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eCommerce Checkout Optimization – Best Practices to Try on Your Website

I was recently reading some shopping cart abandonment statistics and study reports, and I was shocked. Shopping cart abandonment is a real nightmare in eCommerce.

Yes, we haven’t met yet, but one thing I know for sure is that you are losing money, and data concurs with this statement.

Data from the Baymard institute shows that the cart abandonment rate now stands at an average of 69.82%. The rate is even higher for mobile users, standing at 85.65%.

Why does eCommerce Checkout Optimization Matter?

The checkout page is the one that will bring conversions to your website. Look at your eCommerce optimization page as the point where mere web visitors become your customers.

One of the lead causes of high cart abandonment rates is a poorly-optimized checkout page. It means that to deal with the menace of cart abandonment and boost eCommerce conversion rates, there is a need to optimize the checkout page.

But how can eCommerce checkout optimization be achieved? What secret weapon is used to get your customers to buy your products? Read on to find out more.

Ten Tips for eCommerce Checkout Optimization

You do not have to worry about cart abandonment anymore. We have compiled a list of proven tips to enhance your checkout process, minimize cart abandonment, and increase conversion rates. