14 Top Reasons for Cart Abandoment
(plus how to fix them)

KEY
2019 (Based on 1,323 respondents)
2018 (Based on 1,023 respondents)
2017 (Based on 707 respondents)
(1) Additional unexpected costs (Shipping / taxes / other)
12%
13%
13%

In joint number 1 position for this year are unexpected costs at the final stage of the checkout leading to a very high proportion of respondents abandoning their cart . Particular examples of these include:
– International shipping is too high once they enter their destination country on the checkput page.
– A sales tax is applied to their shipping address.
– Expediated shipping is too high and need item quickly

How to fix issue?
– If you are selling internationally establish multiple dispatch centers around the world. It will often be much cheaper to use a fulfilment centre based in Australia for example, than posting each item seperately to the Austrialian customer. This will reduce your shipping costs and cart abandoment rate
– Make the shipping rates more clear through out the process. We have customised certain ecommerce systems to ask for their shipping destination early on in the process so the customers knows exactly what the final cost will be.

(2) No applicable shipping option (i.e. none specified to your country or no fast / tracked options)
12%
11%
10%

Rising to joint number 1 position for this year are no applicable shipping options. Customers appear to be having increased expectations of fast delivery. A potential reason could be that Amazon and other top retailers have pushed the fast expediated delivery so now same day or next day delivery has become the norm for many buyers.
Delivery options have also become more advanced, for example you can now deliver to a local post office which some people prefer if they are at work. Customers have become used to these options after buying on eBay or Amazon and expect ecommerce websites to offer the same.
Another interesting rise is the increase in abandoned carts due to not being able to find the correct international shipping options. eCommerce across the world is growing.

How to fix?
– Ideally a shipping solution is very detailed in the backend, but simple for the customer. For example you could specify hundreds of shipping options dependent on total cart value, country, weight, dispatch times etc but ideally the customer only views the appropriate one. Based on the products they have added to the cart. We can customise your dispatch needs so it is simple but thorough for the customer.
– Internationally shipping can take a lot of setting up and adminstration but there are many modules and API connections that can now link directly to the courier or postal service. This can ease the burden of using international shipping couriers.
– Make sure you have no gaps in your calculations. We have fixed a lot of ecommerce sites where certain cart totals relate to no shipping options, but if you add a penny or more all options are shown. 

(3) Delivery was too slow
11%
8%
8%

Delivery time seems to be becoming a more of a deciding factor for purchase.

How to fix?
– Possibly fulfill from new dispatch centers around the world, this will reduce the shipping time to international countries. Let us help you set up a stock and shipping system to cope with multiple dispatch locations.
– Add fast shipping options for customers who are in a rush for your product
– Explain in a reassurance block why the product takes so long to arrive, i.e. is it custom made

 

(4) Checkout process was too long or complicated
10%
12%
11%

Reducing slightly for this year possibly as checkouts advance and open source ecommerce systems advance to one page checkouts.

How to fix?
– Are all of your checkout fields totally necessary? Maybe some could be remove or shortened
– Maybe upgrade to a one page checkout?
– Are your error reponses clear for the customer. i.e. if they enter an incorrect value does it clearly inform the user on how to fix it. This can be frustrating otherwise

(5) Had to create a new account
8%
10%
10%

Reducing slightly for this year possibly as guest checkouts become more the norm and checkouts become simplified

How to fix?
– The short and obvious answer is to allow guest checkout. But really the only difference between the 2 checkout options is the password field. You enter a password to create and store the information. You could alter the checkout process so it is less cumbersome to add a password and create an account. Gaining a registered user with a sale is a bonus so convincing the user to sign up to an account is often a good way to go.

(6) Website had errors on checkout (mobile)
8%
5%
4%

Increased for the third year running. Presumably as mobile checkout becomes more common place and eCommerce companies have sometimes been slow to adapt.

How to fix?
– A full audit on your mobile theme to identify and fix errors
– Including improving any display issues or more simple issues where the font is too large on mobile devices for example

(7) I didn't trust the site with my personal information
6%
4%
1%

Very interesting as this has increased for the third year. Media reports of  personal information being exposed in data breaches is now common place. For example Facebook revealed in 2019 that 540 million accounts had been exposed. And you can argue that this is becoming a major issue for the shopper. In fact in this analysis it has become a bigger issue than not trusting the site with their credit card information. Now the user is starting to not trust the site with any information at all.

