9 Techniques To Curb Heartbreaking Cart Abandonment

add to cart and then abandon the order later is very heart breaking for ecommerce business.


Selling online isn’t for the fainted heart. Beyond storefront problems, back office glitches take even more time and effort to resolve as more customers Add to Cart only to abandon the order later. How, then, can a wishlist turn into a buy? Many retailers describe the experience as false hope for empty promises.

Don’t throw in the towel just yet — there are 9 ways to beat the basket!


Despite the Add to Wishlist option, more and more customers are clicking Add to Cart while not actually buying the product. Surprisingly to many, it has become the most heartbreaking problem that eCommerce retailers encounter on a daily basis. No matter how enticing or promising the promotion, a lot of times, it just isn’t good enough for the customer. What, then, is the trick to committed purchases?

Think you’re the only retailer experiencing this problem? You’re not! Though invented since the 1800s, the term Wishlist gained popularity around the same time eCommerce made its debut in the late 1900s. As it became such a problem very early on, the Add to Wishlist button was created to make the option available for customers and avoid confusing the system. Yet, nearly 70% of carts with selected products still end up an orphan in limbo today. Many reasons exist to explain the cold feet drop and run. Complicated payment process, extra charge out of nowhere, obscure shipping fee and dodgy return-refund policy all make sense.


With​ such a despicable rate of cart abandonment well over two thirds, don’t throw in the towel just yet. Let’s take a look at 9 tools readily available to turn favorable tides for your business.

1. Email notification

Notifying customers that have carts pending checkout via email is a fantastic way to let them know that the retail shop is standing by for commitment to expedite the order. The SOP (standard operating procedure) is to send the first notification within 24 hours after the customer leaves the website. The second notification is sent in the next 72 hours to ascertain if the customer has or will return to view the product again, or not. Should there be no response, a special promotion can be offered to the customer for the particular item. In either event, it’s important that the link to the checkout page corresponding to the cart the customer previously selected must be provided, reflecting the offered promotion as well, accordingly.

2. Pop-up assistance 

There’s no way around it, pop-up that blocks what you are currently viewing is annoying. Marketing experts, however, contend that it is necessary for reducing cart abandonment if it can appear when the customer is about to leave the website. Big name online retailers design pop-ups for the trading, payment and special offer page to act as a speedbump, a reminder or an opportunity to make special offers. For example, if there is a pop-up offering a one-time 10% discount to customers who are about to leave the website, it could encourage the purchase at that time. Such an offer, of course, won’t be available next time around.

3. Progress indicators 

As​ customers have a shorter attention span for online attractions than that of offline. Any given page has approx. 3 seconds or less to capture the viewers’ interest. Thus, progress indicators can be applied to extend the visit, e.g., on the payment page. “2 stages left. You’re almost done!” shows the customer’s progress through the payment process, i.e., the stage the customer has currently reached and what is left before completion. To the same effect as remaining seconds monitors at traffic lights, it’s also a transparent process that curbs anxiety and makes the customer feel that there is no hidden surprise waiting to waste their time. Thus, as two birds for one stone, it’s a perk for your professional appearance that boosts customer confidence in the website, as well. 

4. Chatbot

Compared to offline, Chatbot is like a store employee that walks around to help customers however early the risers are up to do their chores and whatever they might turn out to be. Having a live chatbot on the website can curb cart abandonment by answering customer questions 24-7, creating a good experience for customers to shop with your website. 

5. Guest or login 

One shoot in the foot that prevents a customer from making a purchase is the web’s login and account requirement. To make a purchase, a customer needs to create an account and go through the verification process in order to proceed, often having to submit numerous types of personal identification and related information in the process. Given privacy policy and third party disclaimer, not too many customers give out personal information willingly. Understandably, many would decide to seek business elsewhere that such a lengthy process is not required. If they purchase as a guest, however, without having to create an account, they should be more willing to commit the purchase. On the other hand, customers that create an account and willing to have their data disclosed for marketing purposes can become eligible for special privileges and promotions. Nothing is forced, only what the customer wants to do. 

6. Visible Carts 

Given previous notifications via email, upon returning to the website again or navigating away from the checkout page, the customer can see the cart icon visible at the top corner or other visible areas as reassurance that the selected products remain in the cart. The cart could be displayed as a cart with a number that reflects the total items in it.  This grants customers the convenience of not having to pay right away and the ability to revisit the website later to finish the transaction without having to find and select the products or promotions all over again. All they need to do is proceed to checkout for payment. 

7. Remarketing 

Let’s face it, no matter how well designed or how good the product or promotion, some customers will never be won over. This particular target group thus can use a little help from Remarketing. Going through similar channels with email notifications, the slight difference being adverts are promoted through search engines or other social media mediums in lieu. This technique also reminds surfing customers that their cart is pending for a limited time and to revisit to complete the transaction. One word of precaution, as with all pop-ups, one reminder too often can have a reverse effect, causing annoyance and abandonment altogether.

8. Shipping variety

Dodgy shipping is probably the biggest customer dismissal, let alone shipping fees that exceed the product price altogether. Attractive shipping options, to the opposite effect, is a wonderful eCommerce tool that can attract the customer initially as well as expedite final decisions to commit the purchase. To do so however, significant supply chain investment is inevitable, as well. Generally, 3 types of shipping encourage purchase; the cheapest, the fastest and the best, all of which customers will choose for themselves, according to convenience.

9. Payment options

Finally, having a variety of payment options for customers to choose from, e.g., internet banking (banking apps – popular), e-wallet, credit and points, debit, payment apps, or cash at destination will cater to the customer’s method of choice and allow them the purchase as well as facilitate decision making.

All being considered, neither of the 9 techniques guarantee enticing the customer nor end cart abandonment. It always starts from the basics, i.e., understanding customer needs and behavior, quality products and services, and a professional user-friendly website or App, all the way to solving customer problems that exist. 

Try to adjust, see how it works and let’s share our findings!

Compiled by BLOG.SCGLogistics

References and photos easyship.com, pixabay.com

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