— September 25, 2017
Business owners spend so much time developing products and designing their online store to showcase them they often forget about the most important step. How to collect payment. For any online business owner having an optimized checkout experience is imperative. First and foremost, if you have a seamless checkout experience you’ll see a tremendous decrease in shopping cart abandonment. What does that mean? More money in your pocket.
According to a study done by the Baymard Institute – the average online shopping cart abandonment is a whopping 68 percent. The study goes on to say that almost a third of abandonment is due to a long and complicated checkout process. So if you’re an online business owner what can you do to fix this?
Here are five ways you can improve your checkout experience:
Less is Always More
When designing your online store it’s important to take a minimalist approach to your checkout flow. The more steps you put in front of the customer before the final screen the more complicated your checkout will be. If possible, utilize features like auto-fill in your checkout forms and reduce the amount of information on each page. The checkout flow should have little to no marketing material since it will only distract the customer from completing their purchase.
Offer Multiple Payment Methods
This largely depends on who you choose as your payments provider. The most popular payments solutions will nearly all offer multiple payment options for your customers. Nowadays customers are starting to adopt methods beyond credit/debit cards like mobile wallets, eCheck’s, and even cryptocurrencies. By offering multiple payment methods you’re also showing your customers you are making an extra effort accommodate their preferences. These little things go a long way when building customer loyalty.
Optimize for Mobile
When it comes to mobile shopping a streamlined checkout is even more important. That’s because you need to put your entire checkout flow onto a much smaller screen. Our mobile devices love to encourage multi-tasking which makes it a perfect environment for shopping cart abandonment. In order to optimize for mobile make sure you spend an ample amount of time designing your flow to the smaller screens. Additionally, you should look to offer mobile wallet payments like Apple Pay and Samsung Pay.
Create Sales Funnels AFTER The Sale
Nowadays it’s easier than ever to collect customer data and use it to optimize their shopping experience for future purchases. It’s common for online business owners to get excited by this and collect information too early. If I’m shopping on an online store for the first time I don’t want to create an account or signup for email alerts just yet. How do I know I even like the products?
The best place to gather this information and create additional sales funnels is at the payment confirmation page. Here you can ask your customer if they’d like to create an account or store their payment information for future purchases. You can even offer to send them a 10-15 percent off coupon on their next purchase if they opt-in. Avoid asking for this information during your checkout flow at all costs – it will deter sales.
Become the Customer
One of the best ways to genuinely improve your checkout flow is to put yourself in your customer’s shoes. You and your team should scan the internet for your least and most favorite online shopping experiences and draw inspiration from them. Start with the basics. Are you selling a good mix of products? Is your website well designed? Would you be inclined to make a purchase?
Most importantly try to work through your checkout experience. Try and eliminate as many steps as possible, it’s okay to be aggressive since you can always add steps back.
There’s no single solution to building the perfect checkout flow. That said, there are plenty of ways you can optimize the checkout experience for your customers. Odds are you won’t get it right the first time so definitely do a bit of A/B testing on different flows. If you use the five above tips I guarantee your numbers will increase.