The Challenges of Shopping Cart Abandonment

Panel Discussion at the Performance Marketing Insights with Henning Scheel, Director Sales & Key Account Management trbo GmbH 


On June 24th and 25th the Performance Marketing Insights Conference took place in Berlin. Together with other industry experts such as Jay Radia, Co-Founder & CEO of Yieldify, Grégoire Fremiot, Director of Partnership Management at RetailMeNot, Oliver Graf, Managing Director Dach of VE Interactive and the presenter Chris Tradgett, Head of Account Management at Linkdex, I have been invited to discuss the topic “Cart Abandonment – Before, During & After”. Since the trbo technology also addresses this challenge and many of our customers have already seen their abandonment rates drop significantly, I accepted and was looking forward to the meeting.


The aim of the discussion was to find out why two thirds of all online purchases are not completed. Consideration should be given to the impact of mobile commerce on shopping cart abandonment rates and the importance of customer journeys.


Gregoire Fremiot of RetailMeNot and Oliver Graf of VE Interactive emphasized the reasons for the high abandonment rates that, while there would be increased use of mobile devices to prepare purchases, the final purchase would be made from the desktop or offline. Oliver Graf explained that the number of competitors is increasing massively due to online availability, as there are currently around 150,000 sales platforms in Germany. Price and product comparisons are used more frequently, which means that the pitch for the user is now only based on the price instead of on the seller’s service and consulting competence. At this point I stated that the first task is to analyze the reasons that prevent the customer from buying. As a second step, an incentive willingness must be built up among the user. In order to achieve this, they must be profiled and addressed individually at the right moment, which requires high-performance technology.


In the course of the discussion, the problem was raised that for onsite conversion optimization, the “journey” of the user on the customer’s website is of particular interest in order to create a better shopping experience and to address the user at the appropriate time. Retailers, however, lack in-house integration. Here I pointed out that customers mostly concentrate on their core business, the necessary know-how is usually not available and therefore a cross campaign cannot be generated. Another challenge is the implementation of a neural algorithm that requires a complex technology. The external implementation via trbo offers several advantages and does not leave the customer out of the equation; he has the possibility to optimize the approach to the customer in close cooperation. Jay Raydia from Yieldify and Oliver Graf from VE Interactive also stressed that an in-house solution is highly dependent on the capabilities and strategic requirements of individual customers. There are hardly any companies that have sufficient in-house resources for this.


Regarding the question of a significant uplift in conversions, both Grégoire Fremiot of RetailMeNot and Jay Raydia of Yieldify emphasized that the number of cancellations in France was also extremely high, yet an intelligent user approach provided good results. I added that the use of trbo technology has led to a significant increase in conversion. This is reflected in control groups (A/B tests), which clearly show the incremental increase in revenue. The key factor is the individual approach to the customer, because the smarter the approach, the better the result. In response to the moderator’s question about what customers could expect from Uplift, Oliver Graf explained that this was dependent on the customer and the tools used, but varied greatly from one individual to another. Nevertheless, an increase would always be noticeable. In this regard I mentioned that it is important to accompany the user on his journey through the shop and not only to invest in traffic to attract users to the website. Because only the former can ensure that the user feels comfortable at every point in the shop.


Towards the end of the discussion round, the question about additional sales arose, besides the uplift. Here, Jay Raydia from Yieldify affirmed that they do exist and can be proven by split-testing.


In general, it can be said that the onsite conversion optimization can hardly be implemented in-house by the shop operator alone, especially if this is to generate an uplift and additional sale. It is especially important to address the user individually in order to increase the conversion rate. Therefore, it is worth to ” close the circle ” and not only invest in advertising measures that generate traffic on the website, but also accompany the customer onsite during the complete shopping experience.

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