Shopping cart abandonment costs online merchants millions of dollars every day. However, one (slightly extended) weekend accounts for both the most online sales and the most abandoned carts. From November 28th through December 2nd of last year, also known as Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday, $5.293 billion of merchandise was taken through online shopping carts and purchased, shattering 2012’s record by 22%. However, on those days, a grand total of $19.29 billion was added to carts, meaning…
…approximately $13,996,600,000 was abandoned in shopping carts in just two days.
Now, here we stand, less than two months away from Thanksgiving 2014 and the purchase frenzy that follows. Are you prepared to do what it takes to reduce your cart abandonment rate and hold on to as much of that $14 billion as possible? The following four tips address some of the biggest mistakes made last year that cost ecommerce websites billions.
Reduce Cart Abandonment with Email ReMarketing.
Although Black Friday sales numbers are at an all-time high, so are cart abandonment rates. On Black Friday 2013, shopping cart abandonment rates averaged 71.06% — an 8.2% percent increase over 2012.
There are hundreds of studies and reports outlining ways to reduce cart abandonment, but if you’re looking to make changes in time for the holiday season, you’ll need something with an immediate impact that’s easy to implement.
One of the single most effective strategies is to set up an email remarketing campaign that targets new visitors who abandon their shopping cart. With millions of shoppers scraping the widest reaches of the internet for good deals, you’ll want to demand as much attention as possible — email remarketing gives you a precisely targeted opportunity to immediately recover abandoned carts.
Shockingly, studies suggest that as few as 21% of retailers sent out abandoned cart emails on Cyber Monday in 2013. Don’t be caught on the wrong side of this statistic come holiday season 2014.
To hit the ground running with proven email remarketing strategies and real-time delivery, contact an expert at UpSellit. We’ll design and develop your completely custom abandoned cart email campaign in a matter of days!
2. Remarket Quickly, Remarket Accurately.
A study from Mastercard found that 70% of brick-and-mortar consumer spending happens at the first two stores visited. Although shopping online is drastically different from visiting a physical storefront, the urgent nature of Black Friday sales has shoppers spending money quickly, even online. Shoppers are out to make a purchase that day.
What does this mean for online retailers? During the holiday shopping frenzy of late November, it’s wise to dispatch remarketing messages quicker than normal. It’s typically a good idea to leave some time for shoppers to return organically, but when shoppers are out to actively spend money, you should recover abandoned carts as fast as possible. Black Friday may be the best time to rethink your typical remarketing strategy.
3. Prepare for Mobile.
Last year’s Black Friday saw the biggest influx of mobile shoppers and the trend is likely to continue this year. An article from Yahoo! notes that “Mobile sales from Black Friday through Cyber Monday grew +63% [year-over-year], with one out of every four dollars spent coming via a mobile device.”
So, how can you enhance the mobile experience to get a bigger slice of $14 billion worth of abandoned carts? First and foremost, make sure that your mobile site is lightweight and ready to support a heavy volume of eager visitors. That same Yahoo! article states that during “peak Black Friday periods, mobile response times averaged around 8 seconds.” This amount of load-time is unacceptable among shoppers who, according to a study from Akamai, aren’t willing to wait more than three seconds for retail sites to load. On Black Friday, customers are looking to get deals while they last; if your store cuts into shopping time with load delays, expect users to drop off quickly.
According to our research, the number-one driver of cart abandonment is comparison shopping, accounting for 30.9% of shopping cart abandons. According to a 2013 comScore report, 46% of shoppers say they are less likely to comparison shop when using a mobile app. Although you may not have time between now and November to create and launch a customized app for your store, what this statistic does is stress the importance of creating an engrossing experience. You need to do what you can to draw in and keep users to reduce cart abandonment, especially within the growing mobile segment.
4. Brace Yourself.
Looking at the sales numbers, it’s easy to see that Black Friday is a huge day for online merchants, but dollar signs don’t always tell the tale. On Friday alone, 66.1 million Americans visited online retail sites, according to comScore.
You need to be ready to handle a significant portion of those millions of Americans. Last year’s Holiday Weekend shopping peaked twice — once at 9AM and once at 5PM PST. Even with such a predictable swell in visitors, the past few years have been marred by some embarrassing and frustrating shortcomings.
Across Thanksgiving and the following weekend, merchandise was added to the cart at an average rate of $45,653 per second. To say that site downtime is costly is a massive understatement in this case. Don’t leave carts abandoned due to a faulty website. On the most valuable days of the year, the expression “time is money” applies more than ever. Buy yourself as much time as possible with a solid, secure website.
Although shopping cart abandonment takes on an amplified meaning during the most lucrative shopping days of the year, many of the methods for combating it remain the same. By taking a focused look at the mistakes of previous years, preparing your website for a flood of users, and keeping your mind tuned to cart abandonment best practices, your company will weather the storm of Black Friday. If all goes according to plan, you’ll come out a little richer, too.
For more information about how to reduce cart abandonment and make the most out of your holiday traffic, contact the abandonment experts at UpSellit!
Written by Bryan Gudmundson