How to remedy the problem of basket abandonment

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With the vast amount of online visitors, e-retailers usually consider basket abandonment as one of those things. But why?

According to research from Adobe, 74% of desktop users abandon their baskets and leave a website without making a purchase, rising to 78% for tablet shoppers and a staggering 84% for mobile users. Many retailers simply accept this as the norm. However, if the online sphere was a physical shop on the high street, retailers would be more concerned about three quarters of potential customers walking out of the store without buying anything.

So how can you slash your basket abandonment rates and turn more visitors into customers? The answer could lie in your checkout process, as we explore:

Is less always more?

Many retailers assume that fewer steps in the checkout process means less effort from the customer and therefore delivers a greater experience. However, research has actually shown the opposite of this, with the most successful retailers having an average of 5.42 stages in the checkout process.

And it makes sense. Shortening your checkout process to two steps is fruitless if you’re going to present customers with lengthy, complex forms. Shorter, simpler forms that may result in multiple steps will make the checkout process more manageable for customers, reducing chances of confusion that could lead to basket abandonment.

Likewise, are you asking too much of your customers? For example, do you really need three contact numbers (home, mobile and work) for your customers? Consider eliminating some fields altogether or making them optional to give customers greater control over the information they share with your company.

Don’t ignore data

Of course, the only way you can truly know what checkout process will work for your target audience is by capturing customer behaviour data. Tools like Google Analytics are essential for retailers looking to establish the root cause of basket abandonment.

The data captured will show how a potential customer behaves after navigating away from the checkout. For example, are they leaving the checkout stages to visit the delivery information page? If so, you know that you need greater visibility around delivery options at the checkout stage.

With e-commerce rapidly growing as more of us shop online, it’s clear that it’s in a brand’s best interests to streamline their checkout process. This is especially important when you consider the growing competition between retailers to claim their market share. Sitting back and accepting basket abandonment as one of those things is no longer an option — brands must act now to increase their online sales.

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