It’s a question I often see asked in many Facebook groups and forums.

Common headlines I always see look like:

  • “HELP! Traffic but no sales?”
  • “What to do? Many visitors but no orders?”
  • “Why is no one purchasing my product?”
  • “How do I improve my conversion rate?”

There are several reasons why people might not be buying anything from your online store. Since all the answers you see on the internet might make the solution to the problem unclear, I decided to create this article and put all possible solutions on the same page!

The article will be structured in three parts and will be based on the ecommerce purchasing funnel:

Ecommerce purchase funnel

I’ve structured this article in a way so that you can identify what part of the purchase funnel can be improved for your store and can easily find solutions to improve your conversion rate!

Some of the solutions will be focused on a Shopify store, but remember that almost all solutions are applicable to almost any online store.

So, if you’re using a Shopify alternative for your store, this article will also definitely help you!

I have provided solutions for the following steps.
What to do if you have:

  • Many visitors, but few add to carts
  • Many add to carts, but few initiate purchases
  • Many initiate purchases, but few purchases

But how do you know what good or bad conversion rates are?

What are the standard percentages in the purchase funnel?

You’re looking for a solution because people aren’t buying (enough) from your online store. But to get to the solution, you will first have to identify the step(s) in the ecommerce purchase funnel that can be improved.

I’ve already given these steps above, but how do you know what “many” and “few” are?

To give you a guideline, I’m going to tell you which conversion rates you should aim to get so that you will be able to look at your online store’s analytics page and compare these rates to yours.

Here is my advice for the general conversion funnel rates you should aim to get:

  • View Content -> Add To Cart: 8-10%
  • Add To Cart -> Initiate Checkout: 50-60%
  • Initiate Checkout -> Purchase: 50-60%

I’ve based these percentages on my own dropshipping experience and on ecommerce conversion studies such as a study on the average add-to-cart rate and the average conversion rate.

Anything below can often be improved, and anything above means you’re doing great!

Shopify online store conversion rate example

To show you how to calculate the conversion funnel rates for your store, I’m going to give you an example using the image above, which shows the conversion rates from a Shopify store:

  • View Content -> Add To Cart: 7.37%
    (The percentage next to “Added to cart”)
  • Add To Cart -> Initiate Checkout: 152/275=55%
    (Divide “Reached checkout” sessions by “Added to cart” sessions)
  • Initiate Checkout -> Purchase: 84/152=55%
    (Divide “Sessions converted” sessions by “Reached checkout” sessions)

As you can see, in the example above, there is still some improvement room in the step “View Content” to “Add To Cart”, but the other steps are doing good!

Now that you know which part of the article you should look at, let’s start with the first step!

Tip: Don’t forget that you can still read through the whole article, because there might be some tips that you will still be able to use and improve your conversion rate!

What to do if you have many visitors but no add to carts?

Your product is getting many views from website visitors, but (almost) no one is adding the product to their cart. Why is that?

To improve your add-to-cart rate, try to check the following things:

1. Check if your product is in stock (on Shopify)

This mistake is pretty obvious, and I hope that you won’t find it in your store!

If the product isn’t in stock, visitors won’t be able to put it in their cart and will see a sold out button:

Shopify sold out button, Why is no one buying from my online store?

To prevent this from happening, keep track of your inventory on Shopify or turn on the option “Continue selling when out of stock”, which you can find on the product editor page on Shopify.

Continue selling when out of stock option Shopify

2. Increase your visitor’s trust

Don’t look like a standard dropshipping store that seems like it’s made in one day.

With more and more customers being aware of what dropshipping is, it’s increasingly important to come over as a real brand.

If you’ve got one of the following things on your store, try removing them, and you will probably see an increase in add-to-cart rate:

  • Low-quality AliExpress images or images with watermarks that don’t correspond to your business
  • Direct copies of AliExpress descriptions
  • Empty collections
  • Spelling or grammar mistakes
  • Lots of popups
Bad product description example
How your perfect product description should NOT look like

If these things don’t help, you can also try to set up trust badges and see if that helps to increase your trust.

As I said, try to remove low-quality product images. It’s better to have two high-quality product images than two high-quality product images with another six blurry product images.

If you’re having a hard time with getting high-quality product images, check out this article -> How to Get Awesome Product Images When Dropshipping?.

