What can online retailers do to limit basket abandonment?

A recent study conducted  by Visa has revealed that 72% of UK online shoppers abandon their shopping basket on retailer websites and apps. Encountering a difficult or slow payment process and concerns over online security are key reasons for this high rate of basket abandonment.

Visa’s survey also unveiled that whilst 16-34 year olds are most likely to conduct an online purchase using a mobile device, they are also 10% more likely than the average consumer to abandon a purchase.

Commenting on the findings, Visa claims they demonstrate a ‘clear need for new, easy, secure ways to pay’.

Retail Consigliere’s solutions to this issue include:

  1. Make the process quick and smooth

With many companies now offering ‘one-click pay’ services, retailers should aim to make the order process as simple and fast as possible. Unnecessary steps can lead to abandoned purchases. Retailers should also consider offering as many different payment methods as possible – not accepting certain types of payment could lead to baskets being abandoned.

2. Establish consumer trust

With consumers becoming more cyber-security conscious, they will want to know they can trust the retailer with their personal information. Providing accredited security and payment protection logos on the payment page can help to ease these concerns.

3. Don’t conceal extra charges

Transparency in delivery costs and extra charges is key to not putting off a potential purchaser. Retailers should be up front and not conceal added costs until the end of the transaction.

4. Incentivise through discounts

Online consumers are attracted to bargains. Using basket abandonment reminder emails to show an item is now discounted could be the small step needed for the shopper to return and hit the ‘buy’ button.

5. Progress tracker

Let consumers know how far they have to go until an order is placed. Consumers don’t want pages of questions asking if they would like to join the mailing list, or order a gift card. These irritations can be mitigated by showing the consumer how close they are to placing their order.

6. Offer guest check out

Failing to offer a guest check out is a leading cause of shopping basket abandonment. Forcing consumers to create an account, verify an email address and log in is reason enough not to complete a purchase. The more obstacles you put in a consumer’s way, the more likely they are to abort the purchase.

7. Returns policy

As we’ve reported previously (see here), 67% of all consumers check the returns policy before they buy, so it’s important to have an easily accessible policy which gives the customer the confidence to buy, knowing they can change their mind with minimal or no cost and inconvenience. This is particularly the case when returning larger items, where consumers can be faced with expensive collection charges which are often worth as much, if not more than the item itself.

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