Posts by: Jake Burgess

Reviewing Amazon’s Biggest Competitors Across Different Industries

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Amazon competitors | Yieldify

As the world’s leading eCommerce marketplace, Amazon faces harsh competition. Let’s look at four types of Amazon competitors giving it a run for its money.

Amazon, a titan in the business world, started as an online bookstore operating from a home garage. Within 25 years, it has become a global behemoth that offers products and services across myriad industries.

While mostly known as an eCommerce marketplace, Amazon is much more than that. The company offers over 175 different services, with its biggest markets being food, fashion, entertainment, web services, and on-demand services.

Amazon growth
Amazon growth chart (Source: Pitchbook)
❓ Who are Amazon’s biggest competitors?

Amazons’ main competitors globally are Alibaba, eBay, Walmart, JD.com, Flipkart, Rakuten, Etsy & more. Check out our competitor comparison chart below.

?? Who are Amazon’s competitors in the UK?

Some of the biggest players in the UK’s online retail market include Tesco, eBay, Esty, Asos, Argos, Play.com, Next, and John Lewis.

❓ What is the best alternative to Amazon?

The best alternatives to Amazon are Alibaba, eBay, Flipkart, JD.com. Different countries online retailers will are also good alternatives such as Walmart, BestBuy , Argos & John Lewis.

Amazon has positioned itself as the world’s largest online marketplace with over $280 billion net sales in 2019. Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, stated that its success was built on three customer value propositions: low prices, fast delivery, and extensive selection.

With a market share of almost 40% of US eCommerce sales, Amazon has been on an unstoppable run. However, even Amazon has strong competitors. While the company is likely responsible for a rise in customer expectations for eCommerce stores, the best thing you can do for your business is to learn from your competitors.

4 types of Amazon competitors in the eCommerce field

On top of its array of services, as an eCommerce platform Amazon sells almost everything imaginable. It’s not hard to see why they would have their fair share of fierce competitors.

In this blog post, we’ll explore 4 main types of Amazon competitors that operate in the eCommerce field, as well as look at individual brands and what contributes to their competitive advantage. (See the full comparison table below)

1. Online marketplaces

Online marketplaces have many different buyers and sellers trading through the same website. According to DigitalCommerce360, sales on marketplace sites accounted for more than half of global online sales in 2019.

Online marketplaces are convenient for sellers that don’t want to – or can’t – invest in their own platform. What’s more, shoppers prefer online marketplaces for repeat purchases and they may even start to take away first-time purchases from individual retailers and brands.

Consumers prefer online marketplaces, such as Amazon, for repeat purchases
Consumers prefer online marketplaces for repeat purchases (Data: Salesforce/Publicis)

In 2019, the top 100 marketplaces sold $2.03 trillion worth of merchandise, or 58% of global online retail sales. Even though most will have heard of the biggest ones such as Amazon, eBay, Alibaba, Google Express, or Etsy, there are hundreds of other options. Many of these large marketplaces remain quite niche, such as Zalando for fashion or AirBnb for tourism and lodgings.

Let’s look at two eCommerce marketplaces – Alibaba and eBay – that give Amazon a (slight) run for their money.

Alibaba

Alibaba is a Chinese eCommerce dragon that connects wholesalers to businesses around the world. Over the years they have expanded their services to include Taobao (a site similar to eBay), Tmall (a site similar to Amazon), and Aliexpress.

Unlike Amazon, which sells products directly or serves as an intermediary in the process while taking a cut of sales, Alibaba is the middleman between buyers and sellers. Alibaba’s business model has left them with hundreds of millions of users and a revenue of almost $72 billion.

While Alibaba is often called the ‘Amazon of China’, with the growth to back it up, it is still lagging in market share. Only time will tell whether the eCommerce world is big enough for both these giants.

Amazon revenue vs Alibaba, Ebay and Etsy
Amazon revenue vs Alibaba, Ebay and Etsy (Data: MacroTrends)

eBay

eBay is an online marketplace that enables buying and selling between businesses and individuals. According to eBay, there are over 170 million sellers on the site, which is reflected in their revenue of $10.8 billion in 2019.

eBay has positioned itself as one of Amazon’s top eCommerce competitors in the US. The platform is dwarfed by Amazon’s size and profitability, but it is still preferred by a majority of online sellers in the US.

