Article

Graham Charlton
Graham Charlton 23 August 2017
Categories Ecommerce, Mobile, Technology

Which industries have the highest cart abandonment rates?

The average cart abandonment rate for Q2 2017 is almost 77% but this varies a lot between different sectors. So why is there such a difference between industries?

What is cart abandonment? 

First of all, let's briefly explain cart (or basket) abandonment. Cart abandonment refers to the number of visitors to a retailer's site that add items to their cart but don't go on to complete a purchase. 

There are many possible reasons for abandoning carts - some shoppers are just browsing and not ready to purchase, while others may abandon because of problems they experienced during checkout, confusing forms for example. 

Our latest Remarketing Report shows the overall abandonment rate (76.9%) while breaking it down between various sectors. 

Fashion and gaming sites have below-average abandonment rates, while finance and travel sites have the highest rates. 

Abandonment_Rates_by_Industry_Q2-(1).png

Why the disparity between fashion and finance abandonment rates? 

First of all, it's important to note that there are differences between 'good' and 'bad' sites. Some financial sites enjoy abandonment rates which are closer to the retail average for example, while not all fashion retailers have low rates. 

Site design and user experience can make a lot of difference. If a website is well-optimised for mobile users and its easy for people to checkout, then this will reduce abandonment rates. 

Generally speaking, fashion retailers have improve a lot since the early days of online retail, and are more digitally mature, while the finance sector has been slower to adopt to digital.

Of course, there are exceptions. Challenger banks like Monzo have been very innovative, building UX into their organisations and giving established rivals something to worry about. 

However, the biggest factor of all is the research and purchase process between the sectors. It just takes longer to research and make a purchase on a finance site. 

Much of this is down to forms. Having chosen a pair of jeans from a fashion site, entering address and payment details to complete the purchase is relatively quick and straight-forward.

By contrast, an application for home insurance can take ten minutes and requires users to fill in many different sections. It's harder work, and therefore users are more likely to abandon. 

A recent study by signicat looked at the reasons customers abandoned applications, and forms taking too long to complete or asking for too much information were the most common reasons for abandonment. 

This means a lot comes down to good form design. Forms can be as much about perception as anything. Two forms asking for the same information can be made to seem more time-consuming depending on the design choices made in presenting them. 

For example, shortcuts can be added where possible, and form fields clearly labelled so that customers are less likely to be confused. 

It's in areas like this where sites with higher abandonment rates can improve. 

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