How to fix?
– Add links to privacy policy or summarise key points. Add a note under your newsletter sign up highlighing that you will not sell or pass on data to any other company
– Make sure theme looks professional and up to date. An out of date theme can conjure detrust from the user.
– Comply with the new General Data Protection Regulation rules

(8) Was only conducting research (possibly will buy in future)
6%
4%
4%

Increased this year by 2%. Possible as shoppers are becoming more savvy. Another potential reason could be that some shoppers have worked out that if they do not complete the sale they actually recieve a voucher via email which makes the sale cheaper.

How to fix?
– Send a resurrance email asking the potential customer if they need any help with their sale. This increases trust in your company.
– Email them a voucher code from your cart abandoment email offering them an incentive if they complete their checkout.

(9) I didn't trust the site with my credit card
5%
7%
8%

Interesting as this has decreased this year whilst not trusting the site with personal information has increased. Various reasons could be with the rise of ‘letsencrypt’ securing a website has become easier, and many more sites now use third party payment processors such as paypal or stripe which have improved their modules and security. It has generally become a lot simpler to add secure payment methods to open source ecommerce sites as the industry matures.

How to fix?
– Install an SSL certificate if you do not have one and fix any issues so the green padlock in the browser always show. For example is their a linked image that is not https://
– Install a reasurrance block that highlights green padlock, secure payment options
– Make sure theme looks professional without any errors to increase trust in site
– Clearly display contact details

(10) Website had errors on checkout (desktop / tablet)
4%
6%
5%

Decreased slightly this year potentially as major open source ecommerce systems evolve and fix bugs.

How to fix?
– Start with an audit and find all of the errors.
– It might not just be standard error messages, this could be CSS issues that need addressing. For example a page not be displaying correctly or the text too large and obstructing other elements
– Analyse log files for errors
– Update to latest theme and modules
– Test on various browsers / devices for thorough testing

(11) Voucher code could not be used
3%
5%
6%

Decreased year on year, are voucher codes becoming less popular? Potentially.

How to fix?
-Consider removing (or hiding) your voucher code field. This sounds unusual but often customers see that your checkout has a voucher code option. They then spend the next 10 minutes searching the internet for vouchers codes for your website. Try a few out, but with no luck. However they spot a voucher code for your competitors site and that is the end of your sale.
– If vouchers are essential for your business, take the power back by displaying all usable vouchers on the checkout page itself. This reassures the customer they are not losing out.
– Install an ‘abandoned cart’ plugin or develop a module to email customers a voucher code to entice them back to your website with a 5% or 10% reduction.

(12) No returns policy or returns policy was not satisfactory
3%
2%
2%

How to fix?
– Make the returns policy more noticable.
– Potentially a pop up with a simple list of your returns criteria at the top, before the arduous (but often neccessary) legal text.
– If you sell items that are often returned (i.e. clothes) then a summary reassurrance block of your returns policy might be a good idea.

(13) Not enough payment options / desired option not shown
3%
4%
6%

How to fix?
– At the least customers expect 2 payment methods – Paypal and a standard credit card provider. These can be easily added to any ecommerce system.
– With higher value goods customers might expect some kind of credit facility with payment over a certain amount of months. There are many credit companies that now offer this service and can be set up on your online checkout.
– There is also a growing demand for payment via newer technologies such as ApplePay or Amazonpay. These can be added as options now to any checkout
– With B2B ecommerce sites there might also be the need to offer a credit checkout facility or a proforma invoice.

(14) Transaction declined or issue with payment provider
3%
5%
4%

How to fix?
– This could be an issue with the payment module installed within your ecommerce, its best to track the logs and see if the error can be identified.
– You could have the verification settings too high with your payment provider.

Other Issue
6%
4%
8%

How to fix?
‘Other issues’ could be a range of reasons outside of your control. For example the customer might lose internet connection whilst checking out, or they could become distracted by a ‘real-life’ event.
The best way to deal with this is to get the customer checked out as quickly as possible. Minimising any potential losses.

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