Dealing with abandoned checkouts is one of the everyday tasks, you have most probably automated with Shopify apps sending abandoned cart emails, SMS, browser push notifications and instant messaging communications to your Shopify store visitors. What else can you do to further convert abandoned carts into completed purchases and increase your sales?
In this article, we will go through the pain points of abandoned checkouts recovery and the importance of getting feedback from these customers. Do you wonder why your Shopify store customers abandon their checkouts at the very last moment? Sure you do! Do you know why they leave their checkout incomplete? Most probably no… Do you want to find out why your customers do not proceed with their order? Then, you are the right place.
Statistics on cart abandonment show that in 2019 more than 77% of shopping carts globally were abandoned!
This is, unquestionably, HUGE in terms of lost revenue. And as a store owner, you struggle to recover abandoned carts and increase your sales. You are regularly contacting your customers, by any means you’ve chosen, asking them to return to your site and complete their purchase.
The thing is: Do they come back to your store? Does your abandonment recovery process work well?
If your abandonment recovery rate is low, meaning that none, almost none or just a few of your Shopify store customers come back and complete their orders, then it’s almost definitely sure that there is something wrong. This means that all these customers with abandoned checkouts will not convert into paying customers and, in other words, many potential sales were lost.
If you have a satisfactory recovery rate, then several customers come back to your store, after you’ve contacted them and proceed with their order. And you are happy with this result and you, most certainly, should be!
But... What about the rest of the customers? Let’s say that you have a 10% abandonment recovery rate. This means that 90%(!) of your customers with abandoned checkouts did not return to your store and you know nothing about the reasons why.
This is exactly what you need to find out, so to reduce your cart abandonment rates and increase your sales & revenue: why did they abandon their checkouts. Customers were right there in your store, they’ve chosen products and added them in their carts, they entered their info in your checkout page and yet, at the very last minute, they chose not to proceed with the payment and complete their order. WHY?
You’ve most probably read the literature & research on cart abandonment, you’ve made corrections & fixes to your store and, yet, you cannot significantly decrease your abandonment rates. Don’t forget, though, that each store is unique.
Each store creates a distinct impression to its visitors. Each store is visited by different potential customers. Each store covers different needs. As a result, each store fails to keep a customer for different reasons.
So... what about YOUR store? Why did some of YOUR visitors decide not to complete their order with YOUR store? Would people who abandoned their carts recommend YOUR store to their friends & family? Your answer will most probably be "I don’t know!". Well, there is actually only one solution to this.
ASK THEM! You need to not solely focus your efforts on recovering abandoned carts, but on finding out, as well, if there is something your customers perceive as wrong in your store and/or your checkout process. Send them an abandoned checkout email to find out what they think of your store, why they left and how you can fix it.
Don’t forget that people want to feel heard. Customers seem to much appreciate it when they are asked for their feedback, instead of receiving a common email about their abandoned cart asking them to just complete their order, as they feel that their opinion is valued.
Keep it short, collect valuable feedback, fix any reported issues and ALWAYS reply promptly to address your customers’ concerns
Show that you are and act like a professional. Gain their trust.
This way, you are able to increase your happy customer base, you may get the sale too and -just as important- you increase the chances of winning their loyalty & retention, as well as their positive word of mouth & referrals. All these translate into more happy & satisfied customers, more loyal shoppers, more referrals and, of course, more sales for your store.
So, your abandoned cart email should not be just an email reminding your Shopify store customers of their abandoned carts, but should also include an abandonment feedback survey, that will assist you in identifying possible issues & concerns.
Keep in mind that your survey needs to be SHORT -actually very short- & INSIGHTFUL. You should be able to grasp their most valuable feedback in seconds with just a couple of questions. Most people won’t spend time to answer a long questionnaire, no matter if they left your store being happy or unhappy; but, in many occasions, it will be ok for them to spend a couple of minutes to give you their opinion & feedback.
Keeping the above in mind, we suggest asking the following two questions:
Why 2 questions? Because, asking more than 2 questions drops response rate
Let’s dig into these questions...
Net Promoter Score® is one of the most commonly used, tried & tested metrics for customer satisfaction and is strongly associated with BUSINESS PROFITABLE GROWTH. The better your score gets over time the more business growth you will achieve.
This number is the one number you need to grow.
It’s that simple and that profound.
