As many offline retailers remain closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, more sellers than ever offer their services online, which makes it that much more important to get the checkout process right.
At the end of 2019, eMarketer projected a “moderation in growth rates vs. previous years,” forecasting a 12.8% e-commerce sales growth to $666.28 billion.
But nobody anticipated a year like 2020 and what it will mean for e-commerce for years to come.
Streamline & Simplify for an Easier Checkout Experience
Regardless of your industry and increasing competition, there are a set of guidelines you can follow to make sure you offer the best checkout experience to your buyers.
To offer the best checkout process, it’s essential to understand the key factors that prevent customers from going through with the process.
According to data compiled by Business Insider Intelligence, the most significant chunk of cart abandonment takes place at the payment stage (46%), and the rest is when the user is prompted to enter billing, shipping, or delivery details.
Everything you can do to streamline that process both in terms of design and actual information they have to fill out will go a long way toward simplifying the experience. To start, allow autofill on details like address and payment information. That will keep your customers from having to type too much. Also, if you will enable customers to change the number of items in their cart without leaving the page, that is an extra incentive for them to spend more.
Choose the Right Gateway
Choosing the right payment gateway for your industry is another vital factor in your customers’ experience. It is paramount to have smooth, reliable credit card payment processing throughout their customer journey.
Selecting your payment gateway goes hand-in-hand with picking the perfect payment processor. That can be incredibly difficult to find for businesses in high-risk industries. You want a company that is well-versed in the needs and regulations of your industry, potential obstacles, as well as the best ways to optimize your e-commerce business beyond the checkout process alone. Other factors to consider include:
- Integration of the payment gateway with your e-commerce platform
- Associated fees
- Data security
Feature “Guest Checkouts” in a Straightforward Design
What else can you do to improve the buying experience? Offer a guest checkout or a variety of payment options, including debit cards and eWallets (like PayPal and Apple Pay).
Your checkout process doesn’t exist in a vacuum, so it’s essential your overall web experience answers vital questions and serves to boost conversion rates—not just the checkout page. Something as simple as your eCommerce website design can be a big reason customers pick you when making their purchasing decisions.
Follow Best Practices
There are several best practices and ways to optimize guest checkouts to make the process a seamless experience for your buyers, such as:
- Keeping your checkout to one-page
- Reducing the total time it takes to fill out the checkout page—delays hurt here
- Allowing users to save information for later, so they don’t have to start from scratch
- Displaying trust icons to instill confidence in customers
Once you focus on the basics, streamline your internal checkout process, and partner with the right payment processor, you will be on the way to optimizing your overall sales funnel and providing the best checkout experience to your customers.