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Rethinking your Continue Shopping Button to Increase eCommerce Performance


The continue shopping button on your eCommerce website is an incredibly important feature and its use is many times over looked or under appreciated. Linked from properly it can contribute to increased sales or at a minimum reduce online friction for your customers, or on the other end of the spectrum it can drive your visitors away to your competitor’s website. How so? Imagine this real life scenario:

You are at your favorite brick and mortar store, you navigate the aisles looking for the first item on your list to purchase, you see it in all its glory on the shelf, you smile and reach out to pick it up and place it in your shopping cart-ah that was easy. But now you’re ready to find the next item on your list so you decide to continue shopping…but wait, POOF, suddenly you immediately placed at the entrance of the store again. You now have to navigate through the entire store again to find your next item. You find it, this time you’re not smiling, you place it in your cart, and you’re ready to get your next item. Again, POOF, you’re back at the entrance of the store.


How long would you be willing to go through this scenario – would you quit after the first time you were sent back to the entrance of the store? Would you rethink visiting the store next time you have to go? Would you purchase the item that you have already have in your shopping cart but no way even attempt to get the other items you need?

This scenario happens over and over again when you link your continue shopping button to your home page.  The user adds the first item to their shopping cart, they are presented with a continue shopping button, they decide to look around more, but where you link this button to can decide how their experience will fair.

Link from the continue shopping button properly and truthfully the user may never consciously even notice (however, their actions will display that they subconsciously do), but link from it incorrectly and you could hurt the chance for an increased order size, lose the order totally, or even possibly lose the customer.

So where can you link to from it? You can link back to the page they were on when they chose the item they added to the cart. You could give them a few choices of where they want to go such as the page they were previously on (the product page); the category listings page, and here even the home page. Some sites even use an AJAX pop-up letting the customer know that the item is in their shopping cart – in this scenario the customer doesn’t even have to leave the product page they are on. Using this presentation style you could still even present the customer with multiple options to choose where they want to go next.

Now you know why where you link to from your continue shopping button can mean so much to your eCommerce websites performance and to your wallet.


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