Abandoned carts and push notifications

abandoned-shopping-cart

Cart abandonment is a major challenge faced by online retailers. The availability of alternative merchandise to the consumer and the fact that your customers can shop 24/7, a lot of the time, mobile users are window shopping. They are on the go looking to be persuaded. Invariably six in ten shoppers who place items in a cart do not check out.

So where does mobile come in to play? Well the increase in consumers using Smartphones to shop can be contributed to the increasing cart abandonment rates on mobile devices. In fact, between 66% and 97% of shopping carts are abandoned on mobile. Consumers may use the cart to compare online prices and shipping rates, or treat their cart as an ongoing shopping list and often prefer to switch to a PC or laptop to complete their purchases. To increase conversion rates on mobile retailers need to work out a strategy to turn browsers into buyers. And as consumers buy more from mobile and tablets, retailers will need ways to recover sales from the high percentage of carts abandoned in their mobile app

To combat cart abandonment Email Marketers have already gotten on the bandwagon so now is an opportune time for Mobile Marketers to do the same. The results of email remarketing after cart abandonment are favorable; research can reveal that email remarketing drives higher order values, showing an increase of as much as 55% and that the majority of customers who are going to buy as a result of a remarketing campaign, will do so within 24 hours of abandoning a purchase.

Here are useful ways push notifications can be used for abandoned carts:

  • Buy within the next hour and get free shipping
  • Add a handbag and get 25 % off

In the above examples in the case of a retailer, through tight integration with their checkout flows in their app, they can send personalized push notifications to shoppers who have abandoned a cart. And with this, a retailer can notify shoppers through re-engagement where there is already a product in the shopping cart.

Similarly to shoppers who haven’t put anything in the cart a personalized push notification could be sent out such as:

  • That Ted Baker Skater Dress with Lace is available in red
  • The Karen Millen Black Patent Strappy that you looked at are available in your size

These pushes were delivered following on from the customer selecting a colour or a size.

Unlike email Push messaging can help to deliver a frictionless experience to the customer. With push messaging the shopper is placed right at the checkout, removing friction where your message and brand are elevated above the noise of the customers already crowded email inbox.

Push messaging can be used as a mechanism to reengage your customers who may have abandoned their carts or are on the verge of doing so. And for the retailers that embrace push notifications in this way, they will be miles ahead of the competition. And if it yields comparable results to email, you could recover up to between 12% and 16% of abandoned carts. However before your customer abandons ship there are mechanisms you can put in place to combat cart abandonment. One significant determining factor is free shipping, where a Deloitte study found that 69 % of customers are more likely to shop with online retailers who offer free shipping and 61 % of shoppers would quit their order if free shipping wasn’t offered. Ultimately with more and more consumers using their smartphones to shop and their carts being abandoned, now more than ever is an opportune time to take advantage of push messaging.

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The Power of Mobile App Push Notifications

Marketing today is all about capturing the consumer at the right time and in the right context. One way to achieve this is through push notifications on mobile devices. A push notification is the most direct way to engage with your app users. What’s more, of those who download a brand’s mobile app, 68% opt-in to receiving push notifications from that app. With push notifications you can keep users informed with timely and relevant content, whether you app is running in the background or inactive. Notifications can display a message, play a distinctive sound, or update a badge on your app icon.

McDonalds-push-notification So why are push notifications so powerful?

Well for a start the consumer is mobile. The global smartphone audience has surpassed the 1 billion mark in 2012. Push notifications provide a direct-to-pocket channel and are within arms-reach of the consumer. Although this may seem like a passport to reaching your consumer it is important to capture their attention also. Similar to email, push notifications consider the user before delivering push. Messaging can therefore become more relevant by including previous location information, in app behaviors, stated preferences and purchase history. For instance, you’re walking past Starbucks at 8.00 am on a Monday morning and you’re a long time loyal customer at this location, chances are you would love a coupon for a Tall Latte. Push notifications when used sparingly and correctly can be good for your brand and can allow you to connect with your mobile audience in a helpful but influential way.

1) Push can drive unplanned purchases

Push not only promises to build customer loyalty, but it can also motivate impulse or unplanned spending. In a study on shopping behavior it was found that shopping apps are considered most useful and more likely to impact shopping behavior. Email and online product reviews were also included; the common denominator being their ability to influence the consumers shopping behavior and satisfy their shopper needs.

2) Push can influence the consumer on their journey

Push can be part of a holistic customer journey, for instance giving customers the information that they need from various devices from their smartphone when they are on the move (researching a product) to their tablet when they are at home (getting out their credit cards to make a payment). Whilst push notifications are concentrated on mobile phones and tablets they are quickly expanding to reach all kinds of new internet devices. In fact, the world will have more connected devices than people – 75 billion devices connected to the “Internet of things” by 2020.

3) Push can drive customer retention

Push can promise to help with customer retention. For most app marketers minimizing churn is a major pain point. Retention for push-enabled users is significantly higher than for those who disable push notifications with a nearly 3 times higher retention rate compared to those who disable push. To keep users coming back into the app months down the road, it becomes extremely important to send timely, actionable push notifications. Even just one month after first downloading the app, the difference in retention is staggering. The cost to acquire an app user is $1.79 which is based on a quality user, defined as a user that will open the app at least three times. If you are willing to invest such an amount in capturing your user in the first place, with the cost per acquisition potentially lower then your lifetime value, you should be willing to invest more into retaining the user.