Top Tips to Increase Shopping Cart Conversions

This is a Guest post by Business.com

Losing customers in the checkout phase? You’re not alone. According to a 2013 Baymard Institute calculation based on 21 different studies, the average rate of online shopping cart abandonment is 67.75%. Every e-Commerce business is looking for ways to reduce cart abandonment and increase shopping cart conversions. While different strategies may work better or worse for different businesses, there are a few strategies you should consider if your e-Commerce site is taking a hit in sales due to cart abandonment. Here are three steps to get you going.

Consolidate the Checkout

A lengthy checkout could drive your customers away. Multi-page checkouts with extra forms and questions that are necessary should be crossed off your checkout process list. Another thing to consider would be making site registration a requirement. Some customers will prefer to check out as a guest and that option should always be available. In fact, a Webcredibly study found that 29% of online shoppers do not like proprietary registration forms during check out. Remember, you can always ask for account registration after the sale!

  • Top Tip: Make the checkout process as easy as possible, especially for return customers via auto-fill capabilities. The fewer the steps, the better.

Get Down to the Details: Returns, Shipping and Taxes

When it comes to shopping cart conversions, often times improving your sales comes down to the details. Shipping rates, return policies and details about taxes are all factors that can cause shopping cart abandonment. Forrester found that 44% of online customers abandon their shopping carts because of high shipping costs. Another study found that nearly 95% of buyers are more encouraged to make a purchase when shipping is made free.

  • Top Tip:  Provide your shipping rate (whether it’s flat or free) visible and make sure customers are well aware of each item’s return policy right on the product page.

Promote Your Products and Payment Options

Our world and online experiences are becoming more visually driven. When a customer has decided to add an item to their shopping cart, ensure your page features a dropdown menu near your cart logo that showcases the action they’ve just taken as well as what is already in their cart. This promotes your products, but you’ll also want to promote your payment options. For any e-Commerce store, Mastercard and Visa are a must. However, many often accept other forms of payment. Advertising your payment options can drive new customers to make a purchase.

  • Top Tip: If you allow customers to make a purchase with PayPal, American Express and Discover, let them know when they’re viewing their cart and make the contents of the cart easily viewed.

Even if you take these steps in increasing shopping cart conversions and a cart is still abandoned, there are additional steps you can take! Highlighting sales and specials, coupon codes and visually appealing images can go a long way in increase cart conversions. If a customer has bought from you before, remind them that they left a cart lonely. An email campaign that reminds customers of their abandoned carts could be the spark they need to make the purchase. Increasing cart conversions is all about simplifying things for the customer.


Author Bio: Erica Bell is the Social Media Specialist at Business.com Media, Inc. She guest blogs on a number of topics including social media, e-Commerce and B2B marketing. Connect with Business.com on Facebook!