Very often users don’t associate the shopping cart and checkout pages with the intention to buy something, and they can go to these pages for different purposes. Merchants only consider these pages as the final steps of purchasing products, but users may have other ideas, and we review them in this article.
It should be noted that the shopping cart and one step checkout can be implemented as 2 different pages in the online store. In the example below, the shopping cart is not displayed as a separate page, but as a drop-down box, so the user can see the cart and edit the information in it staying on the current page. The information in the cart block is updated without full page reloading, which is very convenient for users. In practice, there can be various approaches to the development of these pages.
What purposes can customers use the shopping cart and one step checkout pages for?
To create and check the order
This is the most obvious purpose, especially for the shopping cart page. Users can add several products to the shopping cart to make a final decision later. It is like in usual shops. You can put a lot of items to the cart, but before cashier, you can change your decision. Online and offline shopping can be an entertainment, and adding products to the cart is a part of this process. In other words, the shopping cart can be used as a wish list even if you have “wish list” option in your store. Also, it is the right place to check the size, color, quantity and other characteristics of the selected products. If a user is going to buy something expensive, this stage is very important because the decision making process can be hard.
To calculate the final price
For whatever reasons, some users are subconsciously expecting a dirty trick or deception related to product price. Such users prefer to check the final price to be sure that there are no surprises. They may do this on the shopping cart page. But as you know, accurate shipping costs and taxes can only be calculated at the final step, when a user fills in all the details about themselves. Therefore, the most meticulous and suspicious users prefer to go to checkout. Pay attention that they are not ready to buy something and they only want to see the total cost. Even if you provide all the information such as product price, tax value and delivery costs for each region on the product pages, some people would prefer to use the checkout page to confirm the total purchase price.
To explore all possible discount options
If a user adds several products to the cart, a variety of ads or promotions may become available to them. These are usually shown on the shopping cart page. Also, some stores allow discounts starting with a specific order cost, so a user may be offered to add certain products to the existing list in the cart to reach the necessary total cost. This may get them free shipping or a more attractive discount. For example, when the order total is above $100, a discount becomes available.
Research of competitors and other interested parties
If your online store is popular, it attracts the attention of both potential customers and competitors. In order to perform their marketing research, they can register, search for products, add them to cart, and even make test purchases and communicate with your managers. One of our clients told us that the reason of increasing the percentage of abandoned carts was that their main competitor had organized a focus group to compare the service quality. All participants did search for some products and added them to carts, and these activities strongly influenced the online store’s conversion rates.
Each eCommerce business is unique and each online store can have its own reason why people add products to the cart. Here are some examples:
- One merchant – the owner of the jewelry online store – told us that their female users add products to cart to dream about jewelry. It’s like a visualization of desire.
- In the Home Decor Online Store, a user added some products to cart and then gave their interior designer access to the account to confirm all the items. The designer made corrections in the order. This is also a real story told by one of our clients.
- It is important to remember that there is some percent of users that are not going to buy anything. They press the button “add to cart” for no reason or just out of curiosity. There is nothing you can do about them.
So, as you can see, not always adding products to the shopping cart and even passing to the checkout process means that users are going to buy something. For merchants, it is very important to monitor the abandoned cart rate carefully and compare it with previous periods. If it is not increasing, that means you have no reason to worry.
Have a nice selling!