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Examples of the best ways to avoid cart abandonment
Usually when someone mentions “cart abandonment” the word “emails” is being muttered silently in peoples’ heads. Shockingly this is not the only way to avoid cart, trolley or even basket abandonment; no matter why they abandon, it is important to remember that they have shown they are interested in buying and might just need some more reassurance, help or reminders to guide them through the checkout.
Of the companies that try to deal with cart abandonment before it happens, most will change small things like the copy, images or layout and structure of the website. This does help but there are some more obvious additions you could make and other companies have made to their eCommerce sites.
When you are browsing the Sony store you are seeing some of the small changes that can be made to stop people from leaving even before they have added an item to the basket.
Look how reassuring this product page is, free shipping AND 30 days to return it if I’m not satisfied.
But this is not why Sony has made it to this list.
Sony clearly knows a lot about cart abandonment, they must understand that people don’t put an item in a basket and leave just because of price and features.
As soon as my mouse left the basket page I was met by this pop up message.
This is actually a genius way of helping both the customer and the business.
It captures shoppers who don’t have the time to complete their purchase and makes it more convenient for them at the same time.
Imagine walking to your local corner shop. You gather a basket full of things and walk towards the checkout only to realise you don’t have any money! So you ask the cashier if they can hold onto your basket until you get back with some money. You arrive back and pay for your stuff without having to make the same trip around the shop gathering things, how convenient!
This message fills the role of the cashier holding onto your basket, and the email address will identify you to make sure it is your basket you return to.
Amazon is obviously doing well in the eCommerce world, though I would say in some places they could refine the experience customers have.
They do have some well implemented selling tactics though. Just look at the page you see when you add an item to your basket.
I don’t know about you but several things on this page are telling me to press on to the checkout page.
Underneath the green “Added to Basket” they have added a stock notification to create scarcity and hurry customers along. You could argue it is just a handy way to see how much stock there is, but they did say “Only 7 left in stock” which isn’t really needed to tell people how many are left.
Anyway, so I have added a PS4 to my basket and I’m likely to be shopping for things that go with the PS4. Oh look, frequently bought together and customers also bought sections.
To save me some time and increase the chance that I’ll have time to get through the checkout, Amazon has made it as easy as possible to find what I’m likely to be buying.
Amazon has a few more suggestion lists similar to these which will keep the customer browsing and they will be more likely to find what they want to buy by seeing more personal suggestions.
If we proceed to the basket page we see another list; customers who shopped for the same item as you…
If I was signed in I would also see a 1-Click order button that would skip the checkout completely; super convenient, super fast and likely to catch shoppers with no time.
But something far more powerful lies on this page, and strangely amazon hasn’t made it a big call to action.
A “Save for later” option!
Hmm well it will probably ask me to login or hand over an email address *Clicks*
Well that was easy… someone who is not signed in and who doesn’t have time to shop can easily save their basket. Amazon really is trying to capture all types of cart abandoners.
I do like this feature, though personally I would make it more visible; maybe even have a popup point to the feature, similar to on Sony’s store.
The effort to stop cart abandonment starts straight away on Argos.co.uk. This landing page is already offering £10 or £5 vouchers for spending £100 or £50 respectively. They haven’t tried to hide it, or offer it to only a select few special customers. It’s hard to say whether this will be more or less effective than the pop up offers, but it is definitely going to push customers to buy.
After finding what I wanted to buy I expected to just progress to the checkout and take a screenshot there if there was anything interesting, but instead I found that the product page had a cool set of incentives.
What would you do and think if you were met by this when browsing a product?
Not only reviews, related products, one click, stock checks and finance options but also two little black boxes faded into view to tell me how many people had looked at it recently and how many had bought it before fading back out of view.
I feel like that information fading in and out was a clever metaphor by Argos. “These black boxes fade in and out as quickly as our products stay in stock… so you should probably hurry up and buy some, before it’s too late”
You may have read that I mentioned pop up offers a little earlier; well here is one from Samsung. To make this offer appear all I did was add an item to the basket and move my curser off the webpage.
But shhhh it’s a secret.
This is an offer for 5% off this order, it isn’t a voucher like the one Argos was offering, it is actually a discount you can use right now.
A very good incentive if you ask me, especially because it asks for an email address in exchange which can be used to promote to that customer again.
I visited each website multiple times and added a few different items to the basket each time, but Microsoft were the only ones I found to be A/B testing.
If you look at what happened when I added the same item to a basket and scrolled down you’ll see a reminder of how many items are in your basket and a prompt to go to the checkout following you down the page.
But when I repeated this with a new browser session I saw a new image. This is because Microsoft is testing the success of each of these images, if there is a significant difference between them then they will choose the more successful one and add a new image they think will work even better.
Obviously as well as A/B testing leading to long term increases in conversions, the feature itself will help to push customers to the checkout.
I also triggered a popup message by moving my mouse out of the window. The first time it was just a timer telling me how long my basket is saved. Not the best message ever because it included no way for shoppers who didn’t have the time to checkout to save their basket for a longer time than 45 minutes.
I tried again and triggered no popup, but the last time I tried I found the other half of their A/B test.
Take a look.
So a popup like the Samsung offer, but more money and it’s for a future purchase like the Argos offer. It might not be quite as powerful as the Samsung offer for pushing people through the checkout but if it does it then means the customer will return to use it and if they don’t then no money was used on getting that customer to buy initially.
Oh and did you notice that it also has a timer for the offer?
After I calmed down about that offer popping up I thought I would do some more browsing to see if anything else interesting would happen, and it did.
On the home page I was met by the usually hidden until clicked contact us tab at the right. I think this happened because from my actions I looked confused.
And if I really was confused I would have been able to click and see a sales person who will help me or just live chat by text. Either way not many companies were offering chat, and even less were offering video chat. So Microsoft were right to advertise it.
So I have spent the most time on Microsoft and with good reason, they had a lot of features that will stop cart abandoners. By sheer luck I found another one which might have been purposeful and might have just been part of their marketing campaign.
After leaving the site without buying anything I started to read a blog and noticed that the page way full of Microsoft adverts! All showing the products I was looking at or something very close.
And in this browser session all the other websites I had visited had the chance to use my cookies to show up on this blog but they either didn’t bid as much as Microsoft or didn’t have adverts set up to work like this.
This is the icing on the cake for Microsoft. If you imagine visiting loads of websites looking at this product and then leave to see this, you are going to be more likely to click on this ad or have the Microsoft store in mind when coming back to buy later.
Though no site I found had all of these features and covered all areas of cart abandonment you still could. Just think of the needs of shoppers who abandon their basket. Do they need more time? An offer? Reassurance? Assistance? A reminder?
If you need any help with your cart/trolley/basket abandonment don’t hesitate to ask us at iD30 for help and advice.
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