Lessons learned from Cyber Monday Shopping Cart Abandonment Patterns (part 2)


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In my last blog we covered how shopping cart abandonment rates vary in the run up to black Friday and Cyber Monday. The shopping cart abandonment rate is significantly higher than normal in the run-up to Black Friday. Once the majority of retailers rolled out their Black Friday and Cyber Monday promotional offers shopping cart abandonment drops dramatically.

From this we can observe mass changes in customer behaviour, as customers have become conditioned to wait for promotional offers. Comscore reports that Free Shipping has grown significantly in the last month, peaking at 55.1% of all online purchases, up significantly on last year (45.6%).

Customers behave differently

Unlike the wild swings in shopping cart abandonment rate of all visitors, when we segmented out identified visitors (registered, logged in, opted-in, or have previously logged in and/or purchased) we found that they are much less likely to change their behaviour over this period.

Connecting the dots, this suggests that anonymous visitors, who are most likely to be new customers, are inherently more new ‘deal oriented,’ and as a group these new customers deferred purchases pending the roll out of promotional offers.

This is a significant finding, which if validated, suggests three things:

(1) Customers behave differently from visitors: Existing customers and visitors that have registered on an ecommerce website are much less likely to be swayed by promotions than first time customers. Or it could be that they don’t need to research, relying instead on emailed offers from ecommerce sites they know to trigger their seasonal purchases.

(2) The importance of getting a registration is once again reinforced. Creating an account, or signing up for a newsletter shows a degree of brand interest, and gives you the ability to build familiarity and brand trust through email and social media marketing

(3) Reduce shopping cart abandonment: You should be able reduce your abandonment rate by getting a greater proportion of your traffic on your website to identify themselves through some form or opt-in / sign up / registration, and using this to market to them.

Lessons learned from Cyber Monday Shopping Cart Abandonment Patterns

As you are beginning to think about enhancement priorities for 2011, in the light of this we suggest considering the following:

  • Facebook Login integration: This is going to be really big in 2011 in ecommerce. It is a simple plug-in which enables your visitors to login to your site using their Facebook credentials. It’s so easy to use that three times more visitors will login using Facebook than would ever register on your website. Check how this works at www.scarpasa.com
  • Dust off your email newsletter: You might think that newsletters are so 1990’s, right? Wrong. Even if you’re marketing a global megabrand, a newsletter should be part of your arsenal. If you’re marketing a small brand, then this is an important way to ID site visitors and build brand trust. It may be hard to measure, but this trust is all important in reducing shopping cart abandonment.
  • Recognize the value in a sign up: Incentivized sign ups work very well. One of the best ways of increasing the proportion your visitors that are ID’d is to offer an incentive. Check out how www.womanwithin.com does it with a promotional sign up.

Have you observed this pattern of registered users behaving differently on your ecommerce sitte? How does this affect abandoned shopping carts? Let us know by writing a comment, we’d love you to share your experiences.

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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