We’ve all experienced visiting a website and going through their products, but then end up leaving the site when we were faced with the checkout page. Some e-commerce websites just don’t provide a smooth and easy shopping experience for their customers.
Aside from ensuring that you have the best products and your website has great design, you should also ensure that you have what’s needed to make the last part (the sales transaction) go as smoothly as possible. But How?
Avoid these five checkout mistakes:
1. Requiring people to create an account
One of the biggest mistakes e-commerce websites make is requiring buyers to register an account before they can complete the purchase.
When you ask people to create an account, they need to fill multiple fields and they may even have to confirm their email to complete the registration. All these steps could be barriers to potential customers seeing the checkout process through.
Asking them to login to their email server to verify their email address would also be a distraction. One way to combat this would be to use an email validation tool.
Make sure that you have the option for customers to buy from your online store as a ‘guest’ and set this as the default.
2. Having unnecessary fields on forms
Upon checkout, people still need to fill in forms even if they’re not asked to create an account. This is necessary to get all the vital information from your customer. What is unnecessary, however, is having unnecessary fields that only take up time.
To ensure that your customers don’t find filling up forms on your website tiresome, you should remove non-payment or non-shipping related questions. You can also add tools such as predictive address validation to auto-fill the billing and shipping information.
3. Checkout flow not optimized for mobile devices
As many people increasingly prefer mobile devices to browse the internet and shop online, you should make sure your checkout flow is optimized for mobile. If your checkout isn’t optimised, you risk losing customers. You don’t want to miss out on this growing market as mobile shopping is taking up a large percentage of sales for e-commerce retailers.
4. Long or confusing checkout process
All the time people spend browsing and choosing products goes to waste if your checkout process is too long or confusing. Especially if your checkout involves going to multiple pages. People will abandon your website even if they were minutes away from making a purchase.
So what’s the ideal checkout length? The ideal is one page to check orders and to fill in billing and shipping information.
5. Limited payment options
The more payment options available, the more likely customers are to complete the checkout process. Make sure you cover the major credit card options like Visa, MasterCard and Amex. Don’t forget PayPal and other third party methods.
If, however, you can only offer limited options, you need to be transparent about the payment solutions that you don’t accept, before a customer is too far into the process.