10 Reasons for cart abandonment

According to research, over 50% of customers abandon the shopping cart before completing the purchases - and therefore before paying - making the checkout the most delicate process for an e-commerce.


Maija Rinneheimo

Commerce Advisor, COO

According to research (source: Baymard, Tivi, Paytrail), over 50% of customers abandon the shopping cart before completing the purchases - and therefore before paying - making the checkout the most delicate process for e-commerce.

The reasons for abandoning the shopping cart are various, but in this blog post, we are going to share the 10 most important ones.

Source: https://baymard.com/lists/cart-abandonment-rate

1. The price including delivery costs is too high

49% of potential customers start a check out process for an online order but drop out of the process before completing the purchase because the shipping costs and other possible additional costs, such as taxes, are too high. Delivery costs significantly influence the purchase decision and one-third of consumers expect delivery to be free. When weighing alternatives, the importance of delivery costs is therefore essential.

2. Compulsory registration

According to a study, 24% of consumers quit shopping carts because they do not want to register to complete the shopping process.

Establishing a relationship with a webstore and a brand should be voluntary. Moreover, customers´ time is precious and adding extra mandatory steps slows down the buying process.

3. Delivery is too slow

19% of buyers don't follow through with a purchase due to slow deliveries. Making sure that the logistics of the store are in order and that you offer fast enough delivery with a wide range of delivery options, can play a big role.

Modern online stores favour a multi-channel service model, covering various delivery options: at home or at a pick-up point, such as physical shops and parcel lockers. It is therefore advisable to have more than one delivery partner for your webstore, ensuring a better supply´s security.

4. Too long or complicated checkout

18% of customers abandon a Shopping Cart if the checkout phase is too long or complicated. When optimizing the cash flow, only the most important information should be left on the form. Based on research, the optimal checkout form contains 7-8 fields.

5. The online store is unreliable

17% of buyers abandon the shopping cart purely out of unreliability. A webstore should inspire trust, for example, by looking neat and consistent in its design, but also by providing comprehensive product information, reputable and well-known logistics and payment service partners, as well as up-to-date and easy-to-find order and delivery terms. Also, make sure that the buyer can easily find the contact information, business ID and privacy statement of the online retailer.

6. The total cost of the order cannot be calculated

Cart abandonment is higher - 17% on average - on those webstores where the price of delivery costs or other expenses is only reported at the end of the purchase process. To prevent this turnout, all costs associated with the purchase and delivery should be communicated clearly and comprehensively well in advance - for example on the product´s page or in the shopping cart preview.

7. Technical problems

12% of customers don't complete a purchase due to technical problems. Mobile users in particular are rapidly rejecting technically problematic e-commerce and turning to a competitor. 

It is extremely important to make sure that the checkout process runs smoothly and that the system doesn't fail or the consequences backlash onto the trust of the website and ultimately the loyalty towards your brand.

For these reasons, it is worth ensuring that there is enough server space, the store loads product images fast enough, and adding products to the shopping cart is effortless. If the store is technically rigid, slow or, for example, a link does not work, the customer has probably already had time to open a competing online store on another tab.

8. Poor return options

Online shoppers assume and expect that every modern webstore allows free and smooth return policies and research shows that this expectation is especially emphasized for clothing webstores. 

With a clear return process, you can maximize sales online and engage customers to your brand and webshop. Moreover, make sure that the return policy can be easily found and accessed at every step of the shopping experience.

9. Not enough payment options

According to the research, 7% of customers left the purchase process because they could not find the payment method they wanted. On mobile, it is especially important that the payment can happen on the same page or app.

Note that, while the online payment is growing rapidly, bill and credit card payments must still be available.

10. Credit card declined

This reason is pretty obvious and if the bank account is empty or the card is out of date the purchase is naturally and quite unfortunately impossible to complete. In this case, you can only keep your fingers crossed and wait for the customer to return to the online store again on their next payday.

Pictures source: https://ls.graphics/illustrations


In addition to these 10 most common reasons, there are many other causes for cart abandonment. If, as an online retailer, you are not completely sure what your online store purchasing barriers are, we are happy to help you identify the biggest pain points. For example, we offer user experience focused webstore audits. An e-commerce UX audit is a comprehensive analysis of the webstore and its features, where the goal is to identify webstore pain points and low-hanging fruits that maximize return on investment. Contact us to discuss more.

Maija Rinneheimo

Business Development Director

+358 50 430 1944