Most popular online marketplaces in the United States
Most popular online marketplaces in the United States (Data: Statista)

2. Click and mortar retailers

The global eCommerce industry reached an astounding $25 trillion value in 2019. Even though there are more than 20 million online stores in the world, much of the growth can be attributed to Amazon.

However, when it comes to online retail, the revenue is more dispersed. Most of Amazon’s online retail competitors also have brick and mortar (hence the click and mortar) stores, which gives them an upper hand in the physical market.

Let’s take a look at two Amazon competitors – Walmart and Apple – that are a force to be reckoned with due.

Walmart

While Amazon is trumping Walmart in online sales, they lack in physical presence. Almost 90% of Americans live within 10 miles of a Walmart store. The company’s total revenue is almost twice that of Amazon’s at an astounding $523 billion.

Most of their profits come from their physical department stores, but they have started putting in the necessary work to position themselves as an eCommerce store as well. In the US, they hold a strong second place for the most popular online store. With 207% growth in its eCommerce customer base, Walmart may be giving Amazon a run for its money.

What’s more, on June 15, 2020 Walmart announced a partnership with Shopify. In a nutshell, the industry giant is adding 1,200 Shopify sellers to its online marketplace this year. The partnership focuses on adding small- and medium-sized U.S. businesses.

Top 10 U.S. retail sites ranked by unique visitors
Top 10 U.S. retail sites ranked by unique visitors (Data: eMarketer)

Apple

Amazon and Apple are a part of the Big Four tech companies whose value has exceeded $1 trillion. Apple was the first US company to surpass the $1 trillion mark.

Similar to Walmart, Apple’s success can mostly be attributed to brick and mortar stores, but also their premium branding. Coming in at $27 million net sales in 2019, Apple has proven that a brand that sells only a specific category of products can still compete with an online marketplace giant.

Top online electronics and media stores | Yieldify
Apple owns 10-15% of the Electronics & Media market in the U.S. (Data: EcommerceDB)

3. Social media marketplaces

Social media marketplaces are where eCommerce meets social platforms to create a seamless shopping experience. Almost 90% of shoppers claim that social media influences their purchase decisions. It’s no surprise, therefore, that social shopping is on the rise.

The shifting eCommerce landscape has pressured social media sites to modify how their platform interacts with potential shoppers. Most of the major social media platforms, such as Facebook (38.82%), Pinterest (2.13%), and Instagram (2.07%), have hopped on this bandwagon.

In 2019, Facebook listed Amazon as a competitor in the digital advertising space for the first time, marking a new era in eCommerce. In the last five years, all major social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest introduced the option of in-platform shopping, which has dramatically changed the eCommerce market.

Let’s take a look how Facebook and Pinterest compete with Amazon for customers’ attention.

Facebook Marketplace and Facebook Shops

Facebook’s online Marketplace launched in 2016 as a place where people could buy and sell in their local communities. It is used in 70 countries by 800 million people each month. These numbers aren’t surprising since Facebook is used by almost every other person on the planet.

Even though selling on the platform is free, Facebook has partnered with a number of eCommerce platforms including ChannelAdvisor, Shopify, and BigCommerce to ensure profit from smaller eCommerce vendors.

In 2020, Facebook launched a new feature that put it in direct competition with AmazonFacebook Shops. This venture is the most significant step Facebook has taken in eCommerce to date as it enables users to shop directly on the platform instead of simply redirecting them to other websites with ads. Many businesses are compelled by the idea that they can market and sell on a single platform, and Facebook may pose a significant threat to Amazon in the future.

Amazon competitor - Facebook Shops

Pinterest

The rivalry between Pinterest and Amazon began in earnest in 2018. With the introduction of Shopping Ads and Shoppable Pins, Pinterest enabled shoppers to make a purchase without ever leaving the social platform. The new feature was good news for shoppers and businesses alike, as it streamlined the shopping experience without charging a commission to the companies.

Pinterest has also adopted the business model of partnering with massive eCommerce platforms. With specific features targeting iPhone users and enabling a personalized shopping experience, Pinterest is considered to be one of Amazon’s growing online competitors.

4. Niche eCommerce vendors

Niche stores have managed to exploit unexplored market space which makes it possible for them to compete with giants such as Amazon. With very specific products and services, niche vendors can thrive by existing outside of oversaturated markets. They rely on a loyal customer base and the idea that customers would rather shop with a specialist company than a large marketplace.

