Turn conversion into a quick win by making checkout the easiest part of the sales process. We are all guilty of having an online shopping cart full of items we want, but just can’t push ourselves to buy. To improve conversion rates and reduce checkout abandonment, improve your e-commerce experience and perfect your checkout process.
Over the past few years, e-commerce has been growing at an exponential rate. Ecommerce sales had already been greatly increasing year after year, but with the introduction of COVID19, e-commerce sales have skyrocketed, making online shopping the new normal and first stop for many shoppers.
So what is the standard checkout process
The checkout process is a series of steps that a customer must follow in order to to purchase an item or items from their shopping cart. This includes every action the customer will take from putting the item in the cart to proceeding to checkout. An efficient process will have a smooth user experience and consist of the following steps:
shopping cart > billing info > shipping info > shipping method > preview order > payment > confirmation
Checkout begins when the customer exits the shopping cart by proceeding to purchase the item(s). This will be done through a call to action (CTA) likely named “buy now” or “checkout”. Next, most sites will give the option to sign up or log in. This will encourage an account to be created specifically for your site. For a returning customer, they need not reenter their billing/ shipping information. This prompt will be followed by the consumer having to enter their billing and shipping information if they skipped the previous prompt to sign up. Offer the option (with a checkbox) to use the billing information as the shipping address if they are the same. This saves the shopper valuable time. Finally, allow the customer to preview the order to ensure all their information is correct before they confirm their purchase. The finalized sale is the end of your funnel and has resulted in a conversion!
Why are customers abandoning cart?
There are many reasons why customers may be ditching your checkout. We have outlined a few for you to try and tackle this Holiday season, and decrease that abandoned cart rate.
Unexpected Charges: Many customers will abandon a cart due to charges they did not expect. This is one of the biggest reasons a customer will not follow through with a purchase. To avoid this, be transparent about the price of an item right from the beginning. You never want a customer to second guess their purchase.
Forced Account Creation: While offering a sign up/ login CTA is a great option for returning customers, it can deter a one time customer from their purchase if they are forced into the action. Add the sign up CTA as an option for those who plan on a return to your site, but make it easily avoidable for those who are not interested.
Complex Checkout Process: Customers are looking for a fast checkout process when shopping e-commerce. Online shopping is often done for convenience so an overly complicated checkout process is likely to deter customers from a transaction.
Site Performances & Errors: User experience is everything when it comes to e-commerce. Site errors, slow loading times, and unresponsive pages will not only result in an abandoned cart, but likely an angry customer as well.
Inadequate Payment Options: A popular reason many customers will abandon an e-commerce transaction is due to a lack of payment options available to them. Customers want to pay with their preferred payment method, so the less options available, the lower your conversion rate will be. More recently you can add Apple Pay as an option, which will automatically fill in the billing and shipping information. This payment option creates an extra speedy checkout process and decreases the time the consumer may otherwise spend second guessing their purchase.
Tips to perfect the checkout process
Once you understand why your customers may be leaving, you can work to keep them from doing so! To address the issues mentioned above, make the checkout process faster, more reliable and work to stop them from exiting last minute.
prepare for high traffic
Make sure to test your site to ensure a fast checkout process that can handle the traffic of a busy holiday weekend. Perfecting your checkout is an ongoing process, and you should integrate analysis and improvements regularly to increase conversion rates.
keep it simple
Simplifying the checkout process is a great way to encourage customers to complete their checkout. Minimize the amount of clicks it takes to purchase the item. Optimizing a one page checkout is found to greatly reduce checkout abandonment. Clear call-to-actions will also reduce the chances of a customer leaving due to confusion.
Unfortunately, in today's world, many people are subject to online scams. To ensure a purchase, you must make your customer feel safe in purchasing from your site. Providing adequate security measures is essential to customers and will let them know their financial information is safe.
don't draw attention to the discount code
Be careful when adding a discount code to your checkout page. While discount codes are great for those who have one, it can deter a customer who doesn’t as they may believe others are getting a better price. Do not ditch the discount code box all together, but maybe make it less prominent as those with a code will seek it out.
In need of additional strategies for your business to make the most of this upcoming Black Friday/ Cyber Monday weekend? H&C Inc. is here to help. Contact us today!
AUTHOR: Abbey Hills