Abandoned carts in the e-commerce world is now a real problem for brands, as the recently reported survey shows. What it also shows is how much higher customer expectations are when they interact with companies selling anything from fast food to clothing.
Abandoned carts are a sign that many companies are getting it wrong when they roll out e-commerce propositions, normally combined with an app.
Just when having a website became vital and not having one made customers laugh, brands cannot simply copy what is on their website and stick it in an app. To begin with, websites were digital versions of a company’s brochure, and that changed over time. Now, with the phenomenon of abandoned carts becoming a problem, the same will happen and more ‘joined up’ thinking will result.
The gauntlet has been thrown down, and no longer are customers happy with long logins and the demand for too much information. The level of irritation is reflected in the increasing number of abandoned carts, and companies need to start by looking properly at how their customers think and interact.
Customer psychology cannot be underestimated when it comes to the customer experience; in fact, it should drive the entire strategy. And customer psychology is not something that app development teams or e-commerce managers should believe to be difficult.
After all, they, too, are customers, and they, too, have probably abandoned carts in the past.
It is interesting to read that one of the biggest brands in the world, McDonald’s, is addressing this issue. They announced that they were investing heavily in an app to drive greater loyalty among customers.
The team was being created “to remove some internal barriers and silos that ultimately lead to a fragmented customer experience,” Chris Kempczinski, McDonald’s CEO, said in a memo.
Removing silos is a good reason to do almost anything in business, but if a brand as big as McDonald’s is investing in the customer experience via an app, then others should take note.
Abandoned carts have, of course, been used by customers to manipulate companies. There used to be a trick whereby a customer got to the ‘check out’ stage then abandoned their cart. Within minutes a salesperson would phone and ask if there was a problem and end up offering further discounts to get the stalled sale.
The only problem with investing in apps to improve the customer experience and generate greater loyalty is that everyone is doing it, which, in turn, increases the level of innovation and quality needed to stay ahead.
Yet, the challenge of abandoned carts and the underlying issues has been laid at the feet of almost every industry on Earth. Increasing the investment in this area of customer service is something that no one can ignore.