It’s hard not to feel discouraged after reading about these eCommerce titans. How are smaller stores ever meant to compete? The simple answer is that they don’t need – not directly, at least. Small vendors should learn from Amazon and its online competitors. We’ve put together some of the key takeaways that eCommerce companies can start implementing straight away.

Amazons biggest competitors comparison table

Amazon competitors comparison table | Yieldify
Click on the image to download

How can niche brands compete with Amazon

1. Leverage branding

Simply put, successful branding and identity are what makes most products sell. While almost 77% of consumers don’t feel like they have relationships with brands, brand awareness remains crucial for success.

In a sea of products on Amazon, most aren’t branded. A niche eCommerce store, on the other hand, has the opportunity to tailor the experience to their target audience. Demonstrate your expertise and what you stand for through content, social media, and personalization!

2. Rely on customer data

Amazon’s competitive edge comes from knowing their customers inside-out. By collecting and analyzing data, they not only track what customers are buying but also predict what they might want to buy.

Data-driven marketing can help you do the same without investing millions of dollars as Amazon does. Understanding your customers can help you improve customer acquisition, retention, and conversion.

3. Focus on customer experience

Amazon has set high standards for customer experience with fast delivery, simple returns, and great customer service. A Walker study found that customer experience will be the key brand differentiator.

As an online store, focusing on making websites user-friendly, fast, and appealing should be a top priority. In addition to working on websites, companies should facilitate the shipping and returns process.

The latest statistics show that 92% of customers will buy again if the returns process was easy. Free and fast shipping has become the norm, with almost half of retailers offering it as standard.

4. Advertise on marketplaces

Advertising on Amazon could result in brands being lost in a sea of unbranded products. However, social or niche marketplaces may be the right solution for smaller businesses.

As 90% of people buy from brands they follow on social media, growing a company’s presence on a social media marketplace can be a great strategy. Instead of relying solely on websites, companies can find out where their target audience shops already and meet them there.

For more tips and tricks on how to compete with Amazon, check out our blog post by Stewart Dunlop from Udemy!

How to compete with Amazon | Yieldify

In conclusion

Amazon has utterly transformed the global online retail landscape with its ubiquity, quality, and ease of use. Due to its size and success, virtually every online store has to compete with Amazon.

Beating Amazon at their own game will require amazing customer experience and support, high-quality products, fast shipping, easy returns, and a good deal of customer-resonating branding.

If companies can give people a unique experience and tremendous value on top of the products, they might just creep out from Amazon’s shadow and become a serious competitor.

Satisfaction Guarantees: The 7 Types & Real World Examples

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How to leverage satisfaction guarantees for eCommerce | Yieldify

Looking to build trust with your customers and simultaneously improve their shopping experience? A strategically placed satisfaction guarantee could be the way to go.

Unlike shopping in-store, online shopping always carries an element of risk for customers. The customer can’t see, smell, or touch the products, making it an entirely different experience. It is, therefore, essential to build trust and demonstrate that you’re a reputable retailer.

An effective way to attend to the perceived risks of your customers is by offering satisfaction guarantees.

By offering money-back, lifetime, or best price warranties, you showcase your confidence in the quality of your products and service. It relaxes and comforts your customers by shifting the risk of their investment from themselves to you.

Your customers don’t want to make a purchasing decision they will later regret. By offering a satisfaction guarantee, you can convince them to trust you with both their data and money.

While the guarantee may be introduced to protect customers, it can also be a compelling marketing tactic. Satisfaction guarantees are powerful tools that can serve as reassurances to potential customers. They can even act as distinguishing factors that differentiate you from your rivals.

7 types of satisfaction guarantees for eCommerce

1. The money-back guarantee

Offering your customers a full refund if they aren’t satisfied with your products is an indication of quality. Or rather, your confidence in the quality of your product. Money-back is the most common guarantee and has almost become standard practice in retail.

Nevertheless, while offering it may reduce perceived risks and help you distinguish your products amongst competitors, there will always be customers that try to take advantage. For that reason, money-back guarantees are usually constrained by a time period, usually 30, 60, or 90 days. Sometimes they can last up to a year or even an entire lifetime.

To determine how long the guarantee should be, you need to examine the specifics of each product. Try to establish how long it takes for your customers to use or wear out the product, and add on a little more time. The longer your guarantee, the greater the risk of customers cashing it in, but also the more sales it will drive.

