Defining Website Abandonment, Part 2

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website abandonmentAll too often marketers interchange the different terms associated with website abandonment. While they are all related and dependent on each other they are also very different and reveal unique insights into your website’s customer experience. There is some discussion out there about these granular types of abandonment, however there is not any continuity between marketers about the different types of site abandonment. In this week’s article we will begin with the top of the conversion funnel, and define the commonly used term website abandonment and the rarely discussed, yet equally important metric, product abandonment rate.

Website abandonment is the most comprehensive term in the set, and provides marketers with an overview of their website’s performance. Website abandonment will be used and defined exactly as it sounds; the difference between the number of unique visitors who visit your website and the number of conversions made. In order to calculate your website abandonment rate, you would need to gather a specific data set, typically 30 days, and identify the number of unique site visits, and the total conversions completed. You would then divide the total conversions by the total unique visitors. To calculate your website abandonment rate as a percentage, you would then subtract this fraction from 1.

For example, if you have 10,000 monthly unique visitors and 1,000 conversions per month, you would use the equation: [1-(1,000/10,000)]. In this scenario, your website abandonment rate is .9 or 90%.

The next level down your conversion funnel would be your product or service pages. These pages are among the most important on your site because they are often the last comprehensive description a potential customer sees before beginning the purchase process. In order to effectively optimize your product pages, you need to be able to identify your product abandonment rate. While this metric pertains to both products and services, for the ease of communication we will be describing this metric as the product abandonment rate.

The product abandonment rate can be difficult to calculate because it is dependent on page views. Unlike the website abandonment rate which relies on the total unique visitors, the product abandonment rate calculates how many unique visitors view a product or service page, yet ultimately abandon. This metric can be difficult to define because often times customers will view multiple product pages before converting or abandoning. To accurately calculate your product abandonment rate, you need to segment out all of your product or service pages and identify the total unique visitors to view a product page(s). This way, if a customer views multiple product pages, it won’t negatively affect the overall product abandonment rate.

Following the previous example, we had identified 10,000 monthly unique visitors, and 1,000 conversions per month. We would then identify the total number of unique visitors to view one or more product pages. In this example we’ll say that 5,000 visitors clicked through to view a product, so we would use the following equation: [1-(1,000/5,000)]. In this example, your product abandonment rate is .8 or 80%.

Next week we will continue down the conversion funnel and continue to define and describe each level of website abandonment. If you’re interested in learning more about your segmented abandonment rates and what you can do to instantly reduce these percentages, please click here to contact an UpSellit representative.

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