12 Proven Ways to Optimize E-commerce Checkout and Return Lost Sales

AMZ Seller Financing   •   April 29, 2019

Optimize E-commerce Checkout

You’ve spent a great deal of effort developing your e-commerce store and sourcing unique and valuable products that your customers would love. Yet, you’ve noticed that the majority of your potential customers fill up their online shopping carts, but abandon them before actually making a purchase.

You’re far from being the only person with such a problem. In case, data shows that nearly 70% of abandoned cart rate, which equates to roughly $260 billion of potential sales lost.

While this may be a rather discouraging number, think about it this way. Your marketing efforts have been able to successfully attract your potential buyers to your e-commerce store. And your products have piqued your interest enough for them to place your products in their shopping carts.

This means that now you only need to fine-tune your e-commerce store so that you don’t lose all these potential sales.

There are several reasons to high abandoned cart rate that may cause your buyers to leave. Once you’ve identified what yours are, you can start applying strategies to return your sales.

12 Strategies You Can Use to Optimize E-commerce Checkout

1. No Surprises. Eliminate Hidden Costs

Do you know why many physical stores intentionally hide their pricing tags? They intend to make you fall in love with the product first and make an emotional decision.

Don’t treat your shipping costs like that. No one likes surprise hidden costs. Especially when they cannot find or calculate them. As a matter of fact, that can raise your abandoned cart rate.

Instead, make sure that you either offer a flat shipping rate or give options. Regardless of what you choose, make sure that you clearly display shipping information on your site and, more importantly, make sure your customers can easily locate it.

2. Offer Free or Discounted Shipping

While free shipping may not always be possible, it can greatly reduce abandoned cart rate. There are a few proven strategies in which you can do that.

Firstly, you can offer free shipping for registered customers only. This would encourage potential buyers to leave their email with you which you can later use to send them information on things such as new collection, discounts, or promotions.

Secondly, you can offer a free shipping option when shoppers reach a certain total pricing threshold. For instance, you can offer free shipping for all orders over $75. This may encourage buyers to add more items to their cart in order to get the free shipping option.

Finally, you can factor the shipping expenses into your product price. However, this approach will generally only for larger or more valuable items. If you offer products such as school supplies, including the shipping cost into their price may increase it in a way that does not make your product desirable to the client.

3. Make Checkout Process Fast and Easy

Studies show that a lengthy checkout process deters your customers from finalizing their purchase. Therefore, make it straightforward and lightning speed. Do not ask for more information than needed, and preferably, make your checkout a single page.

If you do, however, opt for a multiple-page checkout, display progress rate. Ensure that your customers know how many steps they need to take and how many they still have left.

4. Keep Your Cart in Clear View

A simple yet effective technique to reduce abandoned cart rate is making sure that your cart and checkout are easy to see and find. The longer buyers will need to look for them, the higher their chances of leaving their carts.

One of the best places for that is the main navigation menu. Since that’s where most e-commerce stores display your carts, that’s where your customers will most likely be looking for your cart too.

5. Allow Guest Checkout

Many buyers complain about the need to create an account in order to be able to make a purchase. While it is in your favor for them to create an account because that allows you to collect heir emails and use them for email marketing, enabling guest checkout will increase your chances of making a sale.

Yet, you know that returning customers are more likely to buy from you and spend more. How do you get their emails?

There are options. You can either allow them an option to easily create an account with a single button (but make sure that’s optional and at the end of the checkout). Or you can offer incentives such as free shipping or discounts for registered users.

6. Use Exit-Intent Popups

Installing exit-intent pupups can be a great way of optimizing your checkout. It will automatically detect when users are intending to leave your site and will send a popup message. To maximize your chances of keeping them from leaving, you offer a discount.

Keep in mind though that they may not always work, so don’t rely on exit intent popups as your only strategy to reduce abandoned cart rate. Frequently, antivirus or browser software may

7. Save the Cart

Many users prefer to do research compare a few stores before they opt for purchase. While you cannot guarantee that they will come back to your store, you can make sure that you don’t make things harder for them.

Enable the option on saving the cart or adding items to a wishlist. That will allow your visitors to easily locate the items they had selected and can reduce your abandoned cart rate.

8. Use Urgency or Scarcity

Sometimes your potential buyers just need an extra push to make a purchase. In such a case, creating a sense of urgency or scarcity can help. You can display how many items of the product that they are interested are left in stock or use a countdown timer for a specific offer.

9. Send Abandonment Cart Emails

Another effective strategy to get your potential buyers to return is sending them abandoned cart emails. An effectively written abandoned cart email sequence can make sure that your customers return. To entice them even more, you can offer incentives much as coupons or discount codes.

10. Use Mobile Friendly Design

An increasing number of online buyers are using their smartphones to shop online. Ensure that your site is mobile friendly and shopping through it online is as easy as possible.

11. Make Sure Your Store Is Secure (and Display Security Badges)

Purchase an SSL certificate for your e-commerce store that encrypts and makes your site secure. Alternatively, you can invest in security badges such as Norton and MacAfee.

12. Build Trust

And finally, invest time and effort in building your brand and establishing a trustworthy relationship with your clients. Set up a blog, develop your social media accounts, and engage with your audience through them. If you do not have the time to do this yourself, you can hire a team or contract freelance professionals to do that for you.

The nature of the content that you can share will depend on the type of products that you sell. However, some options include tutorials, industry news, tips, infographics, and more.

While this may require effort or finances from you, it will develop trust in your brand over time and that can significantly increase your sales.

Have you tried any of these checkout optimization techniques? How did they work for you?

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