2. The best price guarantee

Price is one of the determining factors that influences purchasing decisions. In the world of eCommerce, competition is fierce. By implementing the lowest prices for a particular product, you can persuade potential customers to make a purchase with you rather than with a competitor.

The best price guarantee reassures buyers that they are getting the best available offer. If their customers manage to find a better deal elsewhere, companies will often match the new price and refund the difference.

Be careful when implementing this guarantee, as it can significantly hurt margins and even start price wars with your competitors. If you take a more reserved approach and don’t offer this guarantee, your customers could easily flock to a competitor, leading to lost sales. In any market, promoting your products as the “best price” is a high-risk strategy.

3. The lifetime guarantee

Promising your customers a lifetime guarantee on your products is a bold statement of confidence. Lifetime guarantees are usually reserved for higher-priced products that make people question whether it’s worth investing the money. However, splurging on a costly backpack or a good set of knives isn’t as daunting when you know they will last forever.

It shows that you believe your products can last a lifetime, which almost always justifies their price. Offering money back is not the only option, either: you could offer repairs, refills, or replacements depending on your product.

Bear in mind that a lifetime guarantee isn’t something to be taken lightly, and should be used only if you have absolute confidence that your products really are that durable.

4. The free trial guarantee

Free trials are most common for software products, but this is certainly not a hard restriction. E-commerce stores can offer their products for a limited time period with a fully refundable deposit.

For example, shopping for clothes online can be problematic for many. Being unable to see how the clothes fit or to feel the fabric deters 35% of online shoppers from making a purchase. By allowing your customers to return, you give customers the chance to experiment with a range of your products before committing to their favorites.

By taking this small risk, many fashion retailers have boosted their revenue as customers are much more willing to pay for a product they’ve physically seen and worn. If they don’t like it, the product is returned in mint condition, still ready for sale.

Free trial impact on D2C brands | Yieldify
A 2019 research showed that more than 1 in 4 US internet users would be motivated to try a new D2C brand if they were offered a free trial period

5. The ‘try before you buy’ guarantee

Similar to a free trial satisfaction guarantee, ‘try before you buy’ (or ‘pay for what you keep’) is almost exclusively used by fashion retailers. This type of satisfaction guarantee allows customers to buy several items upfront, try them on – or even wear them for a limited number of days – and then return the ones that did not fit. Quite often it is also paired with a personal stylist or a clothing subscription service.

In fact, a 2018 study by Klarna found that 37% of online shoppers surveyed preferred ‘try before you buy’ over any traditional payment method.”

Try before you buy guarantee | Yieldify

6. The free samples guarantee

However, not everything can be tried on as easily as a piece of clothing. That’s where the free samples come in handy.

If you’re a furniture or home decor eCommerce retailer, for example, you may want to provide free fabric samples (aka fabric swatches) to your customers. This way, they can get a feel for the material as well as understand if the color matches their interior before taking the leap and making a high-value purchase.

7. The first-purchase guarantee

Good first impressions can be paramount for customer retention and loyalty. By offering a first-purchase guarantee, you can ensure you’re making a great one.

Turn the fence-sitters into lifetime customers by giving them the option of a return, refund, or even getting another product for free. The first-purchase guarantee eases the minds of your customers and reduces their uncertainties to ensure a great customer experience.

Satisfaction guaranteed examples from leading eCommerce brands

Money-back guarantee example from Feetures

You may be surprised that Feetures, a company that sells socks, offers a lifetime guarantee for their products. Feetures makes a promise to its customers that their socks are durable and high-quality. With a no-questions-asked lifetime guarantee, customers can rest assured that they are investing in a rock-solid product.

Satisfaction guarantee example | Yieldify
Feetures offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee – no questions asked!

Best-price guarantee example from HobbyKing

To prevent comparison shopping and showcase their affordable pricing, Australian retailer HobbyKing teamed up with Yieldify. The solution was to employ a click trigger, meaning that whenever users highlighted a certain line of text, they were shown a ‘best price guarantee’ message, like so:

Prevent comparison shopping - Yieldify feature

Lifetime guarantee example from Patagonia

Patagonia is one of the leading outdoor clothing brands that has implemented an e-commerce platform to boost their sales. They are known for making long-lasting, eco-friendly products, and they even discourage customers from buying too many of their products.

Their “ironclad guarantee” has been tried and tested by many of their customers. It’s a lifetime guarantee that has become a cornerstone of their success in achieving the trust and loyalty of their customers. By making it one of their USPs, Patagonia has used the guarantee as a clever marketing tactic while staying true to its core values.