Tip: To avoid having spelling or grammar mistakes, installing an extension such as Grammarly can already help a lot. For more information, check out this article here!

3. Check your website’s loading time

Learn how to do Shopify store speed optimization

A frequent reason why people leave a product page is its loading time.

47% of consumers expect a website to load within 2 seconds.

Take a look at the image below, and you will be convinced that loading times are essential for your online store:

Page loading time effect on bounce rate

So, go ahead and test your website’s loading time using a tool like GTmetrix. If your loading time isn’t that good, check out this article to see how to improve it!

4. Set up your standard online store pages

Standard pages for an online store like a refund policy, a shipping policy, and a contact us page can really increase your add-to-cart rates.

Many people will be looking for things like shipping times, refund possibilities, and may have questions before they are willing to order the product.

Standard pages for a Shopify store in footer example
Source

So, make sure to have the 10 standard pages for an online store set up to make the most out of your traffic!

Luckily for you, we have an article containing all the standard pages you will need and it even shows you how to add them to your store.

5. Try lowering your product’s price

When no one puts your product in their cart, your selling price may simply be too high.

Either many people know that the product can be bought elsewhere for cheaper, or your product just doesn’t have the perceived value to be sold at your price.

Pricing strategy illustration and associated elements

As you can see, the perceived value is important in your pricing strategy. But don’t forget about other aspects such as your audience and your costs.

To find out more about finding your perfect product selling price and everything you will need to know about pricing, check out this article -> Dropshipping Pricing Strategy: The Definitive Guide.

6. Set up a sticky add to cart button

When you have a long product page, adding a sticky add to cart button can help to improve your add-to-cart rate.

Instead of scrolling all the way up, visitors will be able to see and click the add to cart button at all times!

A sticky add to cart button basically works as a call to action that constantly reminds the visitor about the next step he or she should take. Studies have found that adding a sticky add to cart button can increase your sales by up to 8%.

If you have a Shopify store, then adding a sticky add to cart button can easily be done by installing one of the many available sticky add to cart button apps.

Shopify sticky add to cart apps

For more information regarding the optimization of your add to cart button, check out this article.

What do to if you have many add to carts but no initiate checkouts?

You know that your visitors are interested in the product because you have an excellent add-to-cart rate, but why are so few people continuing to the checkout?

Here are some things you should try and check to get more people to initiate their checkout:

1. Try to target a different audience

You might be targeting an audience that, for example, rarely purchases products online but does frequently add them to their carts.

This can be caused by a few things, such as targeting a country that doesn’t spend much on ecommerce purchases on average. I recommend checking out this article to see the best & worst countries to target as a dropshipper!

Or, maybe you’re using Facebook Ads and you have set up “Add to cart” to be your conversion event instead of “Purchase”. By doing this, Facebook will send you visitors that like to add many products to their carts, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are going to purchase them as well!

Facebook Ads add to cart conversion event

2. Check if the shipping fee is shown in the cart overview

High shipping costs is the number one reason why people abandon their carts.

But, some people will also leave their carts if they can’t find the shipping fee before checkout.

An easy way to show the shipping fee in the cart is by offering free shipping.

Just head to “Shopify dashboard -> Online store -> Themes -> Actions -> Edit languages”.

Then, head over to the “Cart” tab and change the corresponding “Taxes and shipping at checkout” text to mention that you’re offering free shipping.

How to include free shipping message in the cart Shopify

Depending on your theme, the method to change this text can vary slightly, and this text will often appear just above the checkout button in your customer’s cart.

If you’re only offering paid shipping options that depend on your customer’s region, you can also add a shipping rates calculator to your cart. Click here to learn how to do that.

Shipping rate calculator in Shopify cart
Source

Another option is to install an app like this one to show your customer their estimated shipping costs based on their IP location.

3. Let your friends and family try to place an order on your store

Online shoppers have a short attention span and will abandon their cart if the process is too time-consuming or complicated.

You’ve created the store, so it makes sense that you might think that this isn’t necessary. However, someone who sees your store for the first time might have trouble in a place you don’t see or expect.

That’s why it’s always a good idea to ask someone to try to go through your checkout process and ask if they have any feedback to make the process simpler afterward.

