Magento – How To Improve Shopping Cart Abandonment Ratio
One of the most important aspects of owning an e-commerce website is understanding metrics and how they relate to the overall profitability of your website. One of the great things about Magento is that you can simplify the process of displaying products and take orders automatically without having to have a technical background or invest a lot of money when launching a website.
Unfortunately, many web site owners are satisfied with getting their website up and pay little or no attention to one of the most critical metrics a web site owner can analyze; shopping cart abandonment. There are many reasons people leave your shopping cart or checkout page and I plan to show you a few reasons they will leave and how you can stop this from happening.
Shipping And Handling
One of the easiest things to get wrong is the shipping and handling. Magento is loaded with modules that allow you to enter your UPS or Fedex information and calculate rates dynamically based on ones zip code. The problem, though, is you have to make sure you are properly configuring your shipping module to detect weight, quantity and potential ‘rules’ that you may want to have followed.
For example, let’s say you are selling food and want only certain items to have free shipping or the first 25 lbs of items are shipped free with the standard rates applying for the extra items that bring the weight total past 25 lbs. How would your shipping module know how to react? The odds are, it won’t know how to react and it can cost you sales because your UPS or Fedex module may not allow you to have the flexibility you want to offer special deals.
Another concern is the one issue that will allow customers to feel motivated to abandon your shopping cart and that a shipping rate they view to be unfair. For instance, what if your module makes a simple mistake that you are not aware of and customers feel they are getting a bad deal on the shipping or handling rate? They will leave and you will not know why.
This is why it is important to not only be in control of knowing what type of ‘rules’ you want to offer your customers, to entice them to take advantage of special offers, which will increase your sales but to also be in control of all rates that appear at all times. To do this you need to use something advanced like the Product Matrix shipping module from Web Shop Apps.
Their module allows you to create unique rules for special offers as well as customize the entire shipping and handling experience so you are fully aware, at all times, of what a customer will view when their quote is calculated. Having full control of this information will reduce checkout abandonment issues dramatically so long as other variables are not conspiring against you. Which leads us to the second variable to consider: One Step Checkout
Mastering The One Step Checkout Process
While Magento includes a ‘one step checkout’ it really is nothing more than a simple page that offers you 4-6 steps to complete, all on one page, so you can process your order. While it is convenient for customers to not have to click ‘continue’ on multiple pages, they still have to take the action to click on the page 4-6 times in an effort to complete an order. This is why we recommend considering Go Mage’s One Step Checkout solution.
With their one step checkout module, your customers will view one page, without having to click 4-6 different actions, and will be able to have everything from shipping address, billing address, shipping rates, order form and order summary all visible in one screen without having to do anything but complete their purchase. This is a brilliant system that offers flexibility and works well with 3rd party software.
We are using this in the development of one project and highly recommend it. With all of that said, there is a 3rd reason some people may be tempted to leave your shopping cart; lack of promotional coupon functionality.
Using Multiple Coupons To Your Advantage
Imagine you have a discount on one product group where if they place a purchase and enter a special coupon they get 10% off. Sounds like a great idea for the holiday season, right? Well, what if you wanted to offer them another coupon for a second product type? That sounds even better, doesn’t it? Unfortunately, with Magento, this is not possible out of the box. The good news, though, is that there is a solution and we have tested it. It’s the Multiple Coupon Module from Amasty.
This allows you to work with the Magento ‘shopping cart rules’ and create coupons that perform certain tasks such as offer 10% off one product type and give a free product away when another product type is purchased. You can place advertisements with multiple coupons and confidently advertise to your audience that they can use multiple coupons in one checkout process, instead of having to place multiple orders so they can use one coupon at a time. The inability to offer this may cost you customers who would prefer to go to a competitor who offers this feature.
While there will not be as many checkout page abandonment issues as there will be with a complicated checkout page, or poor shipping and handling display, it is likely that if you add multiple coupon flexibility you will only make the shopping process more enjoyable for people and they will be more likely to return to you in the future.
While there may be other solutions you may feel more comfortable with, I wanted to present these three options to you in case you were not aware of them. Your business may not need all three of these solutions but I think most web site owners can agree that, when it comes to sales, it is in ones best interest to do everything they can to reduce the ratio of abandoned customers and increase the opportunity to get people not only excited about doing business with you but making it a whole lot easier.