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Seal the Deal

Easy solutions to keep your online customers from ditching their shopping carts during checkout

This story appears in the June 2004 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Despite widespread knowledge of the problem, shopping-cart abandonment continues to plague e-tailers. In fact, 52 percent of were abandoned last year, according to Geoff Ramsey, CEO and co-founder of e- research firm eMarketerin . While myriad reasons might explain why prospective customers ditch the contents of a shopping cart at the last minute or fail to click the final "Buy Now" button, experts say a key reason is that the checkout process often simply takes too long.

Waiting Game

That's what Steven Mckean, 35-year-old CEO and co-founder of BuyTelco Inc., has found. His Hollywood, Florida, company's Web site, which went live in 2000, allows consumers and businesses to enter their information and learn what high-speed Internet plans are available from cable and DSL providers in their neighborhoods. Clients can buy the plans from the site in a seamless transaction.

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