Actionable tips, community conversations, and marketing inspiration.

4 Ways Abandoned Carts Hurt Your Shopify Store (Beyond Revenue Loss)

Lindsay Duggan Martinez

Principal Partner Marketing Manager @ AdRoll

Ask any marketer, and they’ll agree: Abandoned carts are a nightmare. Not only do they hurt your revenue, but they also drain your team’s morale. The most frustrating part? It’s difficult to identify what might be causing your abandoned cart rates to creep up.

But the challenge of diagnosing abandoned carts doesn’t mean you should accept them as an inevitable pain point of operating a business. Instead, prioritize tackling them ASAP. If not, you run the risk of experiencing these four pesky problems. Here’s what to know, plus how to get your abandoned carts under control. 

The truth behind abandoned carts.

1. Abandoned Carts Can Cause Inventory Issues

If your Shopify store includes a well-oiled back end that automates inventory and fulfillment (an implementation we highly recommend), abandoned carts can, unfortunately, wreak havoc on this process.

When shoppers add products to their carts, your Shopify store reserves the items to ensure they’re not sold to other customers currently on your site. Imagine shopping in a brick-and-mortar store — if you place something in your cart, it becomes unavailable to another shopper strolling through the aisle. Virtual shopping carts function similarly to minimize the chances that retailers sell more inventory than what they actually have in stock.

Imagine the complication when real customers (who are ready to convert) find the items they want are unavailable — not because they’re out of stock; but simply because they’re tied up in an abandoned cart.

2. Abandoned Carts Can Push Shoppers to Your Competitors

Here’s a stat that’ll haunt you for the rest of the day: Approximately 25% of cart abandoners purchase similar products from a store’s competitor.

Not only do abandoned carts hurt your brand, but they also help your competitors. And if you think 25% is a negligible figure, keep in mind that you shouldn’t treat each potential first-time shopper as a one-off converter. With the right loyalty and retention programs in place, customers will often return for more and even recommend your brand to their friends and family.

In other words, without the opportunity of this first sale to impress them, you’ve lost the value of their cart to a competitor and all of the potential sales in their lifetime as your customer.

3. Abandoned Carts Can Drain Your Marketing Budgets

By now, you’re probably aware of the sales-driving power behind paid acquisition channels, social media, and brand awareness campaigns.

However, when shoppers make it through your entire marketing funnel only to abandon their carts at the very last minute, you’ve essentially wasted all the money you spent to get them to shop your site in the first place. Those Facebook ad dollars? They’re down the drain. That display ad budget? Poof.

The trickiest part? Without closely monitoring your analytics dashboard, you might not realize abandoned carts are draining your budget. While an ad may drive a tremendous amount of traffic and clicks, that doesn’t mean it’s contributing to actual conversions. The challenge only mounts when you realize how complicated modern shopping journeys are — someone might click on a Facebook ad, check you out on TikTok, and then see a banner ad before eventually visiting your site.

With AdRoll, you can wave goodbye to abandoned carts 👋

That’s why it’s essential to use an all-in-one ad platform like AdRoll, to analyze how well each and every slice of your marketing pie drives conversions.

4. Abandoned Carts Can Destroy Your Profit Margins

Shoppers are getting savvier by the minute — you probably know all about how some consumers strategically abandon their carts in an effort to score a retargeting email with a discount code. 

But when shoppers expect discounts, your profit margins can quickly dwindle, especially if you don’t have a solid pricing strategy that takes these deal seekers into consideration. 

Plus, if you’re constantly offering deals and discounts to recover abandoned carts, your brand image may take a hit, with shoppers refusing to pay full price for anything, ever.

Say Goodbye to Abandoned Carts 👋

Abandoned carts are not the end of the world, especially if you’re using a platform like Shopify numerous apps and integrations designed to help tackle them.

The best part? There’s no need to take on abandoned cart recovery alone. In fact, we’ve created an all-levels guide (complete with tools, tactics, and tips!) to help you begin recouping your lost revenue and customers. Download The Abandoned Cart Recovery Playbook for Shopify Merchants to get started.

Explore Next