- Fred Reichheld | The inventor of NPS®
at Harvard Business Review
So, your customers are asked to rate your Shopify store using a scale from 0 to 10 regarding the question "How likely are you to recommend <our store> to your friends & family?". This is the core of the Net Promoter System®.
Respondents with 0-6 ratings are classified as "Detractors", 7-8 as "Passives" and 9-10 as "Promoters". So, with a just single question, you manage to identify your customers segments. This segmentation will become handy later on, when replying to them.
What’s next? The Net Promoter Score® is calculated by subtracting the percentage of the "Detractors" from the percentage of "Promoters".
The more "Promoters" you have and the less "Detractors", the higher your score will be and this is what you should aim for. Why?
Simply put, "Promoters" are your word of mouth customers; they are the customers that love your brand, that would visit your website again and that are willing to recommend your store to others. They are your "free marketing" customers, as they are both loyal & referrers.
As such, you should try to keep your Promoters happy and increase your Promoters customer base, by keeping new customers extremely satisfied too and converting -as much as possible- Passives & Detractors into Promoters.
It costs 5x as much to attract a new customer, than to keep an existing one
Now, it’s time to find out what happened during their interaction with your store: why they did not complete their order, if & what went wrong, what is preventing them from proceeding with their purchase, how can you improve their customer experience, do they need any additional information before proceeding with their order. Remember: you’ve only got one question to ask! Think wisely...
Our experience has shown that a simple & to the point question is all you need to get all the above information: "What stopped you from completing your order with us?". If they feel like talking to you, they will tell you what they need, inform you of any problems they encountered, share what they didn’t like and what makes them feel concerned.
It’s time to inspect the feedback you received and analyze your results. Dig into your results by the NPS® segments of customers you’ve identified and reply to them accordingly.
In all cases, when responding to customers, you should firstly introduce yourself and genuinely thank them for their feedback. e.g. Dear <customer name> hi. This is <your name> from <store.com>. Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback with us, it’s highly appreciated.
And in all cases, reply promptly, be understanding, be personal & friendly and try to establish a connection with your customers, no matter their rating.
Emotionally connected customers are 2x times more valuable than highly happy customers. They are less price sensitive, will pay more frequent visits to your store and in the end, they will buy more from you
These customers have no actual problem with your store, they are happy with your store, product offerings & service, and will probably come back to your store to complete their purchase, as long as their issues, if any, are resolved asap. So, reply to them promptly and solve any issues mentioned.
You really should keep these customers within your store! Keep in mind that, according to an analysis on word or mouth marketing from McKinsey, 20 to 50% of purchases are driven by word of mouth.
Let’s make it more clear with a simple example: Let’s assume that you earn $5000 per month through your Shopify store. So, 20 to 50% of word of mouth purchases correspond to $1000 - $2500 revenue per month!
Passives, that rated you with 7 or 8, is a segment that you may convert to Promoters, somewhat easily. They do not feel strongly about referring your store to others, but they are not dissatisfied either. They are in between, but they are also closer to the Promoters rating.
It’s that "little something" that can make a difference for them. And that "little something" can be anything like you asking for their valued opinion, offering them a discount or free shipping to complete their order or you implementing a solution on your store based on their feedback.
Again, reply promptly, try to understand their concerns & issues and, if possible, offer them a solution asap. Make them feel that they are valued customers of yours and their opinion matters.
These customers are dissatisfied with your store and require much of your attention & effort. When dealing with detractors, it’s a completely different story than when dealing with promoters. It’s not about getting them back to your store and completing their purchase; it’s about preventing their negative experience with your store from getting out there.
Reichheld analysed several thousand comments and reported that 80% of negative word of mouth originated from respondents rating from 0 to 6
Taking into account the growth of online reviews, social sharing, forums, blogging, online groups & communities, it’s easier than ever for negative word of mouth to get spread out there. So, reply to them quickly! This is the number 1 rule when dealing with detractors.
Let’s see how you should respond in the cases where your store customers (a) did not provide and (b) provide reasoning behind their rating.
(a) If the customer has given you a low score, but did not provide any feedback on the reasons why, then you should follow-up with them asking why they feel unsatisfied with your store and what you can do to improve their shopping experience.
I understand that you feel ~somewhat~ unhappy with our store and I would really want to assist you with any issues you dealt. As it is of our top priorities to keep our customers happy, would you please share with me your concerns and issues? I will be more than happy to discuss those with you and try to work on a solution for you.
