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Why every subscription service should have abandoned basket capabilities


Subscription services are increasingly popular, especially in the UK and the US. British customers spend more than £2 billion on them each year. Americans spend an average of $273 a month on subscriptions.

The remarkable growth and popularity of subscription services means that competition is high. Even potential customers who explore your website, find the service/package they want, and place it in their shopping basket may leave before they complete the transaction.

But that doesn’t mean you’ve lost them forever. You can take steps to bring them back and convert them into regular subscribers.

In this post, we’ll explore cart abandonment, the common reasons behind it, and the benefits of adding abandoned basket capabilities to your subscription services.

What is cart abandonment, and why does it happen?

Cart abandonment occurs when a shopper leaves a website before they complete an online order or sign up for a subscription service.

Cart abandonment is a common issue affecting businesses across most industries. Websites specialising in cruise and ferry services experience cart abandonment most often, at a rate of 98%. Other sectors affected frequently include mobile providers (90.7%), airlines (90%), luxury (87.9%), and fashion (87.7%).

In the subscriptions world, cart abandomnet can be particularly high due to the high commitment of a subscriptions. Limio typically sees its clients having 98-94% abandonment rate - which is a 2-6% conversion rate.

There are several reasons why shoppers abandon their carts before they convert. These include:

Extra costs

When extra costs are added during the checkout process, like taxes or service fees, the price may become higher than the shopper expected to pay. That could be enough to chase them away to a competing service.

The checkout process takes too long

The best checkout process is quick, simple, and convenient. Shoppers want to pay and carry on with their day. The more steps between them and completing the checkout process, the more likely they’ll leave their cart behind. This is why payment methods supported by Limio such as PayPal and Apple Pay can reduce time to completion by up to 2/3.

New customers need to set up an account

Trying to force a new shopper to create an account before they can put items into their shopping cart creates friction. Sometimes, it's unavoidable, for example for a digital subscription. Other times, you want to capture contact information or it is necessary for order provisioning. But if you are able to delay registration, then it's worth investigating that option. Limio can support both authenticated and guest checkouts.

The pricing structure is unclear

Provide shoppers with complete pricing information before they put an item into their basket. This reduces the risk of losing them at the checkout stage once they see the final price. Customers may also appreciate if you share the terms and conditions of the subscription, such as auto-renewal terms - this is mandatory in some jurisdictions.

Customers can’t use their preferred payment method

Shoppers want the flexibility to pay for subscription services through various methods. If a customer finds that you only offer one or two options, neither of which suits them, they might abandon their purchase. This is particularly true in Europe where there is more local payment methods such as Direct Debit or iDeal.

Customers lose trust in the website or its payment processing

Security is paramount. Potential customers should feel reassured that a business takes the safety of their personal information and payment details seriously. Any hint of weak security could prompt cart abandonment. At a minimum, checkout should always be with a SSL certificate.

Shoppers get distracted

Who hasn’t had the experience of adding things to your cart and getting distracted, only to find you never actually completed the purchase? Shoppers get distracted all the time by ringing phones, app notifications, and so much more. They also get distracted by complex layouts, so keep your checkout page to a minimum and remove headers, footers and unnecessary links.

Website performance problems

Technical issues, like glitches, crashes, and freezes, can all cause customers to question the quality of a website. It may leave them with a negative impression of your company and put them off coming back.

Depending on the factors responsible for cart abandonment, the customer may leave the site with a bad taste in their mouth. For example, a potential subscriber will be less likely to return to complete the checkout process if your website appears unsafe or the price has cahnged.

Even in a case like this, bringing them back to the site may be more challenging — but still doable.

Why you should build abandoned basket capabilities into your subscription services

You've done the hard work: attract the subscriber and get them to add your product to their basket. Leveraging that initial interest is the most important reason to build abandoned basket capabilities into your subscription services. Think about it: someone had enough interest in your services to start the checkout process before they abandoned it. That means they are probably still interested despite something putting them off initially, and there is hope that they could become a valuable customer after all.

Building an abandoned basket feature into your services (or using a platform offering that capability) lets you contact customers after they abandon their carts and help you win them back. They could go on to use your subscription services for years to come, even recommending your brand to others and sending more new subscribers your way.

Sending a quick, friendly message to remind potential customers that they can complete the checkout process is a fantastic way to bring them back to your site. Research shows that retailers achieved conversions of 17.6% by sending shopping cart abandonment emails. Those customers may not have returned to complete those transactions without receiving a little nudge.

Plue, the average conversion rate of shopping cart abandonment emails is 10.7% in some sectors.

How Limio can help you win back abandoned baskets

Want to reach out to customers with an abandoned basket strategy? Limio makes it easy with our built-in Abandoned Basket API. Our Abandoned Basket API gives you a single endpoint to find all abandoned checkouts and take action to bring shoppers back. You can quickly re-establish a basket with a simple link. Connect our API to any email providers or Email Marketing Software such as Salesforce Marketing Cloud or Adobe Marketing Cloud, and create the perfect cart abandonment campaign. It is quick, easy, and effective.

Get in touch to start your subscription commerce journey with Limio today.


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