A shopping cart is a real or virtual place customers place and store items as they browse products.
When customers shop in stores, they typically place items in their shopping cart to store them as they browse before purchasing. In ecommerce, the shopping cart works similarly, allowing customers to place products in a digital storage space as they move through product pages. The shopping cart is enabled by software that’s also connected to the checkout and payment areas of the site, which streamlines the path to purchase for customers.
The digital shopping cart not only helps facilitate a customer’s purchase, but also provides the business with critical insight they can use for marketing purposes. If customers place items in their cart but don’t make purchases, for example, the business can calculate the average shopping cart abandonment rate (CAR) to determine how many customers they’re losing at the final shopping stage. They can also see which items are frequently placed in carts, then engage customers for repeat purchases.