Select Page

The biggest factor behind the likelihood of a shopper returning to an e-commerce site and making a purchase is previous history with the brand, according to a new study [download page] from Monetate. But simply targeting re-engagement budgets at the largest segment of shoppers who didn’t make a purchase on-site won’t be the most cost-effective solution, as the report details.

To arrive at its conclusions, Monetate analyzed the behavior of millions of shoppers, sorted by their previous on-site behavior.

The research shows that while shoppers who bounced from the site made up the largest share (39%) of initial traffic, only 16% of bounced shoppers returned to the site, and of those just 1.9% made a purchase upon return.

By contrast, while those who abandoned a cart represented a far smaller group (10% of initial traffic), almost half returned to make a purchase, and an impressive 9% of those converted upon their return.

This suggests that aiming for the biggest group to re-engage isn’t the wisest tactic; instead, the first target for retargeting and re-engagement should be abandoned cart shoppers. (Abandoned cart emails tend to have relatively high deliverability and response rates, and could be a good option.)

While it may seem logical to first target shoppers who had abandoned a cart (a common practice among retailers), Monetate’s analysis shows that other shopper segments are also worth re-engaging.

For example, shoppers who had viewed a product but not placed it in a cart (29% of the initial traffic) are also ripe for retargeting. Among this group, while relatively few returned (36%), the conversion rate for those who did return was 3.8%.

Monetate tallied the traffic share against the return rate and conversion rate upon return to arrive at the following success count by segment:

  • Abandoned Cart: 434 conversions per 100k visitors;
  • Viewed Product: 393 conversions per 100k visitors;
  • Browsed But No Product Views: 261 conversions per 100k visitors; and
  • Bounced: 118 conversions per 100k visitors.

Diving a little deeper, Monetate further examined where shoppers left their initial visits. Looking specifically at those who viewed a product (a ripe opportunity per the above analysis), Monetate’s data shows that those shoppers who viewed the product and exited from the product page had a far higher return rate and conversion rate upon return than those who viewed a product and then exited from the category page. That could indicate a customer experience problem for those who left from a category page.

As such, as Monetate’s analysts, note: “it’s not enough to invest only in figuring out whom to retarget: that effort must be matched by an investment in rethinking the on-site experiencer for those that do return.”

The full report, based on an analysis of 37 million return purchases, can be downloaded here.

Feel Like You're Always Playing Catchup?

Stay ahead of the curve with our free newsletter. It’s fast. It’s factual. And it’s clear

marketing charts logo

Error: Please enter a valid email address

Error: Invalid email

Error: Please enter your first name

Error: Please enter your last name

Error: Please enter a username

Error: Please enter a password

Error: Please confirm your password

Error: Password and password confirmation do not match