Deloitte consulting director warns a cart abandonment doesn’t always mean a lost sale

April 30, 2014

The internet is playing an increasingly significant role within the brick-and-mortar retail stores in the U.S.

The internet is playing an increasingly significant role within the brick-and-mortar retail stores in the U.S. A recent Deloitte Digital survey found that digital interactions, such as research done via mobile phones, will influence roughly 50 cents out of every dollar spent by consumers at retail outlets by the end of 2014, according to a summary of the report posted by Internet Retailer.

So it’s clear that if retailers want to attract consumers to purchasing products at credit card payment processing terminals – either online or in-store – they’ll need to integrate digital technology into their store offerings. The Deloitte survey proved exactly that: almost 70 percent of respondents noted that they check the web for prices before leaving for stores, according to the report. Additionally, roughly 35 percent of consumers use those smartphones while they’re shopping in-stores.

Cart abandonment rates may not be as bad as they seem
Jeff Simpson, director of Deloitte Consulting, told Internet Retailer that the ubiquity of these in-store digital interactions may be confusing some retailers. For example, cart abandonment online – where consumers put products in their online shopping cart, but never purchase them – may be offset by consumers who originally planned to buy products online, but eventually purchased them in-stores.

Cart abandonment is a major concern among retailers. According to a recent report from Business Insider, roughly $4 trillion worth of merchandise will be abandoned at online shopping carts this year, with the consumers who added the products never continuing on to online credit card payment processing pages to complete their orders.

“Retailers might regard online shopping cart abandonment as a failed conversion when, in reality, it may represent a customer who started their wish list in the online basket, but chose to purchase the items in the store,” Simpson told Internet Retailer. “In that case, digital engagement may have led to a sale in the physical store.”

Which industries are being most affected by digital interactions? According to the report, that would be the electronics industry, where 58 percent of respondents said they had been influenced to make purchases by digital interactions, and furniture, where 56 percent reported the same. However, it’s clear that organizations within all industries will need to work hard to integrate digital interactions into their current shopping experiences to better serve the demands of the modern customer base. 

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