Breaking Down Cart Abandonment Part III: Converting Abandoners to Customers


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In the first two parts of this series, we briefly covered the “who” and the “why” of shopping cart abandonment. In this blog post, we’ll talk about what areas you should focus your efforts that will help convert abandoners into customers.

What can be done to convert abandoners into customers?

Infographic: What can be done to convert abandoners into customers?

In the typical eCommerce conversion funnel, the shopper starts on the landing page and then moves on to the product page, adds the product to the shopping cart and then proceeds to checkout. The first step in converting abandoners into customers, then, is understanding how shoppers arrive at the shopping cart.

In our research, email remains the dominant force in getting shoppers to ecommerce sites. Overall, we found that traffic arriving at the shopping cart breaks down into the following categories:

  • 58% via email
  • 17.9% via direct URL entry
  • 10.3% via search
  • 4.8% via SEM
  • 4.3% via link
  • 4.3% via social media
  • 1.7% via display advertising

We also researched conversion percentages of the different methods by which shoppers arrive at the shopping cart. In other words, for any given method, how well did it sell? Just take look at these conversion rates:

  • 67.7% for email
  • 23.6% for direct URL entry
  • 1.65% for search
  • 2.11% for social media
  • 1.75% for link
  • 0.88% for SEM
  • 0.53% for display advertising

The next step in converting abandoners into customers is to capture the email addresses of all site visitors and use those email addresses to convert customers. After all, only 3% of visitors will buy on any site visit – 97% don’t. But a returning customer is nine times more likely to buy compared with a new visitor. Email can be used to nudge abandoners to return.

Key take away: email remains an eCommerce staple. The further a visitor progresses down the funnel, the more likely that the eventual conversion will come following a click from an email. Thus, the first steps towards converting abandoners into customers is capturing emails in order to keep the customer connected with your brand and product.

In the next blog series, I’ll discuss how to understand online buyer behavior and thereby optimize your eCommerce efforts.

Can’t wait to find out more? Download our free eBook on The Science of Shopping Cart Abandonment.

You can also check out our full infographic posted on Multichannel Merchant.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Charles Nicholls
Charles Nicholls is a social commerce expert and board advisor to several e-commerce startups. He founded SeeWhy, a real-time personalization and machine learning platform, which was sold to SAP. Serving as SVP of product, he built SAP Upscale Commerce, an e-commerce platform for direct-to-consumer brands and the mid-market. Today, Charles serves as chief strategy officer for SimplicityDX, a commerce experience company. He has worked on strategy and projects for leading ecommerce companies worldwide, including Amazon, eBay, Google and many others.


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