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Klarna reveals why online shoppers decide to “buy or bail” on a purchase

Tom Bottomley
06 July 2020

Buy now and pay later service provider Klarna, in association with leading software-as-a-service ecommerce platform BigCommerce, has released new data from a report highlighting the fragility of shoppers and the biggest influences on people’s decisions to “buy or bail” on purchasing a product.

Based on a survey of 2,000 UK consumers, the survey ran from 20-25 March, 2020, and findings included four in 10 (38%) of UK shoppers abandon a purchase at least once a week, with a fifth claiming to do so more regularly.

A huge 75% of consumers are likely to abandon their shopping cart if they did not trust a website’s security, while 39% say good customer service would encourage them to shop again with an online retailer, and 27% said poor customer service would deter them.

Additionally, 37% say the ease and functionality of using a retailer’s website has the biggest influence over their purchase decisions, while 35% of shoppers say they are more likely to shop with a retailer that is associated with fun content and “enriching experiences.”

Almost a quarter (23%) said they’d also be influenced by the speed of the checkout process, while 22% are encouraged by flexible payment options.

The findings form part of the new report, called "Navigating Needs: the path to profit in eCommerce", which considers the shopper needs retailers must satisfy in their quest to “gain and retain” customers. It includes expert commentary from retail influencer Andrew Busby.

Laurel Wolfe, vice president of marketing at Klarna, said: “Consumer behaviour might feel particularly unpredictable right now, but fundamental needs remain the same. Customers won’t feel comfortable if a website feels insecure, whilst a fast, smooth checkout process is likely to encourage loyalty. From flexible payment options and shopper security, to relevant content and referral traffic, we’re proud to help retailers improve the shopping experience at every stage of the journey, enabling them to create closer connections with customers."

Andrew Busby, CEO of Retail Reflections and IBM Futurist, as well as a top 20 global retail influencer, commented: “Even before Covid-19 struck, retail was undergoing a seismic shift – and now its transformation is almost inevitable. Innovation is key, and retailers are right to consider new ways of reaching customers and bringing the same enriching experiences to them in this strange new world. But, in a matter of months, functionality and safety have shot to unprecedented levels of importance.

Physical stores may never look the same again and, from the ability to try before you buy to the need for secure spending and rapid returns, online retailers are under peak pressure to make the shopping experience as safe and seamless as possible.”

The research also revealed a lack of fast and affordable delivery options as the number one reason behind cart abandonment, with over half of UK consumers (54%) admitting they have abandoned their online shopping cart due to delivery frustrations.

The burden of needing to create an account and frustrations with the functionality of a mobile website came high in the list of reasons why shoppers “bail”, cited by 32% and 33% respectively as reasons to drop out.

Meanwhile, 27% of consumers have abandoned a purchase because they couldn’t remember their log in details for an existing account, whilst more than a quarter of UK shoppers (26%) admitted they have left a purchase halfway through because they “couldn’t be bothered” to prepare their card details.

A need to be recognised and valued is another key driver influencing purchases, with a third (33%) of consumers noting that personalised offers or discounts would encourage them to shop with an online brand, while almost a fifth (19%) are swayed by a personalised checkout experience. In fact, 19% even said they would be likely to abandon a purchase if they weren’t treated to a personalised offer.

Jim Herbert, EMEA general manager at BigCommerce, added: “Shopping should always be easy and enjoyable. Consumers want ecommerce to be as quick and flexible as possible, and as this research shows, anything less than a seamless experience will result in abandoned baskets. As stress levels rise and purse strings tighten, shoppers will buy more from those merchants that match their needs.

Every abandonment represents a dent in the retailers’ revenues and potentially a sale lost to a competitor, making it incredibly important to consider every aspect of the shopping experience – from security and website speed to the power of personalisation – across all channels where customers engage.”

The full report can be downloaded here.Newsletter banner

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