One of the biggest challenges facing E-commerce today is shopping cart abandonment. This refers to a situation where a customer adds products to the shopping cart, but leaves the online store without completing the transaction. Research has shown that almost 90 percent of the people who begin the checkout process abandon their shopping carts without making a purchase. Some of the most common reasons for shopping cart abandonment are:

•    Cost of shipping
•    Unpreparedness to buy
•    High prices
•    Comparison shopping

Figuring out why your shopping carts are being abandoned will give you an idea of how you need to redesign your pages so as to lower the abandonment rate. Based on the above reasons for shopping cart abandonment, here are some tips which can help you optimize conversion rates on your ecommerce sites.

Be Clear on Shipping Costs
Ecommerce store owners need to be clear about shipping and other additional costs which will be included in the final checkout price. The best way of doing this is by adding a shipping calculator in the ‘view cart’ page. You could also consider including special offers on this page so as to motivate customers to complete the checkout process. For instance, you could offer free shipping for orders worth over $100.  Such incentives will enhance your chances of making a sale.

Offer a ‘save cart’ Option
When a customer adds a product to the shopping cart, it does not necessarily imply that they are ready to buy it at that particular time. To retain such a customer, make sure your site has a ‘save cart’ option. This means that the customer can return whenever he is ready to buy, and find the cart with the products in it. Having a ‘save cart’ option also enables you to capture the customer’s email address, which can be used for follow-up later.  
Offer Competitive Prices
Customers usually compare prices across several online stores before making a decision. Therefore, having competitive prices is very vital for any ecommerce site. In addition, remember to offer promotional deals so as to encourage customers to buy from your site. For instance, you could give a one-time discount to anyone who joins your subscription list.
Display Trustmarks
Most consumers carry out extensive research online and compare their options before buying anything. One of the best ways of getting the attention of customers is by displaying recognized trustmarks on all the pages of your site. A trustmark refers to small logos or images which indicate that you have passed security tests or show that you are a member of a respected professional organization. Such trustmarks will give customers increased confidence in your business and increase the likelihood of them purchasing your products or services. Some of the common trustmark programs you need to consider displaying on your site include the Better Business Bureau (BBB), SSL security and Chamber of Commerce, among others.   

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Zubin Kutar is the founder of an internet marketing blog where accomplished writers and bloggers share their tips, strategies and stories. Click here to read some of his inspiring articles.


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