31 May 2024

How to avoid cart abandonment.

It's one of the biggest issues that all e-commerce stores face. The user goes through their core journey of selecting their desired product and heading over to checkout, only to stop. They metaphorically put that shirt back on the shelf and walk straight out of the shop. Why?

We mulled over this common conundrum for a long period when re-designing the mishmash.pt store. The result of the re-design? 148% rise in sales, total number of orders up by 61% and seeing the ROI in just 4 months. Here's what we did to minimise the dreaded cart abandonment and increase conversions.

5 tips to avoid cart abandonment.

1. Earn trust and credibility.

Before anything else, it’s obvious that users need to feel safe and secure when visiting your store. If something appears off, they will not be entering their card details. You need to make sure that the whole journey is one of consistency, speed, efficiency and professionalism. Show off your security accreditations, privacy policies, and leave out the annoying pop-ups. Making your customer feel safe will make them trust you. Show you are the real deal.

2. Speed Matters.

Don’t let your users go, a slow loading time will make them wonder what they are doing there – it also damages the critical point of trust and credibility – people will not part with their cash if they have any doubts at all there. Make sure your site is rapid.

Delaying the purchase by enforcing an account sign-up will slow things down and also distract the customer from the purchase. It’s annoying, particularly if they have no brand loyalty yet, so always prioritise the guest checkout option. Of course, there are well-known ways to reduce loading time by bringing it back to the basics, such as implementing lazy loading where possible, compressing images, and adding browser caching.

3. Shoppers are on mobile – meet them there.

It’s becoming increasingly unlikely that your buyers are sitting at a desktop when they make purchases. According to Statista, the share of mobile e-commerce in all e-commerce is expected to reach 62% within the next 3 years (it’s at 60% now, up 12% since 2018). It’s important that you’re not neglecting the mobile shopper; your e-commerce needs to be responsive and accessible.

Your e-commerce should be streamlined for the mobile experience to keep your user there before fingers get twitchy. A de-cluttered, minimalist design, with comfortable button sizes for thumbs and one that allows for guest checkout will enable this - only ever request the essential info needed to make the purchase.

4. Be straight with your customer.

You know those last-moment extra costs mean that the bargain you thought you’d landed on is not such a bargain after all – we’ve all been there – and most of us have walked away at that point. Make sure you clear those shipping costs early in the process or even as the product is added. One option here is to suggest adding further items to lower or remove the shipping costs. This will not only reduce the friction of shopping costs but can help to boost the AOV – that’s the route we took with mishmash, resulting in a 9% increase. Alternatively, you can mark up higher and build shipping costs into the product value itself. Remember that transparency increases trust and credibility whichever way you choose to go.

In summary, letting your customer go all the way through just to add a further X% to the total cost at the very end is not going to make them happy. Remember that shopping is emotive.

5. Embrace Guest Checkout.

Nobody wants to sign up for an account to buy something once. Never make that a requirement, only an option. And if you add that option, give the customer some value in return.

At that point, they don’t know you, and they can feel uncomfortable giving you more than is absolutely necessary to purchase their desired product. It’s likely that if they have a smooth experience with you, they'll be back, and at that point, they will be far more likely to create an account. mishmash saw an increase of 51% in returning customers, so be patient with it – if customers enjoy their experience the first time with you, they'll develop brand loyalty and be back for more.

Now, back to giving them something in return: you can encourage sign-ups by offering a discount for first-time buyers – we also implemented that with mishmash to great effect, but we kept it early in the process. Don't clutter your checkout with it; let them complete the purchase smoothly at that point, ensuring no distractions.

Are you keen to transform your e-commerce sales through beautiful, functional designs that will bring results? Get a quote today.


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Our designers are always seeking creative solutions in a collective manner. Dynamic discussions take place informally daily and, specifically, in design meetings with leading contributions from all across the team to continue to shape, evolve and guide our design principles for optimal results.

We build and launch functional digital products.

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