Last week we began defining the types of website abandonment beginning at the top of the online sales funnel. We established that the commonly used term, website abandonment, will be defined as the unique site visitors who arrive at a given website and abandon before converting. It was also distinguished product abandonment as the term used to describe unique site visitors who viewed one or more product or service pages before ultimately abandoning. These two abandonment rates are valuable metrics because they provide reliable insight into how top-level pages are performing.
Continuing down the conversion funnel, we will now define the cart abandonment rate. After a site visitor views a product or service, they can either bounce to a top-level page, abandon the website, or continue by adding the item to their shopping cart. Unique visitors who abandon the product page or bounce to a top-level web page and then abandon become part of the product abandonment metric. Unique site visitors who add the item to their shopping cart now become eligible for contributing to the cart abandonment rate.
The cart abandonment rate considers the website traffic that made a preliminary commitment to complete the conversion. These visitors came to your home or landing page and were convinced that your service or products were worth consideration. They then continued on to learn more about a specific product and were compelled to make a soft inquiry about a purchase. There are many reasons a visitor may add an item to their shopping cart, and while identifying these reasons is crucial to reducing your cart and website abandonment rate, they aren’t the topic of this week’s post.
The cart abandonment rate is one of the most valuable metrics for a marketer to analyze because visitors who arrive at this level of the conversion funnel are highly qualified shoppers. By adding an item to their cart, these site visitors have labeled themselves as being in the consideration or inquiry phase of the customer engagement cycle. Depending on the price point and typical sales cycle, marketers know they have a limited but varying amount of time to convince the shopper to continue to the purchase phase.
So, how does one calculate the cherished cart abandonment rate? Simply divide the total number of unique visitors who added an item to their shopping cart by the total number of unique conversions and subtract the quotient from one. For example, if you have 2,500 unique monthly visitors add an item to their shopping cart and 1,000 of these unique visitors complete a conversion, then you would use the equation: [1-(1,000/2,500)]. In this example your cart abandonment rate would be .6 or 60%.
Next week we will continue on down the conversion funnel and identify and define the last metric in the segmented set of website abandonment rates. If you have any questions so far about the website abandonment rate, product abandonment rate or cart abandonment rate, please don’t hesitate to write us at firstname.lastname@example.org or to visit www.upsellit.com and request an abandonment consultation.