This infographic from Monetate has some great tips on reducing shopping cart abandonment. They use the term “avoid” which I don’t believe is accurate, though. No one can avoid shopping cart abandonment on their ecommerce website.
75 percent of people who were forced to register first never tried to purchase. In one case study, customer purchases increased by 45% after forced registration was removed. Jared M. Spool of User Interface Engineering.
I’m always surprised when I meet a client with an online checkout process and how few of them have actually tried to make a purchase from their own site! One of our new clients has a site they invested a ton of money into and it’s 5 steps to go from the home page to the shopping cart. It’s a miracle that anyone is making it that far!
I recommend my own strategy, called the 15 and 50 test… get a 15 year old girl and a 50 year old man to buy something from your site. Pay attention to how they did it as well as how frustrating it was. You’ll discover a ton just by watching them! You can’t avoid abandonment altogether, but you can reduce it by a ton.