Free trial guarantee example from Red Wing Shoes

Red Wing Shoes is known as one of the best shoewear investments you can make and to back this up, the company offers a “30-day unconditional comfort guarantee.” Red Wing gives its customers 30 days to break in the shoes. Knowing that no two feet are the same, they allow returns and offer a refund or replacement if for any reason customers are not satisfied.

‘Try before you buy’ example from Warby Parker

Warby Parker, a well-known American online retailer of prescription glasses and sunglasses, allows its customers to select five frames to test out for five days. Shipping and returns are taken care of, and you can easily mix and match between styles for men and women.

Warby Parker offers a free home try-on

Free samples example from Joybird

Custom furniture and home decor retailer Joybird has created a swatch kit to provide its customers with unconditional support in their buying process. Customers are able to select a family of colors they want to explore. They are also provided with a handy card of all the wood finishing options that Joybird has to offer, and a resourceful booklet with more information.

Satisfaction guarantee example | Yieldify
People love sharing swatch pairings on social media (via Instagram)

First purchase guarantee example from Atolla

Atolla is an AI-powered skincare brand that creates customized beauty serums. Having data and technology at its core, Atolla showcases confidence in their product by offering a money-back guarantee on the first purchase.

Satisfaction guarantee example | Yieldify
Atolla guarantees full refund on your first purchase

In conclusion – are satisfaction guarantees right for you?

There is no straightforward answer to this question, as every brand and business model is different. Offering a 100% satisfaction guarantee can boost your sales and ensure happy, returning customers. However, it can also have a negative effect on your ROI.

Sometimes not offering a guarantee is the better choice. If you’re an up-and-coming store that doesn’t have an established brand, you may want to think of making some kind of promise to your customers: by committing to a 100% satisfaction guarantee, for example, you will be more likely to provide that level of quality. Trust in yourself and your products will translate to loyalty from customers.

However, be careful about what you’re promising. Offering a lifetime guarantee on disposable products could quickly take its toll on your balance sheet. Don’t use guarantees as empty promises, but rather as an encouragement to do better.

Satisfaction Guaranteed FAQs

❤️ What Is A Satisfaction Guarantee?

A satisfaction guarantee is any formal assurance that products can be returned, repaired, or replaced if they do not meet the specified quality.

? What Type Of Guarantees Are They?

There are many types of satisfaction guarantees, including money-back, lowest price, free trial, and lifetime guarantee. We go into more detail below.

❓ Should You Offer Satisfaction Guarantee?

When a company offers a guarantee it shows they stand behind their product and believe customers will not get their money refunded. This is a clever way of showing that you believe the product works well and will leave customers 100% satisfied.

How to Track Shopping Cart Abandonment In Google Analytics In 4 Steps

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Not sure how to calculate the cart abandonment rate for your eCommerce store? Want to track cart abandonment in Google Analytics? In four simple steps, we’ll guide you through the process.

On average, over 75% of shoppers will abandon their carts and leave a site without completing a purchase. Cart abandonment is like going to the store, picking out what you like, deciding that it’s just not worth it and leaving empty-handed. Except it’s much easier to do online.

Cart abandonment is a source of serious sales loss for many companies. And despite the overwhelming evidence of this, and the fact that these missed sales opportunities were only moments away from converting, tracking cart abandonment is very often overlooked.

The good news is that this situation is easy to change. The first step is knowing how to identify and track cart abandonments.

? How do I track abandoned cart in Google Analytics?

To find your cart abandonment rate in Google Analytics you will either need Enhanced eCommerce or a Goal set up. Setting up a goal is the easiest way to find your abandonment rate. We’ll show you how to do this.

❓ What is abandonment rate in Google Analytics?

Abandonment Rate in Google Analytics calculates what percent of people have commenced a conversion process, but have not completed the process.

? How is abandoned cart rate calculated?

Shopping Cart Abandonment Rate is calculated by dividing the total number of completed transactions by the number of initiated sales. (adds to basket) . You then subtract the result from one and then multiply by 100 to find your abandonment rate.

Cart abandonment solutions for eCommerce - Book a Yieldify demo now!

Calculating cart abandonment rate

Even though cart abandonment causes significant financial losses, it is fairly simple to calculate:

Cart Abandonment Rate formula:

(1 – (#Completed transactions / #Initiated sales)) * 100

For example: Let’s say your eCommerce store had 5,000 sales in the last month. The number of initiated shopping carts that did not result in a purchase was 25,000. By subtracting the division of the two numbers from one, you realize that 80% of shoppers didn’t complete their transactions this month.

