Shopping Cart Abandonment and Conversions

Shopping cart abandonment is a huge challenge for online merchants. eTailers are constantly struggling to understand how they compare to other eTailers and the reasons of cart abandonment so that they can improve their conversions.
Yesterday I came across some interesting survey data that will help shed some light on the average abandonment rates, conversion rate and the main reasons for cart abandonment.

Industry averages

The following charts are from MarketLive Performance Index Volume 4

Q1 2008

Note: “1-and-out” is commonly referred as “Bounce Rate”. I also conducted a survey on Bounce Rates, you can find the results at

Reasons for Cart Abandonment

A study conducted by Paypal and comscore showed the following reasons for cart abandonment

Chart Source:

  • 43 percent of consumers didn’t pay for items in their shopping carts because shipping charges were too high
  • 36 percent of purchasers didn’t pay for items because they felt the total cost of the purchase was more expensive than anticipated
  • 27 percent of shoppers didn’t pay for items because they wanted to comparison shop at other Web sites before making a purchase
  • 16 percent of consumers didn’t pay for items because they could not contact customer support to answer questions
  • 14 percent of shoppers didn’t pay for items because they forgot their usernames and passwords for their store accounts created with the merchants
  • More 20% shoppers didn’t complete purchases because their preferred payment option was not offered on the merchant’s Web site
  • 21 percent did not complete online purchases because their wallets were not easily accessible

You might also be interested in Targeting Cart Abandonment by Email

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2 Replies to “Shopping Cart Abandonment and Conversions”

  1. Good article, very interesting to see what the reasons were for customers leaving before completing a purchase. I tend to agree with the point about forgetting the store account/password, too many stores online request that you register an account before you make a purchase, which is a huge turnoff (for me, anyway), as I would rather have to input my information each time I purchase something, mainly for security reasons.

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