For many online shoppers, the e-commerce shopping cart has become a kind of bookmarking tool, rather than an actual indication that they’re ready to “proceed to checkout.”
An astounding $4 trillion worth of merchandise will be abandoned in online shopping carts this year.
But these abandoned carts don’t all represent lost sales. In fact, new estimates from BI Intelligence find that about 63% of volume in these abandoned shopping carts is potentially recoverable by savvy online retailers.
In order to win back those sales there are a number of routes retailers can take, from making costs more transparent, to promising price-matching, to eliminating the requirement that customers register for a given site.
We collected and analysed data from top e-commerce companies, and spoke with industry experts whose job it is to reduce abandonment rates and boost conversions, to come up with a number of solutions that can help retailers recover lost sales.
Here are some key takeaways from the report:
- Approximately $US4 trillion worth of merchandise will be abandoned in online shopping carts this year, and about 63% of that is potentially recoverable by savvy online retailers, according to BI Intelligence estimates.
- Shopping cart abandonment is increasing, and will continue to do so as more consumers shift to online and mobile shopping. In 2013, as many as 74% of online shopping carts were abandoned by shoppers, according to data shared with us by e-commerce data company, Barilliance.
- Retailers can reduce the rate of abandonment and increase conversions by streamlining the checkout process and also by retargeting shoppers with emails after they have left a website. Initial retargeted emails, sent three hours after a consumer abandons a cart, average a 40% open rate and a 20% click-through rate, which is high for marketing emails.
- An abandoned shopping cart should be seen as part of the increasingly complex series of steps a consumer might take before finally making a purchase, and a strong indicator of consumer interest in a product or a brand. Technology that helps retailers collect and leverage online shopping cart data is likely to be a worthwhile investment.
In full, the report:
- Explains the complex relationship between consumers and retailers, and outlines reasons why shoppers abandon a purchase.
- Includes interviews with executives from top retailers and marketing agencies who talk about what they are doing to reduce shopping cart abandonment.
- Proposes a list of solutions that are proven to reduce shopping cart abandonment for online retailers.
- Forecasts where this trend is going and how shopping cart abandonment will affect retailers — bricks-and-mortars and e-commerce companies alike — in the future.
Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through his personal investment company Bezos Expeditions.