Top 3 Reasons for Shopping Cart Abandonment

Top 3 Reasons for Shopping Cart Abandonment

Imagine seeing a potential customer in real-time browsing through your site. Your hard work on social media & SEO enticed them to come visit your site, and after browsing through your products they find the perfect item and place it in their shopping cart. But in the end, after getting them so close to a purchase, they change their mind and abandon their cart.

(Insert sad trombone!)

Around 67% of shoppers who place items in carts don’t complete the checkout process, costing merchants $18 billion in lost revenues. Understanding why people leave your site with a full shopping cart will allow you to proactively combat this problem and get more customers through your funnel. In this post we’ll cover 3 of the most common reasons for abandoned shopping carts and what you can do to prevent them. Read on!

1. Shipping Related Issues

    • 44% of the shoppers abandoned the checkout process because shipping and handling costs were too high.
    • 22% of people left because the shipping and handling costs were posted too late.
    • With nearly 70% of shoppers abandoning carts because of shipping, it’s clearly a problem worth solving!


    • Lower your shipping rates, consider offering flat rate shipping, or remove your shipping costs all together. Look into minimum purchase orders that can qualify a customer for free shipping, thereby increasing revenue with the increase in purchases.
    • Once you’ve saved the lost carts, the increase in total products shipped should allow you to negotiate a better price with your preferred carrier, decreasing your costs.
    • Be upfront about your shipping policy. Publish your shipping policy and the associated costs on each product page. If you are charging for shipping, provide people with the total cost of their order before beginning the checkout process.

2. No Strong Call to Action

    • 41% of shoppers left items in their cart because they felt they were not ready to purchase.
    • 27% wanted to compare products & prices with other sites.
    • With the sheer amount of options and information available to shoppers they are much more likely to shop around and spend time researching the product before purchasing.


    • Create a sense of urgency to encourage the purchase right now. Rotate items that are on sale, emphasis limited quantities, and show the amount of time left before a discount ends.
    • Use weekly or daily events featuring a combination of items.
    • Using Granify you can create custom offers to persuade at-risk shoppers to buy before they leave your site. For example, if Granify detects checkout hesitation or price-shopping we will show the customer a targeted message with a high likelihood of resulting in a finished sale.

3. A Poorly Designed or Time-Consuming Checkout Process

    • 14% of shoppers abandoned because they didn’t want to register for the site.
    • 12% said the site was asking for too much information.
    • 11% felt the checkout process was too long or confusing.


    • Always give the shopper the option to checkout as a guest. Don’t force people to sign up to your site, instead, focus on providing a quality product and an experience (such as a discounts or a useful newsletter) that makes them want to sign up after receiving their order.
    • Only ask for essential information. Not only will this prevent people from feeling like you’re asking for too much, it will shorten and simplify the process at the same time. The fewer steps you introduce, the lower the friction shoppers feel checking out.
    • People are more likely to register during their second or third purchases, providing you with a wealth of information. Focus on making the sale and creating repeat customers first, collect data later.

Remember: it’s a Big, but Solvable Problem

A few small changes can keep customers from abandoning their cart on your site. If you can’t change your shipping policy, at least make it more transparent and visible. Create a reason for people to buy your product while they are still on your site.  Lastly, make sure that once they get to the checkout process, it’s clear sailing to the end. Abandoned carts will always be a problem online stores must face, but by understanding your shoppers and regularly making simple changes you can recover a large portion of the sales you should be making.

What have you done to successfully reduce abandoned carts? Let us know in the comments!


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