Cart abandonment remains to be a key issue within e-commerce, but a new study sheds some positive light on how retailers can minimise consumer exits at checkout.  

Research by marketing solutions company Connexity on 1145 global consumers revealed that while over a third (35%) of potential buyers leave their online carts before a sale, over half (53%) will come back to the retailer’s site to proceed with the purchase later.

Being undecided about the retailer (16%) or the purchase itself (9%) were cited as common reasons for cart abandonment, while a further 15% of shoppers admit that they often don’t finish their transactions because they are not sure they actually ‘need’ the product.

Facing problems when using vouchers is another reason some leave their online baskets (11%), while another 11% of the study participants drop their shopping if the items they want are out of stock.

Interestingly, key drivers for cart abandonment varied between demographics. For a quarter of millennials it’s often cost that prevents them from pressing the ‘buy’ button, while the slightly older ‘Gen X’ tends to be put off by higher shipping costs (14%).

Meanwhile, for a large portion of ‘boomers’ (18%), the main consideration is whether or not they need the product.

Creating conversions

With Connexity drilling down on how companies can go some way to reducing abandonment rates, ‘good timing’ was cited as one of the main elements to take into account – the hours between 9-5pm is the period in which the majority of shoppers (57%) will complete a purchase.

Another incentive brands should consider are coupons, the research revealed. As many as 59% of users would follow through with their purchase if they had received an offer of a 20% discount.

Connexity also highlighted the importance of paying attention to the basics, such as technical glitches, which put customers off, and making sure the advertised items are in stock.

Shoppers often need that extra incentive, according to the study, whether that’s coupons, better targeting or simply more time to make a purchase decision. Knowing why a customer might leave their basket at the checkout opens up a wealth of opportunity for retailers to win abandoners back.

If you’re interested in this topic, online cart abandonment is the focus of a PMI: Europe session ‘Cart Abandonment: Taking Stock’ in July.