(1 – (5,000 ÷ 25,000)) * 100 = 80%

To understand how your store is performing within the context of other businesses, check how your rates stack up against industry benchmarks:

Cart abandonment rate by industry | Yieldify
(Data via Statista)

Tracking shopping cart abandonment in Google Analytics

Using the provided formula, you can easily track cart abandonment rates on your eCommerce store. However, if you want an automated and more sophisticated solution, you’re going to have to rely on software.

Google Analytics is a free and effective tool that lets you track website traffic and the behavior of visitors. By creating funnels, you can effectively track the customer journey and pinpoint where problems arise in the checkout process. 

Step 1: Set up a new goal

Start by logging in to your Google Analytics account and opening the Admin tab at the bottom of the homepage. After choosing the Account, Property, and View that you require, click on Goals at the far right of the page.

Cart abandonment Google Analytics - Set up goal | Yieldify
Navigate to the Admin panel
Cart abandonment Google Analytics - Set up goal | Yieldify
Under View, click Goals and create New goal

Goals are the specific objectives you set up to measure how frequently website visitors complete specific actions. You can use a template for setting them up or start from scratch by choosing Custom. For the purposes of tracking cart abandonment, we click on Create Goal and choose Checkout Complete.

Step 2: Describe the goal

Describe the specific goal by giving it a name and choose the Destination tab under Type. We choose the destination tab to track whether the customer reached the end destination: usually a page that indicates that a transaction was completed.

Cart abandonment Google Analytics - Set up goal | Yieldify
Name your goal and choose a type

Specify the Destination by copy-pasting the URL of the page customers reach after a successful purchase. Be sure to select Begins with and only input the static part of the URL, for instance, the section in bold:

www.yourstore.com/success/checkout/345632

The number that changes with each checkout should be excluded from the Destination – your website should dynamically inject it at the end of your destination page.

Cart abandonment Google Analytics - Set up goal | Yieldify
Specify the destination URL

Step 3: Create a funnel

Lastly, create a funnel by adding a link to every step in the checkout process. The simplest checkout funnel would contain the cart page, checkout page, and the successful purchase page. However, some stores have additional steps in the checkout process so check how yours works and adjust accordingly, by adding additional URLs. 

Cart abandonment Google Analytics - Set up funnel | Yieldify
Specify the URLs for your checkout funnel

Step 4: Find cart abandonment reports

Now we can find shopping cart abandonments in google analytics.

On the Google Analytics home page, head to E-commerce under Conversions, and select Goals. Note that data collection takes up to 24 hours, so you won’t be viewing real-time data. 

By clicking on Funnel Visualisation you can see where in the buying process users dropped out, and identify the strengths and weaknesses of your funnel.

Cart abandonment Google Analytics - Funnel visualization | Yieldify
Head to Funnel Visualization to view your funnel performance

For instance, in the example from the Google Analytics Demo Account, we can see that while over a thousand visitors added an item to their cart, only 14 completed the purchase. By analysing every step, you can determine what makes buyers drop out. 

But don’t stop there – look at the data in different segments. For example, if you realize that more carts are abandoned on mobile, this could be an indicator that your site isn’t well optimized for mobile users. Inspecting different data segments can lead to crucial insights.

Cart abandonment Google Analytics - Funnel visualization | Yieldify
Funnel visualization report for eCommerce

Top reasons for cart abandonment

One of the strengths of tracking cart abandonment is that you can identify what issue is at hand. While there may be a unique issue for your store, here are some of the general barriers to completed sales:

Cart abandonment reasons | Yieldify
(Data via Baymard Institute)

Let’s unpick some of them.

1. Additional delivery costs

Perceived “hidden costs” are often the main reason why companies lose potential customers. Many customers feel that costs of delivery, shipping or taxes should be clearly shown prior to checkout. Since almost half of customers give up on their purchase for this reason, the idea clearly has merit. 

Prominently displaying information about additional shipping costs prior to the customer reaching checkout is vital. For example, you could indicate on the homepage or on a banner that free shipping is included on all orders over $75 or display a ‘free shipping and free returns’ trust badge.

