Opinion: Don't just tell me I left the basket empty, ask why

I do quite a bit of online shopping. One thing that many sites have implemented, is an attempt to recapture your attention when you've added items to a shopping cart, and then abandoned the cart.

This is seen as a feature in many implementations of carts for online stores.

Manipulate them?

Given it's so common now, I've also found that many can be manipulated. For example, one clothing store that I like, will send me a reminder about my abandoned cart one day later. Often at that point, they'll make an additional offer, like free shipping.

But that's so predictable that every time I shop there, I put items in the cart, abandon them, and wait to see what deal is offered.

First lesson: Don't be predictable on this.

But why?

Now I'm sure that some purchasers are hesitant, and a simple reminder will get them to purchase.

But what many sites don't seem to "get" though, is that I will often have abandoned the cart for a reason. Something wasn't clear or something wasn't quite what I wanted.

I've noticed that none of the sites ever ask me why I've abandoned the cart. There is an enormous amount of value that they could learn if they just asked that question.

Instead, they annoy me, by continuing to send me reminders about my abandoned cart, without ever addressing my concern or hesitation.

Second lesson: Don't just pester people about abandoned carts. Ask they why or how you can help. You might be surprised by what you learn.



2 thoughts on “Opinion: Don't just tell me I left the basket empty, ask why”

  1. yep… My common reason to leave a cart: The shipping cost (or options) was not clear or obvious, so i'll put something in a cart, go through the check-out until it gets to the page where it shows the actual total cost with shipping, and then I'll make my decision whether I want to buy or dump the trolley.

    1. Exactly Bruce. And there's nothing on most sites where they'd find that out, unless they're trying to guess it from the point at which you abandoned it.

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