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AI Integration Could Reduce Shopping Cart Abandonment

Have you ever added things to your online shopping cart, only to realize that the one thing you came to the site to buy is nowhere to be found? Consumer frustration finding the products they wish to buy has led to increasingly high amounts of search abandonment. This in turn often ends with a consumer abandoning their shopping cart as well. This issue is rapidly becoming problematic for not only the consumer but also the retailer who experiences the loss of yet another potential purchase. According to a report provided by (PYMNTS, 2021), 75% of purchases globally are affected by cart abandonment and can cost merchants about $4 trillion annually. While there is no way to stop every consumer from abandoning their cart, there is hope that improvement to a site’s searchability will drastically decrease the number of carts abandoned. Cart Abandonment vs Search Abandonment We have all contributed at some point or another to the cart abandonment problem in the United States, perhaps without even realizing it. Cart abandonment is when a consumer adds products to their shopping cart on an e-commerce website, but for whatever reason chooses not to complete the transaction. There are many reasons a consumer may abandon their cart including the price of the products, the lack of commitment to a particular purchase, as well as the inability to find a specific product on the site to complete their order. Search abandonment typically comes before cart abandonment, in which a consumer leaves an e-commerce website without completing a purchase because they cannot find the item they are looking to buy. This frustration typically occurs when the site search does not return any relevant results when a consumer uses it. This in turn can be the very reason a user chooses to abandon their cart on that specific e-commerce website. Google Aims to Solve $300B Abandonment Problem In an effort to help resolve some of the frustrations experienced by consumers as well as the loss of sales for retailers, Google has rolled out a new Retail Search product. The Google Cloud Retail Search allows retailers to provide consumers with a more customizable experience and personalized results. While most traditional search platforms are based off keywords entered into the search, Google has positioned its latest product as a way of enhancing the search capabilities provided by retailers. Google Cloud Retail Search implements machine-learning to improve the search results every time it’s used by a consumer. With machine learning, this method of data analysis is essentially studying computer algorithms to train a machine how to learn patterns. This will allow websites to recommend products that consumers like based on previous searches or purchases and not based on keywords. Google is not the only company noticing the search and cart abandonment issues. Fast Simon, a software company that utilizes integrated AI conversion optimization to automate manual work, partnered with the marketing automation platform, Klaviyo in order to help merchants create personalized recommendations for retargeting consumers who abandon potential purchases. This is done by serving ads featuring products that a consumer may have had in their cart, in order to encourage a transaction completion. For example, Fast Simon uses AI merchandising for Fashion Nova’s e-commerce site. When a consumer does not complete a transaction and abandons their cart, they are served ads or emails about the product. Sometimes they even offer discounts just to get you to purchase. Focusing on a consumer’s entire shopping experience from beginning to end will be critical for retailer success. The use of machine learning to improve search results, instead of solely relying on search keywords is just the beginning for brands. Consistent research into the reasons that consumers abandon their e-commerce site searches and abandon their carts will help to further define additional areas of opportunity. Contact the wedü team for more information on how we can help your business with search and cart abandonment issues.
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