We have all had frustrating checkout experiences at our local brick and mortar stores. Between the long check out lines, limited selection of inventory, and the time, effort, and resources it takes to make it to a store, many consumers are turning to eCommerce and online shopping for its convenience.
But like the in-store shopping experience, how eCommerce sites are set up can also present the same frustrations that cause customers to abandon their shopping carts. What is it about checkouts that puts off people like this? Can there be a way eCommerce merchants can turn the checkout process into a memorable adventure that results in repeat purchasing?
The answer is yes, good readers, it is possible. There are a couple ways to stop making the checkout a procedure and start turning it into an adventure.
Assessing the Customer
Ample studies are available to prove that customers desire, even crave, a more personalized shopping experience. In a research conducted by AgilOne, almost 80% of clients said they’d want brands to supply them with some indication they are valued as customers. This might be through recalling details about them like their previous purchases, or simply by sending personalized emails using their tastes in mind using this consumer data.
There’s no use thinking that an automated system knows the specific person who’s checking out at a given point in time. However, companies are run by people, so it’s worthwhile to personalize the online shopping experience in different ways.
- About the landing page of your shop website, give clients the choice to sign up to get a discount voucher. This way, you’ve got their email addresses handy.
- Targeted ads are another means to stay in touch with prospective buyers. You may have noticed that if you browse through specific products online, advertisements keep popping up to the very same products. These are targeted advertisements and they’re there to remind you which you abandoned a shopping cart or didn’t make a purchase. Worded well, they can give a customer the impression that you’d like for them to come back and have another look.
How Long Should Checkout Take?
Convenience is an element of eCommerce that inspires customers to shop online instead of in-store. A good checkout experience is a mix of personalization and efficiency.
With online checkouts, merchants are combating two issues which are virtual opposites. On one hand, they want customers to sign up and to create an account. On the other, most customers don’t enjoy the lengthy process of registration that requires them to invest more time than necessary at checkout.
As an eCommerce merchant, you have to accept that a customer will only sign up with you when they want to. Thus, always have a choice of guest checkout. If someone doesn’t want to enroll, they can use the guest account to make a purchase.
Some products are bought more frequently than others. For example, you may buy clothes more frequently than a new barbecue. If you’re a merchant who does not have repeat customers for a while, you cannot expect your customers to sign up or create an account prior to making a purchase, because it would be a pointless and superfluous step that could cause them to abandon their carts.
Payments could be a huge pain in both online shops and retail stores equally. We may not think of it this way, but with every extra measure a customer has to take, the odds of them abandoning the purchase return. In physical stores, there’s the option of paying by cash or cards. But what happens when you set up a stall elsewhere? Is there a way to accept payments by card when your whole POS setup is not with you?
Online payment is the final stage of the decision-making process for customers. Up till payment, they have the option to cancel. As discussed, timing is of paramount significance in checkout. A retailer can’t afford to provide the customer too much time to consider his purchase. Provide a plethora of payment choices, especially for debit and credit cards and other electronic methods like digital wallets.
Offering many electronic credit card payment options in your checkout processes is tantamount. “In my opinion, the majority of check-out friction relates to payments and it is absolutely critical for merchants to offer any form of payment that the consumer wants. Ultimately the consumer drives the entire process, and should,” Paul Krueger, founder of popular payment processing solutions provider PayKings says.
Emphasize that your payment gateways are protected and secure. This gives customers a feeling of safety when transacting online. Obviously, in addition, it protects their privacy and sensitive information.
Suggesting similar or complementary items during checkout could be a gentle way to upsell and increase your profit margin. We want to indicate products to customers which they may like buying, but this shouldn’t seem like an exercise in selling more. Suggested purchases are one way to get folks to add more to their carts. Nevertheless, make sure that they are completely relevant.
You will find quite a few other aspects you’ll be able to look into to make checkouts smoother. In retail stores, they are more in your face than in online stores. Make sure your website and checkout procedure are mobile friendly. Don’t add things like shipping in the end — be upfront about additional fees if any. Possessing a progress bar that shows customers how many steps there are in finishing checkout is also an option. With just a few tweaks, you can stop being another number from the cart abandonment statistics.