Progress bar - Yieldify feature
Example of a Yieldify progress bar in action

Improve the customer experience by making it easy for customers to obtain shipping and delivery information. This makes it easier for customers to buy, which means more completed sales for your business.

2. Comparing prices or deciding against the purchase

Evaluating alternatives is a normal part of the consumer buying process. While there are other factors at play, such as shipping or warranties, many customers simply check your prices directly against your competitors. And if they find a better deal elsewhere, they take it. 

While there is not much you can do to prevent this, you can implement retargeting strategies to remind potential customers of their incomplete purchase. According to a study from VWO, an astonishing 58% of customers have stated that emails and ads which offer a discount on abandoned products will bring them back to the website.

At Yieldify, we tend to use our click trigger functionality to combat comparison shopping, specifically, the ‘copy-paste-compare’ action.

Comparison shopping feature Yieldify
How Yieldify prevents comparison shopping

Under the assumption that customers highlight product names to copy and paste them in the search engine, we trigger an assuring message that they’ve already found the best price. (See this feature in action in the HobbyKing case study).

3. Out of stock

Inventory management is surprisingly vital to providing excellent customer service. While finding the balance between over- and understocking can be tricky, being unable to provide for your customers can have disastrous consequences.

Going through the entire shopping process to find out their items aren’t actually available can be frustrating for customers. Therefore, by indicating that an item is currently out of stock and recommending similar items before the customer reaches the checkout process, you can significantly lower cart abandonment rates and increase customer satisfaction.

Social proof examples | Yieldify

4. Delivery times

A significant number of customers abandon their carts when they realize that the waiting time is too long. Same-day delivery has proven to be incredibly important: progressively more customers expect their products to be delivered in record time and without exorbitant shipping costs. We can thank Amazon Prime for setting this expectation!

While choosing between fast and free shipping is a nightmare for most retailers, setting up adequate shipping prices does help. To ease customers’ minds, always include estimated shipping times and offer:

  • Free shipping for longer delivery times.
  • Expedited shipping options (with the appropriate charges).
  • Tracking information that gives customers a sense of control over the situation.

5. Payment methods

Column Five’s study has shown that 56% of customers would like to have a variety of payment options. Not being offered their preferred method can result in 20% of customers abandoning their purchase entirely. 

By including the most catch-all payment methods such as PayPal, Visa, and MasterCard you will capture the vast majority of buyers. From there it’s a case of researching what other payment methods your target customers use, as there are endless smaller platforms that are region- or industry-specific.

Ensuring that customers can pay using their smartphones is also crucial, as studies estimate mobile eCommerce sales will account for the majority of online sales by 2021.

Abandoned cart recovery

There are multiple effective cart abandonment solutions that online retailers use to recover abandoned carts. The most powerful tools, such as email remarketing – often with the help of tools for list building – or retargeting ads, are used to recover as many sales as possible.

Shopping cart abandonment rate statistics | Yieldify

Email remarketing campaigns

Almost a third of cart abandonment emails result in a purchase. Emails are a highly effective tool that helps convert customers at virtually no cost, but to improve your recovery email success you should focus on:

  • Brainstorming captivating subject lines that ensure your emails get opened.
  • Personalizing emails by addressing the customer by name.
  • Using urgency and scarcity techniques by indicating how many items are left in stock.
  • Proposing alternative products if the one the customer wanted is out of stock.
  • Using clear, simple email designs that let users navigate directly to checkout.
  • Sending multiple recovery emails, including the first one within an hour of the customer leaving your site. Here, timing is everything.

Ad retargeting

Another useful tool to reach customers that have abandoned their carts is to create ads on Google or Facebook. Retailers have a vast amount of data available to them through Google Analytics and social media, making it easy to target the right customers at an optimal time.

Retargeting ads are 76% more likely to be clicked than regular ads as they influence the customers that have already seriously considered a purchase. To get the maximum performance out of your ads: 

  • Segment customers by sales history, the value of the abandoned cart, by product, or any other core metric which might boost your efforts.
  • Insert clear and singular-focused calls-to-action.
  • Test different ad copy and design variants.
  • Make sure you aren’t spamming the customer: according to Moz, 7 to 12 times in a month is optimal.

No cart left behind

Knowing how to calculate cart abandonment rate using a formula, or in Google Analytics, is the first step to recovering your lost sales. By understanding the reasons behind cart abandonment, you can improve the customer journey while securing further sales for your store.

Cart abandonment solutions for eCommerce - Book a Yieldify demo now!