What Are Your Online Shopping Carts Singing This Black Friday?

Aneta Ranstoller | November 28, 2016

Unsurprisingly, with the acceleration of all things digital, web traffic on retailer’s sites this holiday season is expected to eclipse 2014 and 2015. Deloitte reports that with shoppers now allocating half of their holiday spend to online shopping, a real shift in consumer behavior has taken place changing not only how consumers purchase, but also the landscape of Black Friday.

To purchase or not to purchase?

With this movement in consumer behavior comes a marked decline in loyalty as an online shopper is TWICE as likely to stray to a competitor if the item they are looking for is not in stock or more expensive on your website. [24]7.ai’s research found two distinct types of online shoppers, the ‘Balanced Shopper’ and the ‘Deal Hunter’. If Deloitte’s pre-peak season research proves accurate, based on our discoveries in 2015, we expect that the 2016 ‘Balanced Shopper’ is likely to leave your site when the product they want is out of stock, while the ‘Deal Hunter’ will be primarily driven by price, abandoning when they discover that the price you are offering is higher than another retailer online.

Its Black Fri“day”, but not as we know it.

Shoppers aren’t the only ones being more flexible with their peak season habits. The big retailers now promote offers across the month, meaning that Black Friday is no longer expected to be the biggest shopping day of the year. This extended shopping period gives customers more time to ‘play the online field’ for discounts and superior products, thus making it more crucial for retailers to understand their customer’s intent and understand when they are about to abandon and provide a moment of truth that changes their mind.

As the 2016 Black Friday shopping season lingers, coupled with increasingly demanding consumer expectations, retailers must also shift to attract and retain both the Balanced Shopper and the Deal Hunter. Only when the right moments are delivered at the right time can your online shopping carts be singing in glory with continuous notes of fa-la-la-la-la-la-la-la-la.

To deliver the right moments and ensure your online shopping cart melodies are in tune, retailers must pay attention to what consumers want. The simple formula is CONSUMERS WANT AN EFFORTLESS CHECKOUT PROCESS – that’s it. When making a purchase on a retailer’s website or mobile app, 13 percent of consumers say they would abandon a shopping cart if they couldn’t find answers to their questions, and 15 percent cite incomplete or inaccurate product info as a roadblock. In both cases, chatbot or live chat integration could make the checkout process more seamless, and in some cases, help them complete a transaction that they otherwise wouldn’t. To understand more about how you can leverage these new technologies to anticipate, simplify and learn what your customers want and when, read our Retailer’s Guide to Chatbots, AI and Messaging.