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7 Foolproof Strategies to Improve the Online Checkout Experience

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Many people like to browse online stores, add items to their cart and then transition to other sites, leaving their items behind. You can decrease cart abandonment rates in your online store by making the customer checkout experience seamless.

The checkout process is critical to the online shopping experience. After all the work you put into creating your product pages, the last thing you want is to lose out on sales because customers found the checkout process too cumbersome.

Related: Four Top Tips To Optimize Your Online Checkout

How can you improve your user checkout process?

Cart abandonment rates have reached 68.7% in the United States. Of course, some customers aren’t ready to make a purchase. It could be that the shipping costs give them pause, or they want to hang on to the item and simply buy it later. Others, however, may be dissuaded by the inconvenience of the checkout process.

With checkout optimization, you can capture a higher percentage of potential customers who are ready to purchase and build a friendly relationship with those who may want to return later.

Here are seven tips to improve ecommerce checkout impact.

Related: Selling Products Online? How to Build a Perfect Checkout Page

1. Make costs and fees clear upfront

Consumers always look for a bargain, especially in a tough economy. They definitely don’t want to feel like they’re being taken advantage of, so if there are additional fees you must add to the sales price, make that clear well before consumers decide to add an item to a cart.

For example, if you’re selling hotel rentals, make it clear upfront if there is a resort fee or other charges to add to the room costs. If you’re offering shipping, make the cost of each option clear in the shopping cart. That way, online visitors are more prepared when you show them the final total as they check out.

2. Give customers lots of payment options

Credit card payments are no longer the only way people pay for online purchases. Adding more customer payment options can improve the user checkout experience and persuade visitors to complete a purchase.

Options you might want to explore adding to your online store include the following:

  • PayPal/PayPal alternatives. Many customers hesitate to provide their credit card information online due to security concerns. Letting them pay using options like PayPal, Amazon Pay or Venmo can assuage those concerns.
  • Mobile payments. Many people use contactless payment apps on their smartphones to make purchases using apps like Google Pay and Apple Pay. The use of such applications is expected to double by 2025. You can capture a large chunk of customer purchases by making this payment option available.
  • Cryptocurrency. While some may question this type of currency, many others embrace it. In addition, many big companies like Home Depot, AT&T and Microsoft accept cryptocurrency as payment. Cryptocurrency is a good payment option if you want to close more cart sales.

Of course, your ability to accept different payment types depends on your point of sale (POS) payment solution and its adaptability.

3. Make your online checkout button easy to find

The checkout process starts when visitors add products to their carts. You can encourage them to continue through the retail checkout process by putting a big, bright add button next to product options. Make it large and unique enough to stand out from other page elements.

There’s no need to make things fancy, however. A simple “Add to Cart” or something similar is often enough to do the trick. Even better, add a second “Buy It Now” button that lets them purchase an item directly and bypass the cart entirely. That’s an excellent option for people who may want to buy specific items now while leaving others in the cart for later.

4. Be sure your site works the same on all platforms, especially mobile

The design of your ecommerce online store should be flexible enough to adapt to different screens. You must make the checkout experience quick and easy regardless of the device customers use.

Remember, buyers may start shopping on their phone and finish the purchase later on a laptop. You don’t want to lose a sale because you didn’t think to make the shopping cart function seamless on any device.

Related: SEO Mistakes you Should Avoid at All Cost

5. Ensure customer support is readily available

Glitches happen, and when they do, you need to ensure there’s someone there to address the customer’s concerns. Consider adding options like an online chat that connects directly to customer service. This method ensures customers can connect with someone right away. You can also add the option to send an email to customer service that thoroughly details any issues a customer experiences.

6. Ensure the user has a secure checkout experience

Customers who buy online should feel safe providing you with their payment information. Ensure you have protections set up to stop credit card fraud or attempts to steal information entered by customers. Your website should follow proper guidelines for checkout forms and use protocols like Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) to protect transactions.

If you have an app, you should also take steps to ensure that mobile checkout experiences go safely and smoothly. Make sure you provide information about your payment processor. In particular, having a big name handling your payments adds credibility to your company.

7. Utilize easy, passwordless logins

Customers might give up on a purchase if they need to go through verification processes like one-time passcodes (OTP) or multi-factor authentication (MFA) based on passwords. Going with passwordless authentication for your online store means one less piece of information customers have to remember and, therefore, means one less sticking point.

Instead of using passwords, visitors can authenticate their identity using biometrics and cryptographic keys stored on a device with one click. Going passwordless stops phishing and is a great way to remove a lot of friction from the online checkout process, thus contributing to checkout optimization. Passwordless authentication also makes it easier for users to log in or sign up for a new account.

Related: Passwords Are Scarily Insecure. Here Are a Few Safer Alternatives.

When it comes to online shopping, having a streamlined checkout process is critical for retaining customers and closing sales. Here are some tips to optimize your checkout experience:

  1. Be transparent about costs and fees up front so customers aren’t surprised at checkout.
  2. Offer multiple payment options to accommodate different preferences.
  3. Make it easy to find the checkout button, and consider adding a “Buy It Now” option.
  4. Ensure your website is mobile-friendly and functions seamlessly on all devices.
  5. Provide reliable customer support to address any issues or concerns.
  6. Ensure your checkout process is secure and protects customers’ payment information.
  7. Simplify the login process by implementing passwordless authentication to avoid cart abandonment.

By implementing these strategies, you can provide a hassle-free checkout experience that encourages customers to complete their purchases and keeps them returning to your online store.

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