Abandoned Shopping Cart: Common Scenarios & Tips

Abandoned Shopping Cart: Common Scenarios & Tips

January 10, 2017

As a merchant, you’d like to get as many visitors as possible to your store and to achieve this you put expensive search engine and social media experts to work as well as that you spend a lot of money on online advertising. Such choices are logical because search engine optimization is ‘the key’ and social media is ‘extremely hot’. But investing in attracting visitors to your store without looking at why they leave that same store is an error. Especially since research has shown that approx. 80% of your company’s future revenue will come from about 20% of your existing customers. Therefore in this article, the abandoned shopping cart is discussed.

The Abandoned Shopping Cart

You put everything in order to get consumers to your store. But do you also put the same effort in preventing visitors from leaving your shop? Often this is not the case and that is a shame. In 70% of the cases, customers leave the shop without having made a purchase. In addition, many merchants are feeling or thinking that “there is nothing they can do about that.” But there may be numerous reasons next to the ‘no interest’ why consumers leave the shop. For example, because something intervened or because consumers do not have enough information yet to make the purchase. But what can you do about that exactly? We like to give you three common scenarios accompanied by some practical tips!

The visitor is still in the orientation phase

Do I want to buy a PlayStation 4 or maybe the Wii? Or perhaps, the X-Box? Many consumers have such questions when they think about buying a particular product. Therefore they search online for reviews, talk with one another on forums and look at product videos on YouTube. In physical stores, consumers could also ask a staff member questions, but on the internet, this seems less obvious. Is it not possible for the online merchant to help his customer in his quest? Yes of course, here are some tips:

-Use live chat to translate the experience from the physical shop to the online world. Many merchants yet have to discover the live chat and its opportunities. When you apply the live chat in your store you can have real-life conversation with your consumers. Do the consumers have questions about a specific product? You can easily help him or her by chatting and discussing the questions. Helping consumers in real-time increases the chance that they implement the order at your webshop.

-Consumers may also have doubts between ordering a product from you or your competitor. Is the shipping rate from your competitor higher or lower than yours? And what about the delivery time? You can help consumers by creating a competition overview which helps them in their search.

The webshop does not look professional

It does not matter how much time and effort you put in search engine optimization or advertising if your store does not look professionally then it highly likely scares of many visitors. As with everything, you only have one chance for the first impression. A well-designed webshop not only consists of a beautiful design, but a professional UX designer also cares about the usability and navigation of the store. Unfortunately, too often there hasn’t been thought well enough about the design from the webshop. Before you spend money on all sorts of ways to get visitors to your store invest well in the design from the shop. If you do not do this then it will likely result in a higher bounce rate, which is a shame. Looking for tips? Here we give you two:

-You do not have a large budget? Then perhaps SaaS (software-as-a-service) is your solution. You then might not be the owner of the webshop, but for a fixed amount per month you rent an optimized web store. There are plenty of Saas providers, each with their own advantages, including SEOshop, CCVshop, Shop Pages, My Online Store, Shop and Trader Luondo.

-An important part of a well-designed web store is the speed with which the shop is opened within the browser. When the time takes too long then you run the risk that a customer leaves your shop. Even if they really like to make an order at your online store. The tip here is, therefore to optimize the speed of your web store.

The visitor scares during the checkout

Why do visitors leave the cart behind at your online store? The average person also wouldn’t do this when he or she is shopping at the supermarket. Leaving the shop may have many reasons, for example, because of unexpected delivery costs, the obligatory need to create an account or ambiguities, concerning the returns policy or terms used by the merchant. Despite that they did not at that time proceed to carry out a purchase, this does not mean they do not or will not do this at a later date. But how do you get the consumer back to the checkout?

Test continuously and improve the design of the checkout. Avoid additional costs (‘surprises’), show that you are reliable (e.g. by showing our Trustmark and consumer reviews) and make use of different payment options. When the checkout is as simple, clear and transparent as possible then you prevent that consumers leave your shop without paying.

Autofill data, for example on the basis of the postcode + house number. This can be done via the api.

Make use of the so-called “abandoned cart email. Research shows that nearly one-third (30%) of the clicks from this e-mail leads to a purchase. But what are the clever moments to send such mail?

– Half an hour after the cart has been abandoned. At this time you can send a customer service email with the question of whether everything went well and if there are any questions. This mail is opened by more than half of the customers.

– The second mail possibility is after 23 hours. In this mail you describe why you are correct in your online store should carry out the order. This mail is opened by an average of 40% of the customers.

– A week later, you can send an email with a clear call to action and a warning that otherwise the items will be removed from the cart. This mail is opened by an average of 28% of the customers. Leave it at this mail, otherwise, you will be seen by customers as intrusive.


A well-designed online store is more than an attractive design and marketing is more than bringing in consumers to your store. Do you want to achieve good results with your shop? Perform research into why visitors leave your store and process the results in your web store. Do you find out that a particular page on your web store has a high bounce rate because of the large images the page contains? Then optimize the images to reduce the loading time of the page. In this post, we have given you three common scenarios in which people tend to leave the shop as well as the ways to solve the problem. Do you have other tips for fellow merchants? Then let it be known by responding on this blog.


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