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Abandoned Cart

Abandoned Cart

An abandoned cart refers to the phenomenon where a customer browses an online store and adds products to their shopping cart but does not complete the checkout process for various reasons and leaves the website. This results in a lost sale for the retailer. It is a critical metric for e-commerce businesses, as it can provide valuable insights into customers’ purchasing behavior and potential barriers to conversion.

TL;DR What is an abandoned cart?

An abandoned cart is used in e-commerce to describe when a customer adds items to their online shopping cart but leaves the website before purchasing.


The abandoned cart is an essential concept in the e-commerce industry as it directly affects a company’s revenue and sales performance. By analyzing abandoned cart data, businesses can identify factors that may deter customers from completing a purchase, such as high shipping costs, complex checkout processes, or lack of payment options. Addressing these issues can improve conversion rates, customer satisfaction, and profitability.

Examples/Use Cases

  1. An online clothing retailer may notice a high abandoned cart rate for customers who select expedited shipping. They can recover lost sales by offering free or discounted expedited shipping for a minimum order amount.
  2. An electronics store may find that customers frequently abandon carts when attempting to purchase products with limited stock. Implementing a reservation system or providing information on restock dates can help reduce cart abandonment rates.


  • E-commerce
  • Digital Marketing
  • Conversion Optimization
  • Customer Experience
  • Sales


  • Cart Abandonment
  • Shopping Cart Abandonment

Key Components/Features

  • Unfinished Transactions: Abandoned carts represent potential sales that were not completed.
  • Customer Data: Abandoned carts often include valuable customer data, such as contact information and browsing behavior, that can be used for remarketing efforts.
  • Cart Recovery: Strategies to recover abandoned carts can be employed to regain lost sales and revenue.

Related Terms

Tips/Best Practices

  1. Simplify the checkout process to reduce friction and increase the likelihood of purchase completion.
  2. Offer multiple payment options to accommodate a broader range of customer preferences.
  3. Use remarketing strategies, such as cart recovery emails, to remind customers of their abandoned carts and encourage them to complete the purchase.
  4. Monitor and analyze abandoned cart data to identify trends and areas for improvement.

Further Reading/Resources


What are the main reasons customers abandon their carts?

Some common reasons for cart abandonment include high shipping costs, complicated checkout processes, limited payment options, slow website loading times, and lack of trust in the website’s security.

How can I reduce my website’s abandoned cart rate?

To reduce the abandoned cart rate, you can simplify the checkout process, offer various payment options, provide clear shipping information, optimize your website’s load time, and ensure your site is secure with visible trust signals.

What are cart recovery emails, and how do they work?

Cart recovery emails are automated messages sent to customers who have abandoned their carts, reminding them of their unfinished purchases and encouraging them to complete the transaction. These emails often include personalized content, such as the specific items left in the cart, and may offer incentives like discounts or free shipping.

How can I use remarketing strategies to recover abandoned carts?

Remarketing strategies, such as cart recovery emails, retargeting ads, and personalized recommendations, can re-engage customers who have abandoned their carts. By reminding customers of their abandoned items and offering incentives, you can increase the likelihood of them returning to complete their purchase.

How can I analyze abandoned cart data to improve my e-commerce store?

Analyzing abandoned cart data can help you identify trends and issues that may be causing customers to leave their carts. By examining factors like shipping costs, payment options, and website performance, you can make data-driven decisions to optimize the customer experience and reduce cart abandonment rates.

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