What is Shopping Cart Abandonment?

This term is primarily relevant to sites that monetize by selling physical goods or memberships. Shopping cart abandonment occurs when a visitor fails to complete the checkout process, meaning that the site owner misses out on potential revenue.

Though it is a remnant of brick-and-mortar retail outlets, the term “shopping cart” has also come to be associated with the non-physical location where online shoppers gather goods they intend to buy. Almost every site that allows the purchase of physical goods utilizes some variation of the “shopping cart” term:

Example of an Online Shopping Cart

Most studies indicate that shopping cart abandonment rates are extremely high, meaning that it is fairly common for online shoppers to take the first step towards completing a transaction but ultimately give up before the process is complete. There are a number of best practices that can be put in place to combat shopping cart abandonment and increase conversion rate, which ultimately leads to more revenue.

Based on a study by the Baymard Institute, the industry-wide shopping cart abandonment rate is approximately 68%.

Abandonment Solutions

Reducing shopping cart abandonment can result in a meaningful increase in revenue for sites that sell physical or digital products. There are a number of strategies that can be employed to do this, including:

  • “Remarketing” to known shoppers with targeted ads
  • Offering coupons
  • Streamlining checkout process

There are a number of ways to implement each of the above, especially the third bullet point. Often, the easiest way to reduce shopping cart abandonment involves eliminating frustrations and roadblocks from the actual checkout process. This can include:

  • Reducing the number of fields required
  • Reducing the number of pageloads between item selection and payment processing
  • Maximize number of payment options (including PayPal, Bitcoin, and others)

Common reasons for shopping cart abandonment

There are many reasons why customers abandon their shopping carts. Here are some common reasons why it happens: 

  • Lack of trust

Many web users feel uncomfortable providing their credit card info online. Gain more trust by providing social proof through the page, build a strong brand, and providing return policy info can also help allay customer concerns. 

  • Complexity

Online shoppers will abandon the checkout process if they find it complex and time-consuming. Avoid this by making the checkout process as easy as possible.

  • Lack payment option

Customers often have a strong preference for how the would like to pay, and willing to complete a purchase if their preferred payment methods presented. You can solve this problem by offering the most popular and common payment methods. 

  • Price too high 

There are many businesses that offer the same product and service as we do. Web users often compare the product or service to get the best deals. You can offer them a special discount  to keep them from looking at any other deals elsewhere

  • High shipping cost

Many customers abandon their shopping cart when they find out how much their order costs with shipping. You can offer them free shipping promo

  • Technical problems

All technology is susceptible to technical issues. Make sure to monitor your analytics and do regular reviews on the process.

  • Browsing 

Many web users don’t complete their purchase process because they are just browsing and have low buying intent. You can offer them limited-time promo to create a sense of urgency so they will complete their purchase process immediately. 


What is shopping cart abandonment?

Shopping cart abandonment is a term to describe a visitor on a web page who leaves that page before completing the desired action.

How to calculate the shopping cart abandonment rate?

To calculate the rate of the shopping cart abandonment is by dividing the total number of completed purchases by the number of shopping carts created, then subtract the result from one and then multiply by 100 

Why Do Customers abandon their cart?

There are many reasons for customers abandoning their cart. Before you make any solution about the abandonment, it’s wise to check into your data or analytics to see the main cause of the abandonment.