Ask any ecommerce retailer which performance metric concerns them the most, and you’re likely to hear shopping cart abandonment rate somewhere in their top five. It’s estimated that about seven out of ten online shopping carts are abandoned by shoppers.
However, even armed with that information, many ecommerce business owners tend to focus on optimizing the front end of their websites with attractive webpage designs, site experiences, and product merchandising. While that’s an effective way to get customers browse and find products they want, it’s usually not the solution to cart abandonment. More often than not, it’s the site’s checkout page that could use some improvement.
Let’s take a look at some of the most effective ways to optimize the checkout experience for your online customers to improve your sales conversions.
#1 – Obtain Shoppers’ Email Addresses Early in the Process
No ecommerce business converts 100% of their users. However, you can increase your percentage when you grab an email address from potential buyers early in the checkout process. Then, you have a way to reach out to those abandoned cart users with reminder and promotional emails.
Try this: Ask for users’ email addresses before they choose whether to checkout as a guest or create an account for future purchases. That way, even if they checkout as guests to avoid creating an account, you have a way to reach them should they abandon their carts.
#2 – Make Your Checkout Page Simple and Distraction-Free
The key to checkout pages is to keep them as simple as possible, making every step clearly visible to the shopper. You should strive to only include things that are necessary and helpful to the buyer and eliminate anything that clutters the page.
Try this: Remove all unnecessary clutter and make next steps and call to actions very clear to the user. Include only the fields that are absolutely necessary for collecting customer information, using auto-fill where possible (for example, allowing users to simply check a box to use their shipping address as their billing address without re-entering the data). It’s also helpful to use a progress bar so the customer can see exactly where they are in the checkout process.
#3 – Make Mobile Checkout Easy
More buyers are using their smartphones, tablets, and other mobile devices to make online purchases. Don’t neglect your mobile checkout process when you working toward reducing cart abandonment and increasing conversions. The mobile checkout experience should be just as fast, if not faster, and easy as a regular website checkout experience.
Try this: Clutter needs to be minimized as much as possible on mobile checkout pages, eliminate everything that doesn’t help you process the order. Customers should have a clear understanding of what the next steps are. Try to keep fields that have to be filled in and buttons that have to be selected in the thumb zone, so the process is easy to complete with one hand. Also, offering mobile payment options can improve the customer experience and generate more conversions.
#4 – Make Sure Your Website Loads Quickly
There is an expectation now for website speed. Users are likely to simply click off and visit another page if your site doesn’t meet those expectations. Research shows that internet users expect sites to load within two seconds. When it takes longer, they will often abandon those pages. Additionally, when users have difficulty reaching a site, they are more likely to never return to the site at all.
Try this: To ensure that your customers move through the checkout process quickly, test your site speed and identify any issues that need to be resolved.
#5 – Display Trust Signals
When customers make it to the checkout page of an online store, they often think about the security of the website – especially when it’s time to add their payment information. Entering credit card information online is a sensitive issue for many purchasers. You need to display trust signals and seals on the checkout page to let your shoppers know that they can feel comfortable providing sensitive information on your site.
Try this: During the checkout process (and throughout the entire buyer’s journey) display information and seals that show you, your brand, and your website can be trusted. Consider these options:
- SSL Certificate and mentioning a secure shopping experience
- Logos of the payment options available (Visa, MasterCard, etc.)
- Include customer reviews and ratings
- Clear and visible customer service policies (shipping, returns, etc.) and customer service help options
- Any other business accreditations (Better Business Bureau, Google’s Trusted Store Seal, etc.)
Final Thoughts about Checkout Page Improvements
The checkout page of your online store is one of the most important parts of your website. It’s there that sales conversions are made. If customers are abandoning their shopping carts, you’re missing out on sales. Don’t let your website cost you money. Streamline your checkout page to make it more convenient, user-friendly, and trustworthy for your customers. Try making the above improvements to your checkout page to optimize your site, reduce cart abandonment, and boost your sales.
Did you try and of these ideas? How did it affect your abandonment percentage? Let us know in the comments.