Why Customers Abandon Shopping Carts And How To Fix It

Many online stores have a huge problem when it comes to abandoning carts. As a matter of fact, studies show that on average, three in four of all online customers abandon shopping carts before they checkout, leaving the carts full. How do you fix it? Well, if you’re an existing business owner, you’re already experiencing this firsthand. On the other hand, if you’re a future business owner, it’s inevitable to see this phenomenon often, once your business is up and running.

Just think about the high number of potential sales left pending because of this strange problem. If you’ve already found ways to prevent it, you’d definitely see the change in monthly revenues. The point of this article is to briefly provide you with 6 causes of cart abandonment rates and what you can do to solve them.


1. Delayed Shipping

Some online shoppers will visit your store to place urgent orders, which they’ll expect to be delivered before a certain date. For example, if someone wants to buy a dress as an anniversary gift, they’d expect it to be delivered on time – before the celebration. Therefore, if you fail to deliver on time due to faulty logistics, you’re very likely to have abandoned carts.

How can it be fixed? You should offer various delivery options. For example, try offering ‘express delivery’ options, whereby you’ll guarantee to deliver within 24 hours, for a small fee. However, remember to disclose this extra cost from the onset. Guaranteeing customers that you’ll deliver on a certain date will benefit both you and the customer because it’ll reduce work in terms of customer inquiries, such as asking when they’ll receive their order. Also, it will improve overall customer satisfaction because they’ll know when to expect their delivery.

2. Checking shipping costs for future purchase

It’s very common for online shoppers to load carts just to estimate costs. They then come back later to complete the purchase, once they’re ready. You’ll even note that many websites now offer the ‘enable cookies‘ option, to have users memorized and save their abandoned carts for some time. That way, shoppers can easily return to complete their purchases.

Your store should have an automatic delivery calculator that will give the estimated shipping cost when a customer loads the cart. The estimated cost will be based on the customer’s location. As they add products to the cart, any additional shipping cost should automatically be calculated and immediately displayed.

The customer doesn’t need to be logged in and using their account to view this estimate. Even non-account holders should be able to get their estimated shipping costs. Disclosing the delivery cost increases the chances of them completing their purchase.


3. No free shipping as implied

Some sellers display their products with a ‘free shipping‘ label, until customers load their carts and get the ‘no shipping to your location’ notification. Others will offer ‘free shipping’ without disclosing that it only applies to a certain quantity. Both tactics will often result in abandoned shopping carts.

Offering free shipping to all your customers, regardless of their location, will help you close far more sales. In fact, as a result, these customers are very likely to become loyal ambassadors to your brand. On the other hand, if it’s too expensive to offer free shipping for certain countries, you could always offer free shipping for an elevated free shipping goal.

For example, customers in certain countries get free shipping for any purchases amounting to $100 and above. However, keep in mind that if this free shipping goal is unreasonable and out of their budget, they’ll still abandon the cart.

4. ‘Wishlist’ – Save products to buy later

As we mentioned before, many e-commerce stores require users to enable and accept the site’s cookies to save abandoned carts for some time. This allows potential customers to come back and complete their purchases.

Let’s talk about wishlists. Your website should include such section, to let shoppers save interesting products. They can then come back and buy the products later when they’re ready. As a result, this lowers the number of your abandoned carts. This also allows you to know their potential buyers’ interests.

Based on these interests, you can market directly to customers through follow-up messages or emails whenever there’s a sale or offer. The message or email can also be just a reminder to complete the purchase. This is one way to return customers to the store.

Remember to send the follow-up message or email to these customers within a day. This is when the products they’ve saved are still fresh in their minds. Personalized emails will work for you because they have a five percent conversion rate, and a forty six percent CTR rate.

Include other customer’s reviews or discounts or free shipping codes in the email. This will help attract these potential buyers back to your website.

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5. Need for an account

Some e-commerce stores require their customers to create accounts in order to purchase. This can easily result in cart abandonment.

Solution: Your store shouldn’t limit customers to only purchase through a user account. They should also be able to do this through a guest account. Give them the option of purchasing using their Google or social media accounts. This way, they can purchase quickly, and you can get important information to use in target marketing.

6. Bonus reason: No preferred payment methods

Customers abandon their carts because the seller doesn’t offer their preferred payment method. Others do it because they don’t trust the payment methods offered.

Solution: It’s crucial that you offer various payment methods for your different customers. Your checkout should have the most common payment methods such as PayPal, MasterCard, Visa, and so on. This will ensure that your customers complete their transactions.


These are just some of the factors leading to cart abandonment and their solutions. There’s a lot more that you can research and learn about. What remains constant is that it’s crucial to know them so you can be able to prevent them. By lowering the rate of cart abandonment to your store, you can increase the chances of increasing your revenues.

How do you attract potential customers who have abandoned their carts back to your e-commerce store? Do you have any additional factors and solutions? Share with us in the comments.

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