(b) If the respondent shared their reasoning, simply be understanding in your reply, show your customer that you’ve taken into account their issue and that you will do your best to resolve it as soon as possible, if -of course- this is feasible. If applicable, apologize to them. You may optionally provide them with an offer - an incentive for the case they proceed with their order.
I understand that you feel ~somewhat~ unhappy with our store, because (e.g.) ~you didn’t find clear information on delivery times during your checkout~.
It’s absolutely understandable why this is an issue for you and I can totally relate, as I would find this annoying too! Thank you for bringing this to our attention; we are currently working on updating our website with the exact delivery times.
Until we fix this, let me inform you that the delivery time for your order is estimated to X working days.
~Lastly, please let me offer you a 10% discount for your order, using code <code>~ OR ~Lastly, please let me offer you <something> as a gift along with your order~ as a thank you for bringing this to our attention.
If an issue is not possible to get resolved [e.g. your store doesn’t accept a particular payment method] or the customer is just being unreasonable with their issue, then again reply to them with understanding & politeness. Mention that you do comprehend their issue and you do understand their frustration and explain to them why there’s nothing you can do at the moment. Optionally, you may mention how you may try to take action in the near future.
I understand that you feel ~somewhat~ unhappy with our store, because (e.g.) ~our store doesn’t accept <xxx> payment method~. I certainly understand why this is an issue for you and I would feel it inconvenient too if this was my preferred method of payment.
Let me note that currently we cannot integrate with <xxx> because <reasons why>.
~Lastly, please let me offer you a 10% discount for your order, using code <code>~ OR ~Lastly, please let me offer you <something> as a gift along with your order~ , as a compensation for any inconvenience you encountered.
However, if an issue or issues -that you cannot settle- keep coming up through your customers' feedback, then you certainly need to deal with them and come up with a solution, otherwise you will keep losing customers & sales.
You might feel tempted to omit replying to your Detractors, especially if they are a small proportion of your customers. Don’t forget that your biggest challenge with this customer segment is to keep them from spreading negative word of mouth for your Shopify store, that might hurt your reputation and discourage potential customers from doing business with you.
Everything should be clear to you by now on how to deal with customers’ problems, issues, concerns and it can be summarized as follows:
Reply quickly, be understanding and act effectively!
And keep in mind that::
Nearly half of customers who had a positive resolution to their issue were highly likely to both return and to recommend that retailer
All the above, aim at three directions:
So, what’s next in winning the sale?
If a solution has been given by you to their issue and their abandoned checkout is still open, simply follow-up with them with a reminder of their cart waiting for them in your store & your incentive, if you are offering one.
If a solution has not been given by you to their issue, it is suggested to not try any more to win this sale, as the client may get irritated and turn into a negative word of mouth for your store.
AskBeat Customer Feedback is extremely easy to set up for collecting abandoned checkout feedback from your Shopify store customers. Simply, edit the abandoned cart email & the abandoned checkout survey to your liking and send it either manually or automatically, every time a checkout gets abandoned in your store.
You have the option to offer your customers a discount or free shipping code in the "Thank you page" of your abandonment survey, to encourage them to complete their order. So, you can make an offer to the client at this point or when you reply to their feedback and if it feels appropriate.
You may optionally add a button, which will redirect your customers to their abandoned checkout and that will appear in your survey "Thank you page". We strongly advise you to use this option, as this will give you the opportunity to recover abandoned checkouts coming from customers that do not have any issues or concerns with your store.
In any case, be "mild" with your button phrasing, as you don’t know yet how your customers feel about your store and you certainly don’t want to make customers feel pushed. Avoid using phrases like "pay now" or "buy now" and prefer phrases like "view your cart" or "keep browsing".
Last but not least, you have the option to send your customers an automatic reminder. Sending a reminder for an abandoned checkout may even generate more revenue than the first email sent. We suggest you set up a reminder to be sent 1 or 3 days after 1st email, but It’s up to you to decide!
Feedback is your only way towards improvement and the only means you’ve got for detecting and solving your customer issues and fulfilling their needs to the most extent. Show your customers that you value their opinion, know your strengths and weaknesses, improve your store and promptly reply to unsatisfied customers. Drive your store towards growth!