People shop online because they want to save time and money. This seems very obvious. But for many retailers, applying this principle to eCommerce has been difficult.
Today we’ll be looking at 5 ways clumsy journeys to purchase are losing brands customers (and money) online.
1) Attack of the Phones
Stop whatever you’re doing and look around. How many people can you see looking at their smartphones, and how many are on their laptops? In 2015, mobile devices surpassed computersas the primary way people accessed the internet. In the years since, that trend has only intensified. As people begin to shop on their phones, you need to be mindful of the way their shopping habits change. More and more consumers have been browsing in what marketers have deemed “micro-sessions”, 2 minute or less chunks of time while they wait for a bus, go to the bathroom, or ride the subway. While customers might not actually make a purchase in these brief pockets of time, they will decide what they want to buy, and where they want to buy it from.
What does this mean to you? If you haven’t already, it’s time to create a great mobile shopping site. As a general rule, you should try to use a lot of visuals and limit the amount of text shoppers will need to read. A few more helpful rules of thumb are having a fixed navigation bar, a sticky “add to cart” function, and putting real photos of your product front and center! It’s also important to allow shoppers to add items to their carts from the main page of your website without steering them to item pages that may confuse and annoy them. Anything you can do to make the shopping experience easy and fun will help, and if you don’t know where to start, start with Adimo!
2) The Fast and the Frustrated
A person who is shopping on their phone during a minutes-long break in their workday is a person who wants instant gratification and is prone to distractions. And while your mobile shopping site has distracted them, the smallest delay or inconvenience will send them off in a different direction. A study by radware in 2014 found that a 2 second delay in load time resulted in cart abandonment rates of 87%, while regular abandonment rates stood at around 70%. The same study also concluded that 51% of American shoppers reported site slowness as the number one reason for abandoning purchases. Since abandoned carts cost retailers billions of dollars per year (the same radware study estimates that $3 billion were lost in the US in 2014 by slow load times!) we would advise you to immediately start testing your load times with tools like PageSpeed insights or WebPageTest.org.
3) 2 Fast, 2 Frustrated
Another primary cause of cart abandonment is the difficulty of checking out and providing billing information. Cart abandonment generally happens at the payment stage of shopping, coming when customers need to login or create accounts, provide billing addresses, or see shipping costs. While shipping costs are clearly related to price, a customer bailing out of the process at checkout is often caused by perceived hassles, inconveniences, and wastes of time. Amazon’s 1-click ordering, which stores and uses a customer’s previously entered information, seems vastly preferable to most consumers in terms of ease and reliability. If you can’t offer something similar to your consumers, they won’t be your customers for long!
4) Need for Speed
A Walker Sands study from last year found that 79% of shoppers would choose delivery by drone if it meant their packages would arrive within one hour. The same study concluded that “seamless shipping, delivery and returns have become more and more important to consumers, making them primary future drivers of e-commerce growth.” Time conscious consumers who shop on their phones place a premium on time and instant gratification. The ability to provide same-day shipping will certainly encourage consumers who have been skeptical about online shopping to start buying different types of products online. If you need a swimsuit for a weekend getaway, a chunk of cheese, or a new phone, you would have no interest in a product that will take 4-6 weeks to arrive. As Amazon is experimenting with 2 hour deliveries, you need to ask yourself if your logistics can compete. As Walker Sands notes, fulfillment has become a top priority for retailers, with 29% of total capital expenditures in 2016 going toward “solutions like transportation and logistics, delivery options, order management, inventory visibility and returns management.” It’s time to hit the nitro button on developing your capacity to give customers what they want, when they want it!
5) Don’t Take No for an Answer
While cart abandonment is clearly your nemesis as an online retailer, it is your friend in showing you who your potential customers are. You need to find software, algorithms and data that allow you to follow up with the customers who were oh-so-close to making a purchase. A study by Accenture found that ““When it comes to personalized online experiences, the most popular [factors] were website optimized by device (desktop, tablet, mobile) (64%) and promotional offers for items the customer is strongly considering (59%).” Technology allows you to find customers who almost bought an item, send them a personalized offer with a discount for that product, and create a loyal customer. If you don’t do this, someone else certainly will!
Go Forth and Prosper!
A report from Forrester found that “online sales in the United States are expected to reach $523 billion [by 2020], up 56% from $335 billion in 2015, and mobile devices are expected to be a key driver in that growth.” Money is pouring into eCommerce, and if you make the right moves, your business will grow exponentially. At Adimo our mission is making your brand as shoppable and convenient as anything on Amazon. Let us use these principles to push your brand into the future!