7 Quick Ways To Stop Cart Abandonment

Cartoon of person using debit card and phone for online purchase

Many of your site’s visitors may add an item to their cart and make it to the checkout page. However, you will find many will close the browser tab before they complete the purchase. You’re not alone! A study found that 69% of customers abandon their shopping carts!

69% of customers abandon their shopping carts! #ecommerce Click To Tweet

Put another way, you could increase your site’s revenue just by getting more people to complete the purchase they originally wanted.

Simplify Your Checkout

When asked why they were leaving the checkout page, 26% of people said that it was because the checkout process was too long or complicated. Another 35% said it was because the site was forcing them to create an account.

Almost all studies and tests have shown that the shorter and simpler your checkout process is, the more likely someone will complete the sale.

By default, many ecommerce systems have up to a dozen fields on their checkout page. By removing as many fields as possible, you can increase the purchases your site has. If you compare the two checkout pages in the image below, which page are you more likely to complete the purchase on? Probably the second one.

Screenshot of two checkout pages. One with almost 20 fields and one with only 6.
The checkout page on the left has almost 20 fields!

Depending on which ecommerce software you are using, the steps to simplify the checkout process will be slightly different. For example, in Easy Digital Downloads, you could use the free Auto Register Addon to auto-create the customer’s account instead of having them set one up. You could then use the Checkout Fields Manager Addon to reduce or modify the information asked for on the checkout page.

If you are using WooCommerce, you might use the Checkout Field Editor to remove or edit the fields on the checkout page.

Depending on which payment methods you are using on your site, you may also be able to adjust settings for the information collected for the payment.

Build Trust On The Checkout Page

Another primary reason that people leave the checkout page is that they do not trust the site or product. You can build trust with your site visitors by adding a few items to the checkout page.

Social Proof

Your potential customers want to know the product they are buying is high quality and will solve the problem they are having. The best way to demonstrate that is by adding some social proof. When people are uncertain about a decision, they turn to the community for answers.

Screenshot of a checkout page that has a testimonial to the right of the payment fields.
Adding a testimonial alongside your checkout page is a great way to add social proof

By adding testimonials of people similar to them who had the same problems they have, the potential customer will feel more confident with buying from you. However, you cannot add just any testimonial. The keys to successful social proof on your checkout page are:

  1. Not too many. Typically, one or two are enough to increase conversion rates.
  2. The testimonial needs to appear like it is from someone like the potential customer with similar needs or problems.
  3. The testimonial needs to feel real. Adding the person’s website, job title, and picture are great ways to show the testimonial is genuine and not some marketing tactic.

Trust Seal

A study from Barilliance showed that 15% of the people who abandoned their cart said the reason was that they had concerns with their payment security. Knowing this, how can you assure site visitors that your site is safe? This is where trust seals can help.

Screenshot of a checkout page that shows "McAfee Secure" right below the credit card fields.

Adding a trust seal from a well known and reputable company helps make your site visitors feel that they can trust your site with their payment. In fact, Crazy Egg shows that when Blue Fountain Media tested adding a trust seal, they saw a 42% increase in sales!

You can get a trust seal from a variety of places, including some SSL providers and some security companies. For example, if you buy an SSL through Symantec, you can get a Norton Verified seal which is the highest converting seal but can cost hundreds per year.

Adding a trust seal can lead to an increase of 42% in sales! Click To Tweet

If you subscribe to McCafe for Websites, you get their seal. While their plan starts at free for small sites, it quickly goes up to $100+ USD per month as your site has more traffic. The most affordable service that includes a seal while also being a reputable company people trust is SiteLock which starts around $30 USD per month.

Guarantees

Consider a potential customer who is on the checkout page debating whether they should complete the purchase or not. They want to feel confident that the products or services will live up to the claims your website makes. One great way to add weight to your site’s claims is by adding a clear guarantee to your checkout page.

Screenshot showing a "30-day money back guarantee" message.

Through testing, Geeks2U increased sales by 49% just by adding a guarantee to their checkout page. Even by just adding the guarantee without doing any testing to optimize it, they still saw an increase of 11%.

Geeks2U found that the best guarantee was:

  1. Short – something that can be quickly glanced at
  2. Clear – something easy to understand
  3. Positive – text that focused on the benefits of their service

Reduce Distractions

In today’s distracted world, it is very easy for a potential customer to notice something else within your site or their phone and leave the page. The most successful checkout pages remove all other items from the page.

Screenshot of Ahoy's checkout page showing no navigation
Our checkout page has no navigation or footer links

When Hubspot tested some of their pages, the pages saw increases up to 28% in conversions when they removed the navigation. By removing sidebars and additional content from the checkout page, you could increase sales by up to 50%!

Email Followups

Out of all the potential customers that abandon your checkout page, BI Intelligence estimates that 63% of them are recoverable! So, how can you get them back to your site to complete the purchase?

By getting the site visitor’s email address, you can send them email followups to entice them to come back to your site. This is so successful that Great Fermentations’ cart abandonment campaign had converted 25% of the people they emailed.

An email that was sent out when someone abandoned a shopping cart starting with "Your shopping cart has been reserved".

Even better, sending these emails is a great way to ask for feedback as to why some of them chose not to buy from you. Including a simple “Are there any questions I can answer” or similar text can reveal interesting concerns you may not have considered before.

Through various tests, ConversionXL found that sending an email within 30 minutes, another after 24 hours, and then a final one three days after converts the best for their clients.

One of the easiest ways to get started with cart abandonment emails is by using Jilt email marketing. Jilt specializes in email marketing for ecommerce sites and contains many features designed explicitly for cart abandonment. There are also several WordPress plugins set up to work with WooCommerce that also offer cart abandonment emails.

Once you select a tool, the next step is crafting your emails. A great site to browse to get some ideas is Really Good Emails. This site contains many emails sent by various companies, and you can select which category of emails you would like to see.

The best strategy for writing these emails is to keep them short and focused on getting the potential customer back to your site to complete their purchase.

Targeted Messages And Popups

In addition to sending emails to those who left your site, you can also send a message to the person right before they leave your site. You may have come across messages or popups that appear right as you are about to leave a website. This is called “Exit Intent”.

You can target messages or popups that show only to the potential customer when they are about to leave the site by using an exit-intent message. Depending on the specific tool you are using the steps may be slightly different.

With Ahoy, you can set up any message to have an exit-intent trigger and to show up only on the checkout page.

A message in the bottom-right corner of the checkout page saying "Save 5% if you buy now!".

Then, when the customer is about to leave, they will see your message. This message could provide additional trust-building or offer an incentive, such as a special discount code. One of our sister products, Popup Maker, has used Ahoy to recover thousands of dollars just by adding an exit-intent message to the checkout page.

Next Steps

Now that you have some strategies to reduce the number of people abandoning carts on your site, it’s time to implement these strategies and begin testing them. To effectively optimize your site’s conversion rate, testing different ideas and techniques on a regular schedule is essential. 

We’ll be exploring other strategies, including A/B testing, in future articles so subscribe to our newsletter so we can notify you when new articles are published!

Frank Corso

After creating several successful WordPress plugins, including WP Health, Frank is now focused on helping ecommerce sites grow through using our products including Ahoy and Popup Maker.

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