It is estimated that at least 70% of online carts are abandoned before any payment is being made. The reason for this is that customers consider the checkout process to be too complicated and the customer checkout experience is crucial and important. A clunky, drawn-out checkout process drives customers to seek business with rival stores. With mobile also accounting for a large portion of E-Commerce revenue, along with impulse buying, it is necessary for retailers to provide a more streamlined checkout experience.
By redesigning our checkout experience into one that is as simple as possible for customers, we can increase our conversion rates by as much as one third as well as increasing the average order value. This will also result in customers who are more willing to return to buy more and spread the word to friends and family.
Here are 6 key ways to improve the checkout experience for your customers.
1. Make it faster and easier to Capture and Verify addresses
Retailers lose out in revenue and reputation due to address issues. A number of factors, such as the number of keystrokes needed to enter an address, on mobile especially, are irritating for customers. Any errors that are made in the address, such as typos may also lead to failing deliveries, that lead to most costs. In addition, customers usually place the blame on retailers for missed shipments.
Some retailers manually check addresses after the receipt of an order or immediately after the form is submitted. In these cases, the customer is then alerted in case of errors and allowed to correct them. However, this also serves to irritate customers and leads to cart abandonment.
In order to solve this issue, we need to use an Address Verification Service, otherwise known as AVS. It auto-detects addresses as the user types and provides accurate suggestions of Zip codes and other identifying data. With a single click, customers can complete a checkout form. AVS also serves to eliminate typos and translate abbreviations, saving customers precious time and effort.
2. Offer a Seamless Payment experience
Account creation is a primary reason that customers will abandon cart at checkout. Amazon Pay is a service through which retailers can streamline the checkout experience for all their customers. This allows them to checkout using the shipping and payment information already present in their Amazon account.
Amazon Pay also helps retailers identify their customers sooner. By signing in early when reaching the store, it is possible to deliver a more engaging and relevant shopping experience according to the customer's interests.
According to a report by Salesforce, 75% of customers expect a seamless shopping experience across all platforms. Amazon Pay achieves this by offering a truly integrated payment experience.
3. Allow Flexible Payment options
It may not be enough to have a fast and seamless checkout method for your customers, It is also important to offer them the option of a number of payment methods. Allowing payment through well-known brands is one way to gain trust. Another method is to allow customers to pay for the product after they receive the delivery. Allowing customers to pay later through invoice takes the fear out of making a purchase.
For those customers that may not be able to pay the full amount upfront, either due to financial reason or preference, we can allow them to pay over time through monthly instalments. This allows us to convert customers who would have otherwise walked away due to the size of a purchase.
Offering methods such as pay by invoice or EMI allows us to broaden our customer base to accommodate those customers that wish for more flexibility in payment.
4. Protect your business from fraud while improving Customer Experience
Fraud is an unfortunate but common occurrence for online retailers. It is important not to alienate customers by rejecting their order due to fraud suspicions but it is also important for retailers to avoid chargebacks and fees. Sometimes customers may also be incorrectly declined even for a legitimate purchase due to faulty detection systems.
By authenticating customer identity, we can reduce the risk of fraud and also false identification. Advances in Machine Learning and Big Data allow faster and more accurate decisions and thus reduces the need for any manual reviews, allowing orders to quickly pass through checks to delivery.
5. Implement an efficient process for accurate Pricing and Tax Compliance
Hidden extra costs such as shipping, tax and other fees are one of the most frequently cited reasons for cart abandonment. Another is the inability to calculate total costs upfront. This is often due to the difficulty of calculating the correct tax rates.
Errors in tax calculations also make tax reporting a challenge, and will lead to damages for the retailers in case of an audit.
It is important for retailers to maintain a Cloud Solution for retailers to accurately calculate sales tax for shopping cart items. By automating the entire sales tax process, it frees up resources for the retailer.
6. Choose the right E-Commerce platform for scalability and innovation
It is estimated that for every 1 second of delay for a page to load, there is a loss of 7% in conversions. These delays are due to the inability of a platform to support faster load times and concurrent processes. Due to this reason, retailers are choosing to switch to cloud-based E-Commerce platforms, which have a number of experts that can deliver speed and quick load times. At this time, more than one-fifth of the E-Commerce providers have taken their core operations to the cloud. Advantages of a cloud platform include quick scaling and access to cutting-edge innovation in the technology as soon as they are introduced by the provider.
By implementing your store with an E-Commerce platform such as Magento, you have access to a wide range of features that can be tweaked to fit your unique requirements. In addition, there are various extensions that can be installed to provide further customization for your store.
With the customer selecting products and reaching the start of the checkout process, we have already won half the battle. It is up to us to then guide them through the rest of the process as quickly and painlessly as possible and thereby improve our conversion rates and keep customers coming back for more.