Helping shoppers buy: Reducing consumer cold feet
Michelle Burtchell | January 5, 2017
Takeaway: At the “Buy” or “Decision” stage – when the consumer is closest to completing the transaction – retailers and brands should do everything in their power to seal the deal, and ensure the consumer remains engaged and focused on clicking buy, and helpful, direct content is the tool to a successful transaction.Business Insider estimates about $4 trillion is left in abandoned carts each year. And who wouldn’t want a piece of that potential revenue? Every time a consumer departs a website without purchasing their cart items, the buyers’ cycle restarts, eating away at precious time and revenue. When a consumer is truly about to click ‘buy,’ they have found the product for which they are searching, done the requisite product research, ironed out the delivery logistics, and are ready to welcome the product into their lives. But sometimes the consumer’s confidence shifts – especially for large-ticket and bulky items. “I wonder if I could find a promo code somewhere to lower the price or get better shipping?” “I wonder if this is the best price?” “I wonder what happens if I need to return it?” “I wonder if it’s better to purchase in-store?”
At this critical point, the consumer should already be equipped with these details or have easy access to them without opening a new browser window and getting distracted, or worse, discouraged, and here’s a few ways to ensure they remain committed to your product.
To do: Make product detail consistent and available across all channels.
Start by: Ensure all content is synced on the website, mobile app, in-store, and on product packaging to aid such purchases and reduce questions and confusion. The same Think with Google study declared, “two in three shoppers who tried to find information within a store say they didn't find what they needed, and 43% of them left frustrated.”
For example: Focus on pricing, materials, color options, delivery fees, size specifications, and care details, and remember to compare to product packaging.
Obstacle: Details change by the minute. Keeping up with updates across all channels can be tricky.
To do: Give your buyers' confidence that they are getting the best pricing and value.
Start by: Compile all existing, relevant promo codes in one place. If 10% off is available publicly somewhere, offer it to your consumer who’s already checking out.
For example: Near checkout, offer a mechanism that lists all the promo codes they could be using and show competitors’ pricing to affirm your website has the best value.
Obstacle: It’s scary to call attention to pricing, especially when it comes to showcasing your competitors, but brand loyalty and completion of transactions is dependent on such transparency. Also, mixing promo codes may confuse marketing source metrics.
To do: Be clear and forthcoming about the returns process to reduce your return volume.
Start by: Include the return process, especially for complicated products, on the product description page or near the shipping details. About 69% of shoppers abandon their carts at checkout because they are worried about returning an item.
For example: If there is a fee for returns or if the item must be disassembled prior to return, outline this. Be upfront and clear, because anything murky may deter the shopper.
Obstacle: Switching up the logistics of fulfillment is difficult and many retailers don’t want to admit that returns are part of the buyers’ journey.
This is the third part in a series on Supporting the Buyer’s Journey. Read Part I- Bringing Discovery to Shoppers , Part II - When Shoppers Research, and Part IV - Boosting Your Customer Relationships Post Sale.