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Why You Shouldn't Put Home Items in Your Online Shopping Cart

Keeping items in your online shopping cart may not be the best idea, especially at this time of year.
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Why You Shouldn't Put Home Items in Your Online Shopping Cart

Interior & Furnishings | Mary Ann Romans

Keeping items in your online shopping cart may not be the best idea, especially at this time of year.

One common practice when shopping online is to place products that you are thinking about purchasing in your online cart to hold them there while you think things over. This seems like a good idea, after all, you don’t want to forget how to find that particular item, if you do decide to buy it. 

Unfortunately, keeping items in your online shopping cart may not be the best idea, especially at this time of year. Ecommerce systems are quite sophisticated these days. Placing items in your cart and not purchasing them right away may actually hurt you in the long run. Here is why. 

First, let us get some statistics. According to a recent study done by Forrester, approximately 88 percent of people place items in a shopping cart and then abandon it. This is such a problem for stores, that they have put sophisticated systems in place to try to make you to buy those items. It is called retargeting, and aims to play with your mind to convince you that not making the purchase is a bad idea. Buyers who purchase home goods may be special targets, because they tend to purchase items of higher value. 

Some of the retargeting strategies include:

  • Temporarily making a lower priced item in your cart unavailable (only you see it as such), so you panic and purchase the other higher priced items in your cart. 
  • Showing you ads that promise free shipping, with a purchase price set higher than what you already have in your cart, not only encouraging to buy everything in your shopping cart but also to add on another item or two to make the deal. 
  • Adding you to an email list, subjecting you to frequent email advertisements.
  • Calls from a sales rep, usually for electronics, furniture and other big ticket items. 

To be fair, sometimes there is a benefit to leaving items in your shopping cart. You just might get a random coupon to encourage you to make a purchase. This is a called a coupon hack. Some retailers do this and some do not. So, if you are willing to risk dealing with the hassle of the other strategies, then go for it. 

Here is a list of some of the online stores that have been known to provide coupon codes when shoppers leave items in their carts, and those that absolutely do not. For example, you should never expect to see a coupon from Amazon as a result of an abandoned shopping cart. 

Online stores that usually provide a coupon when you abandon your cart:

  • Think Geek
  • Newegg
  • Bed, Bath & Beyond
  • JC Penny
  • Overstock
  • Williams-Sonoma
  • Home Depot

 

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