Recovering Abandoned Shopping Carts
Did you know that abandoned shopping carts are responsible for TRILLIONS of dollars in lost sales from ecommerce sites? That’s a lot of money businesses are losing, simply because customers don’t complete the check-out process, after adding products to their cart.
So what can you do to increase sales after a cart has been abandoned? Well there are 8 strategies that have been shown to significantly increase the probability of making a sale, even after a customer has abandoned their shopping cart:
- Collect email addresses early: Ask for their email address as the first step in the check-out process, not the last. This is because without their email, you cannot retarget them and if you don’t ask for their email address until the end of the process, when they abandon their cart you have truly lost any hope of contacting them.
- Remarketing tactics: That last point isn’t entirely true, because in some circumstances you can actually follow up visitors who have abandoned their carts, without their email address. How? Well if customers browse websites that are part of the Google Display Network it’s possible to get them back using Google Remarketing.
- Respond quickly: With 64% of carts retrievable within 48 hours and another 18% within 7 days, making contact with abandoned cart customers only makes sense. Contact within a few hours can mean an 11% conversion, compared to 6% after 24 hours and 3% after 7 days.
- Follow up: Design a follow up strategy that includes 3 emails, one to be sent as soon as feasible after the cart is abandoned, one after 24 hours and the third at 7 days. The first should be a gentle reminder about their cart and the second and third can include discounts or other tempting offers. You can also target different offers to customers who read your email, but did not return to their cart and those that returned, but again did not complete the check-out process.
- Automate your responses: Ecommerce sites are moving from manually responding to abandoned shopping carts, to automating the entire process. Automation saves time, money and effort. So automate your retargeting email campaigns and increase your conversions.
- Customised responses: You don’t have to send the same offers and messages to all customers who abandon their carts – you can craft different responses depending on the type of products abandoned and their cost. For example, free shipping might be appropriate for higher priced items whereas discounted offers might be better for lower priced offers. Of course, the more exclusive the items, the less you need to offer to entice them back to their carts.
- Don’t always offer discounts: This follows up from the last point, but is worth stressing. Don’t always offer discounts to customers who abandon their carts, because this can become a good incentive to actually abandon their carts – if they know you will offer them a profitable discount. So mix up reminder emails with those offering discounts or other incentives.
- Promote yourself: Don’t forget to remind your customers why your products are the best and why they should return and purchase your products. If the cart was abandoned because they were researching a product and comparing prices, promoting your products may be all the incentive the customer needs to convert.
As a last note, don’t forget to test your emails to determine whether a reminder or a discount (and the type of discount) is more effective in regaining lost sales.
For more information on designing your ecommerce site, increasing sales or recovering abandoned shopping carts, call us on 02 8211 0668, email us at [email protected] or complete our online enquiry form.
Meg is a Project Manager/Producer at Cornerstone with a special interest in conversion rate optimisation. She has a business analysis background and thinks the web would be a better place if everyone looked at their web statistics daily.