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5 Easy and Proven Ways to Improve Your Add To Cart Rate

Your eCommerce website isn’t just for show. The lifeblood of any eCommerce business is online sales, and to make those sales, you first need to persuade customers to add your products to their shopping cart. Let’s look at how best to increase your add to cart rate. 

What is an Add to Cart Rate?

Your Add to Cart Rate is a measurement of how many people clicked on a product on your eCommerce website to add it to their cart, calculated against the total number of visitors to your site overall. It includes both customers who continued on through the checkout process to make a purchase, and customers who subsequently abandoned their cart before purchasing. 

Customers may add products to their cart for a whole host of reasons. Some simply want to make a purchase and will progress to the checkout page. Others may use the cart to calculate the cost of a range of goods, or to bookmark them for a later purchase. 

Your add to cart conversion rate is a useful key performance indicator (KPI) for eCommerce businesses because it tells you how effective your website is at persuading people to seriously consider buying your products or services. A low add to cart conversion rate could suggest that your website is not showcasing your products effectively, that it’s difficult to navigate, or that your pricing strategy isn’t right for your target market. Whatever the reason, it’s a clear indication that there is room for improvement. 

Conversely, if you want to improve sales and your add to cart rate is already above the average, this is an indicator that you need to look at other potential areas of improvement such as advertising, promotions, or increasing your average order value

How to Calculate and Use your Add to Cart Rate

Calculating this key metric couldn’t be easier. The rate is typically given as a percentage. Simply use the following add to cart rate formula to calculate yours: 

For example, if there are 10,000 sessions on your website in January and, of those, 3,500 add a product to their cart (whether they completed the purchase or not), the calculation is 3,500 / 10,000 = 0.35 x 100 = 35. Therefore your add to cart rate for January is 35%. Tracking this rate over time will give you your average add to cart rate. 

If you’re thinking of changing your website, it’s a good idea to first calculate your add to cart rate benchmark, which is your current rate. Make the change you had planned and wait for a significant number of customers to use the new site, then calculate your new rate to see whether the change had a positive or negative effect. 

In this way, as you make incremental changes, whether it be to the layout, to your product listings, by adding call-to-action buttons, or any other alteration, you can see what works best for your target market and what puts customers off adding products to their carts. Not only will this drive up your overall add to cart rate, it will give you a better insight into your target market and their wants, needs, and preferences. 

The Easiest Ways to Improve Your Add to Cart Rate

So what are the best ways to drive up your add to cart rate? What tweaks to your website should you look at making first? Let’s take a look at five straightforward changes you can make that will drive up your add to cart rate. 

  1. Think about the customer experience 

You know your product offerings inside out and upside down. You know what the benefits are, why they’re better than your competitors’, and where to find them on your website. Can the same be said for your customers? 

With attention spans growing ever shorter, customers who have to search long and hard for products on your website - or worse, don’t understand your products at all - will soon give up and go elsewhere. Avoid this outcome by carefully considering the experience of using your website from your customers’ point of view. 

In particular, consider the following questions: 

- Is it clear what your website sells?
- Is the website easy to navigate? Can you easily find products you’re interested in?
- Does the website hold customers’ attention and draw them through from one page to the next?
- Is it fun to use?
- How quickly does each page load? Slow loading times will cause many customers to drop out and look elsewhere. 

Don’t forget to optimize your content for all browsers and devices. As many as 56% of eCommerce sales were made on smartphones or tablets in 2022, yet 84% of consumers report difficulties with completing a transaction on their mobile device, giving much room for improvement. 

  1. Make product pages visually appealing

Brick and mortar retailers go to great lengths to showcase their products to their best advantage as customers browse the store. Your eCommerce store needs to do the same. Go for a clean design that allows your products to be the star of the show. 

Catch customers’ eyes with enticing photos and an attractive layout; hold their attention with captivating text, listing the product’s attributes and selling them on the benefits. Don’t forget to include technical details such as size and color to avoid disappointment when the product arrives at the customer’s home. 

  1. Add prominent add to cart buttons

Consumers won’t be able to add products to their cart if it’s not obvious how they can add them. Make sure your Add to Cart button is placed on the page in a location where customers can see it without having to scroll or search for it. You may even want to include two - one at the top of the page, and another after the product description. And why stop there? Consider including an ‘Add to Cart’ button on the category page under thumbnails of the product image as a shortcut, so that customers can add products they’re interested in without having to go to each product page individually. 

As always, design is key. Experiment with different button locations, sizes, and colors to see what works best for your target audience. 

  1. Include customer testimonials

The success of eCommerce has been phenomenal in recent years. In 2021, eCommerce accounted for 14.2% of all sales in the United States, and that figure is set to rise to just shy of 22% by 2025. Sadly, it hasn’t all been good news. Along with the rise in online sales there has been a rise in online scams and low-quality products, making customers wary of handing their hard-earned money over too easily. Testimonials help to overcome these concerns, putting potential customers minds’ at ease about what exactly they will receive. 

