There are endless studies out there that suggest that offering free shipping is the single best thing you can do to lift conversion on your online purchases.
- When you promote “Free Shipping” in your marketing, it gets attention and makes people more likely to find something they like.
- Shipping charges are most likely to be added in later stages of the checkout process, which means that price that consumers saw until that point was lower. When the added charge knocks the price up, it’s a turnoff, and often the drop off point for what would have been a completed sale.
I think #2 is the bigger reason. And in my opinion, if shipping charges were listed up front instead of at the end of the checkout process, you would lose fewer customers. I don’t think it’s the actual cost of shipping, but the increase in price that occurs which triggers consumers to abandon the checkout process.
And I want you to test it for me. Instead of showing the regular list prices of your items online and adding shipping on during checkout, add the cost of shipping to the list prices of your items and make shipping free. I’m willing to bet your conversion rate will go up.
Give it a try. What have you got to lose?