Optimizing Shopping Cart Product Recommendations: Cross-selling Tactics and Design Best Practices

Cart is the moment of truth but also an upselling opportunity. At the cart stage, personalized product recommendations play a crucial role in increasing Average Order Value (AOV) but without having a negative impact on conversion. By deploying SKU / variants, we make it even easier to increase the AOV.

Imagine yourself in line at a supermarket waiting for your turn for the cashier to ring you up. Even if you would be distractedly checking your emails and messages to pass the time, you can’t help but notice the point-of-sales displays full of candy, gum, soda, and chocolate. This tactic is used in supermarkets everywhere and also in some garment stores with to boost both average order value and profitability by enticing customers to increase their cart size with affordable, but often high-margin, add-ons and accessories while waiting in line.

The same tactic also works in an online environment. However, while it is very uncommon that a consumer would abandon their shopping basket or cart while standing in a check-out line at a store, it happens all of the time online, where there are no queues. That’s why the actual check-out process should be tuned down, streamlined, and made as convenient and simple as possible – especially on mobile devices. However, the cart page where customers can review their purchase choices before they move onto payment is a golden opportunity to push complementary products, pushing the average order value and profitability up.

4 Examples of “Add-to-Cart” Product Recommendations

In case you have an add-to-cart or mini-cart element, the process is fairly simple as seen in the example below. This example is taken from Sarah Raven and displays how visitors can naturally continue their shopping journeys through recommendations once they have added something to the shopping cart.

Depending on your preferred tactic, displayed cross sellers could be from affordable product ranges or items that are below the average cart item value – or you can let Artificial Intelligence handle it all for you by deciding what to display.

In the example below, Nicehair’s supplementary products can be added directly to the cart minimizing the chance of the customer having second thoughts and abandoning the cart.

In fashion, product variants, such as color and size, add yet another layer of complexity as shoppers commonly need to select the right colour and size. However, this is still perfectly achievable by mapping the variant details to Nosto. The end result could look like the example below (Grenade) in which a user can select the right color and size without leaving the cart page.

Design-wise, we are in awe of The Balm. Color variant selection is built seamlessly into the site’s overall look & feel.

The end result of deploying cart page cross-sellers is bigger basket sizes. Additionally, when customers can add the products to the cart there and then, without the need to route them through product pages, the risk of their exiting the site is minimized.

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