Online marketplaces like Amazon and Etsy showcase reviews, helping customers make informed decisions about their purchases. Do the same by including a review section under your products, or by publishing testimonials prominently on your website. Add in an Add to Cart button nearby to really drive that rate up.  

  1. Optimize your related product recommendations

With so many products available online at just the click of a button, it can be time consuming for customers to wade through the multitude of options served up by the algorithm. Helping them to find exactly what they are looking for by optimizing related product recommendations will increase the likelihood that they’ll add it to their cart, rather than looking elsewhere. 

What is a Good Add to Cart Rate?

So you’ve benchmarked your add to cart starting rate, and taken steps to drive it up. The question remains, how good is your cart rate really compared to the standard? 

As with all things eCommerce, there is no one-size-fits-all answer to what your add to cart rate should be. Globally, add to cart rates are thought to hover somewhere around 9-18%, but even that number varies. Some say the average in the United States is 10%, while others, citing data from eCommerce experts, reckon it is closer to 3-4%, with a rate of 8-10% being considered good. 

Ultimately, there’s only one way to truly track where your add to cart rate should be, and that’s by comparing your rate directly with that of your competitors. Until now, accessing that sort of information was difficult and costly. That’s where Varos comes in as a game changer. 

With Varos, you can anonymously benchmark KPIs such as Add to Cart Rate against others in your industry, letting you know exactly where your business stands, how well you are already doing, and where you can push further. 

Best of all, it gives you the data in real time, allowing you to finally know whether the trends you’re seeing in your own data are the result of changes you’ve been making – such as altering your website design to drive up your add to cart rate – or are due to wider market trends out of your control. 

Want to know more? Simply head to Varos.com and check out what we can offer you.  

Tweets

Chase Dimond | Email Marketing Nerd 📧
@ecomchasedimond

Bottom line: I’m recommending Varos to you all because it’s FREE (for now) and it’s already added a ton of value for myself and my clients.Check it out 👇

Social Savannah
@social_savannah

I would definitely recommend checking out Varos. With Varos you can easily see how your peers are performing, for free. You get insights into not only TikTok Ads benchmarks, but also similar data for Facebook Ads, Google Ads, and more. #VarosAmbassador

jason wong
@eggrolI

Varos allows thousands merchants to upload anonymize marketing data across meta and google and aggregating it to show what the average is across different categories and ad spend

Cody Plofker
@codyplof

With varos.com, I can see exactly how our performance across channels stacks up against our competitors in our space.

Barry Hott ☄️
@binghott

Compare your ad performance to benchmarks of companies just like yours, anonymously.
I would've killed for this tool years ago and now it's here and oh it's free. Amazing.

Ron Shah
@obviceo

I've been seeing some content about @Varos_com so we decided to check it out.

One underrated feature of theirs is the Shopify Benchmarking, which is FREE btw.

Literally impossible to access this data anywhere else. Check out what we're seeing at @my_obvi 👇

William Harris
@wmharris101

I'm loving what @Varos_com is doing with providing much more relevant benchmarks for #ecommerce... especially since it shows that we are absolutely DOMINATING @Elumynt on #facebookads!

This is in the Baby and Children vertical.#fbads #ppcchat #retail #dtc

Chase Dimond | Email Marketing Nerd 📧
@ecomchasedimond

Bottom line: I’m recommending Varos to you all because it’s FREE (for now) and it’s already added a ton of value for myself and my clients.Check it out 👇

Social Savannah
@social_savannah

I would definitely recommend checking out Varos. With Varos you can easily see how your peers are performing, for free. You get insights into not only TikTok Ads benchmarks, but also similar data for Facebook Ads, Google Ads, and more. #VarosAmbassador

jason wong
@eggrolI

Varos allows thousands merchants to upload anonymize marketing data across meta and google and aggregating it to show what the average is across different categories and ad spend

Cody Plofker
@codyplof

With varos.com, I can see exactly how our performance across channels stacks up against our competitors in our space.

Barry Hott ☄️
@binghott

Compare your ad performance to benchmarks of companies just like yours, anonymously.
I would've killed for this tool years ago and now it's here and oh it's free. Amazing.

Ron Shah
@obviceo

I've been seeing some content about @Varos_com so we decided to check it out.

One underrated feature of theirs is the Shopify Benchmarking, which is FREE btw.

Literally impossible to access this data anywhere else. Check out what we're seeing at @my_obvi 👇

William Harris
@wmharris101

I'm loving what @Varos_com is doing with providing much more relevant benchmarks for #ecommerce... especially since it shows that we are absolutely DOMINATING @Elumynt on #facebookads!

This is in the Baby and Children vertical.#fbads #ppcchat #retail #dtc