customer to complete their transaction—that matches the style of the rest of the online store. For example, if you use friendly, approachable messaging, create a call to action that matches this tone. A call to action may guide customers to make purchases more quickly, depending on the urgency and content of the message.

Related: 51 Call-To-Action Examples and Why They Work

8. Add an option to return later

Another feature you might add to your online shop is the ability to return to a cart later. You could implement a login process to ensure that the customer's cart saves until the next time they visit the site. Allowing customers to return to their carts hours or days later encourages the customer to purchase on their own time. This can increase convenience for users and potentially decrease the number of abandoned carts. You can also send an email reminder with a link to their saved cart.

9. Offer guest checkout options

If your online store requires a customer to log in before making a purchase, consider offering an option to check out as a guest. This can shorten the process for customers who want to make a one-time purchase. Because customers value their time, this option appeals to those who only want to make a purchase if they can do so quickly. Those customers may return to your store simply because it's quick and simple, and they don't need an account.

10. Reassure customers

If a customer feels unsure about the product's reliability or online store, they may not make a purchase. To solve this problem, consider adding a money-back guarantee or a return policy and displaying this information at checkout. Including assurances about their purchase may make the customer feel more confident about completing the transaction. Customers take a risk when purchasing something online, so a money-back guarantee can help mitigate some of that risk and reinforce trust.

Related: 40 Ecommerce Interview Questions (With Sample Answers)

11. Display all transaction details

Because shopping online may incur extra shipping or handling fees, it's important to display all the transaction details to the customer to retain their trust. For example, if your company has high shipping costs, explain the reasoning in a short statement on the payment page. Additionally, providing delivery estimates or package tracking numbers signals the customer that you have a reliable delivery system.

12. Find areas for improvement

Consider assessing the analytics of your online store frequently to find areas for improvement. If you notice that customers often leave your site after seeing a certain pop-up, you might remove it and try a new strategy for communicating that information. Improvements in these areas can optimize the customer's experience and potentially increase sales by retaining the customer's attention.

13. Optimize the speed of your site

When designing an online store, try to create a site that functions at high speed, as it's important to decrease the time a customer spends waiting for your site to load. However, if there's a stage in the checkout process that requires a short wait, tell the customer why this happens. For example, you might display a loading bar showing the transaction's progress. Customers who understand why they're waiting may be less likely to abandon their cart.

Related: 10 Ecommerce Jobs To Consider (With Duties and Salaries)

14. Send reminders

If customers abandon their cart, consider sending reminders about their in-progress transactions. You can use an automated system to text or email that they still have items in their cart. Reminders can continue to place the product in front of the customer, which may persuade them to make the purchase.

Explore more articles