4. Don’t force your customers into creating an account

According to a study by eConsultancy, 25% of visitors will abandon their shopping cart if they are forced to create an account.

Forcing customers to create an account before they order can really hurt your conversion rate.

When people see something they like, they want a fast and straightforward checkout experience and don’t want to waste time on creating an account.

To let your customers make an order without having to create an account on your Shopify store, simply follow these simple steps:

  1. Go to “Settings -> Checkout -> Customer accounts”
  2. Check the box “Accounts are disabled” or “Accounts are optional”
How to disable customers required to create an account Shopify

That’s it; you’ve just improved your conversion rate!

What do to if you have many initiate checkouts but no purchases?

You are seeing many visitors add your product to their carts and initiating their checkout process. But for some reason, very few or no people actually purchase your product.

In this part, I will be going over some of the things you should check and try to get more people to finish the checkout and order your products!

Continue reading to find out how to improve your conversion rate!

1. Do a test order and check if your payment processors work

This is such a shame, but it happens.

Some people spend hundreds of dollars on advertising, getting many initiate checkouts and people trying to purchase their product.

They just don’t know that people can’t actually purchase the product because the payment processors on their store aren’t set up correctly!

So, if you’re experiencing many people entering the checkout but aren’t getting any purchases (or only purchases from a part of your available payment processors), make sure to check if all your payment processors work.

How to test your payment providers and gateways on Shopify
Source

To do this, you can refer to Shopify’s manual, which will perfectly explain how to do this in different ways.

2. Check your tax and shipping rates

Make sure that your tax and shipping rates are set up correctly.

In other words, make sure that your customer doesn’t experience problems like:

  • Not being able to buy an item because of incorrectly set up shipping zones
  • A sudden increase in total price because of a hefty tax rate shown at the end of the checkout process
  • A sudden shipping rate at the end of the checkout process that is much higher than previously communicated

If your customer experiences one of these problems, the chances are high that they will abandon the checkout process, which is why it’s crucial to make sure that these things are not happening.

You can refer to this page by Shopify, which will explain the general steps you should take to set up your tax rates correctly.

Taxes United States Shopify

And here, you will be able to find a manual by Shopify that will explain everything related to setting up your shipping settings.

Note: Interested in learning everything you will need to know about taxes when dropshipping? Then check out this article!

3. If you’re offering a discount, check if it works

Customers won’t like it when they’ve made all the effort required in the checkout process, only to find out that the discount code you were offering does not get applied to the final price.

Often, customers will just get frustrated at your store and leave the checkout process.

So, make sure that all of the discounts you are offering, even those in your abandoned cart emails or SMS messages, are set up correctly and are working as they should.

4. Check if you’re offering enough secure payment methods

It’s essential to think about which payment gateways you’re going to offer your customers before you start advertising.

It’s best to offer two or more different payment gateways so that your customers will be able to use the one they’re the most comfortable with.

But, you will also need to think about things like if the payment gateway fits with the countries you are targeting, if it supports dropshipping, and if the transaction fees aren’t too high.

Luckily, we’ve already made an article that covers the 7 best payment gateways for dropshipping!

So, go ahead and check out if you are currently using the best payment gateways available. It will definitely save you time since you won’t have to do any research yourself!

The 7 Best Payment Gateways for Dropshipping Stores in 2021

Conclusion

That was it!

In this article, I have covered a total of 14 things you should check if no one is buying from your online store.

Some seem obvious, but you will be surprised how many people don’t check them. And maybe you haven’t even thought about the others before!

Either way, I hope that at least one solution on this list will help you improve your conversion rate and make some extra profits.

If you’ve liked this article, I have great news for you:

We have two more articles on the blog that will go over similar issues you are currently experiencing, and they will both cover different solutions to the problem!

Here they are:

Or you can take a look at this article, which covers 11 awesome tips to get your first dropshipping sale.

I hope that you will learn even more by reading those articles!

Good luck with getting more sales, and if one of the things in this list has helped you to do that, it would be great if you could let me know by leaving a comment down below!

Want to Learn More?

Author

Hey! My name is Patryk and I've been dropshipping for 2+ years now! After being exposed all the time to dropship "gurus" trying to sell their courses and learning from my mistakes, I decided to help build Do Dropshipping and make all information you need to succeed in dropshipping available for free to everyone!

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