The customer checkout experience is one of the most definitive factors that determine whether or not your customer will ultimately make their purchase. Unfortunately, it seems like a great number of merchants have overlooked this critical component of their online business.

Just look at the statistics.

According to the Baymard Institute, a study showed that the “average cart abandonment rate” was 69.82%. This was based on 46 different studies that contained statistics on overall e-Commerce shopping cart abandonment

Now, there were various reasons that were given for cart abandonment. They were as follows:

  • Shipping, taxes, and fees were too high (48%)
  • The site required the customer to create an account (24%)
  • Delivery too slow (22%)
  • Don’t trust the security on the website (18%)

It was also discovered that by improving the overall “checkout design”, a large-sized e-Commerce business can gain as much as a 35.26% boost in conversion rate. When you combine the overall e-Commerce sales of both the US and the EU, the losses at checkout amount to $260 billion of orders lost. This can be resolved by having a more optimized “checkout flow” and design. 

What Is Checkout Optimization?

Checkout optimization or “checkout process optimization” is a system that a business uses to increase their online retail store’s conversion rate. Their end goal is to reduce any distractions and foster trust throughout the checkout flow process. It is about steering every “shopper” towards purchasing and away from an abandoned cart. 

How To Optimize Your Checkout Experience

When there are billions of dollars left on the table, it is comforting to know that by just making some changes to your checkout experience, you can regain a considerable amount of revenue.

Here are some tactics you can use to optimize your checkout experience:

  • Accept guest checkout

While it is true that e-Commerce merchants need quite a bit of information from new customers, the truth is that obligating them to create an account causes up to 34% to abandon their cart. The bottom line is that customers want to purchase a certain product quickly and without any obstacles. 

Therefore, offer guest checkout or social checkout so that customers can complete their purchase, without having to enter any unnecessary personal information. 

  • Provide free shipping

According to a Forrester study, it was found that as much as 58% of shoppers worldwide expect “free next-day delivery”. In order to inform your potential customers that you want to meet their expectations, consider offering messaging that relates to shipping. 

You can also set a minimum amount to purchase in order to grant free shipping. Progress bars can be used throughout the checkout process to help customers exceed that threshold and be rewarded with free shipping. 

  • Offer multiple forms of payment and shipping options

Most customers who shop regularly online have their own preferred method of payment. They are known to abandon their shopping cart if they don’t see their preferred payment method. That is why merchants must do all they can to offer as many payment methods as possible in order to expand their customer base.

You can offer a variety of payment methods on your e-Commerce site. Here are a few examples:

  • Shop Pay and PayPal
  • Debit cards
  • Credit cards
  • Buy Now, Pay Later
  • Digital wallets: Apple Pay, Google Pay, or Samsung Pay
  • Use 1-Click Checkout

If you provide fewer steps to get your shoppers to the final buying process, that means that they will encounter less friction. With less friction, it actually boosts the chances of their converting into paying customers. 

Keep it as streamlined as possible, that way they will not change their mind and ultimately abandon their shopping cart. 

By using 1-Click checkout, your shoppers only need to enter their information once. Their personal information such as their shipping address, email, and credit card information will be stored. The next time they visit your retail site, their information will be auto-filled. 

  • Show your security badges

Customers are more concerned about online security than ever before. If a website seems sketchy, a customer will simply shop elsewhere. Shopify found that 17% of shopping carts were abandoned because a customer didn’t feel like they could trust the website. 

In order to boost your website’s “legitimacy”, consider displaying these security badges throughout the entire checkout process:

  • SSL certificates
  • Antivirus software logos
  • Money-back guarantees
  • Payment badges
  • Customer reviews
  • Lessen the form fields

When it comes to the checkout process, customers should not be forced to work harder in order to pay you money. In order to avoid a laborious checkout experience, consider lowering the number of fields on your checkout form.  Only ask to provide you with very basic information such as name, billing address, and credit card data. 

According to Baymard’s research, most e-Commerce websites only need about eight fields on their checkout form. However, it found that the average online retailer had as much as 12. These many fields had the tendency of discouraging customers from moving forward with the checkout process. Again, the final result leads to shopping cart abandonment. 

More fields tend to create more friction for shoppers. 

  • Provide live chat support

Frequently asked questions or (FAQs) can be answered through a chatbox on the checkout page. According to Drift.com, as much as 41% have utilized these tools of conversation in order to make their purchase. As much as 70% depending on chatbots in order to communicate with their favorite brands. 

An Optimized Checkout Page Is Everything

More than ever, customers are looking for the most seamless, frictionless online shopping experience an online store can offer. With a plethora of choices in today’s competitive market, they can easily walk away from a potential purchase if their online checkout experience is less than that. 

By implementing the aforementioned tips, you are ensuring that you provide the right experience for your shopper to not only make the purchase but to keep coming

Posted in Business Advice