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You lose sales from cart abandonment.

The questions are (a) why customers leave your site without purchasing, and (b) what you can do about it. But before we get to the solution, it is important to understand the problem. Today we break down cart abandonment rate statistics by year, device, and industry.

This article is part of step 1 in our data-driven roadmap to reduce shopping cart abandonment. It is the single most effective way to immediately increase revenue and optimize conversions.

Click here to view the full roadmap.

What is Shopping Cart Abandonment Rate?

Shopping cart abandonment is an eCommerce phenomenon where customers add items to their cart, but leave the site without completing the purchase.

There are many ways to calculate the rate. One shopping cart abandonment formula is to take the number of abandoned transactions divided by the number of initiated sales (number of sessions where at least one item was added to the cart).

What's the Average Cart Abandonment Rate?

There have been hundreds of studies surrounding cart abandonment statistics.

The global average cart abandonment rate for 2016 was 77.24%. In other words, over 3/4 of shoppers choose to leave the site without completing a purchase.

2016 Shopping Cart Abandonment Statistics

How do devices change cart abandonment rates?

Device plays a substantial role in cart abandonment rates.

Mobile accounted for the highest rates, with 85.65% of all transactions ending without a sale.Meanwhile, tablets converted sales 80.74% of the time, a 5.7% improvement in revenue.

Desktops performed the best in terms of cart abandonment, with 73.07% of transactions failed.

The trend is obvious. The smaller the size of the screen, the more likely a customer is to not purchase. This is problematic considering that for the first time ever, more digital buyers will use smartphones than desktops to shop.

Why is this?

According to RetailDive, eCommerce shops are still not optimized for mobile. Slow load times abound. Many stores remain unresponsive, forcing customers to zoom in and out to navigate a page.

Worse, pop-ups that are fine on desktop take up are often not fine on mobile.

Further, every inconvenience driving cart abandonment on desktop - such as mandatory registrations and long checkout processes, are intensified on smartphones.

Shopping Cart Abandonment Trends: 2016 vs 2015

One way to gauge eCommerce marketing effectiveness is to track changes overtime.

We compared abandonment rates between 2015 and 2016. Unfortunately, what we found was not encouraging.

In 2015, the global average abandonment rate was 71.39%. In one year, stores on average experienced an 8.4% increase in shoppers leaving without completing their purchase.

This trend held true across all devices.

shopping cart abandonment statistics

Shopping Cart Abandonment Trends Across Industries

Data in aggregate can be misleading. The truth is, abandonment rates vary drastically from industry to industry.

In order to understand how your store is performing, you should compare your current checkout rates to other stores within your industry.

A study conducted by Statista shows that the abandonment rate went up by over 24% from the Gaming Industry to the Finance Industry.

This graphic by SalesCycle illustrates the point nicely.

Other Types of Shopping Cart Abandonment

While this article has focused on shopping cart abandonment, there are many other abandonment points that you should consider.

Form Abandonment

Form abandonment occurs when customers begin filling out fields in a form, but for some reason decide to leave before completing.

These forms could be for free products such as newsletters, more information such as a free demo request or price requests, or online applications.

In general, the longer the form, the more friction customers experience, and the greater possibility that they will not fill out the form.

Browse Abandonment

Browse abandonment is a higher level form of abandonment. Sometimes, shoppers clearly engage with a product category, viewing multiple products, zooming in on pictures, and comparing prices without placing a product into a cart.

Browse abandonment refers to customers who show this level of engagement, but leave the site without either placing an item in a cart or completing a purchase.

Next Steps

Understanding the facts is the first step in creating an effective marketing campaign to recover abandoned carts.

The statistics are clear: shopping cart abandonment is a major problem across all devices and industries. However, the biggest challenges come on smaller screens (smartphones/tablets) and industries that require a lot of steps to complete such as finance.

The next step is understanding why your customers are not deciding to purchase.

For that, I encourage you to read the next part of our roadmap to shopping cart abandonment: The Top 10 Reasons Your Customers Abandon Your Cart.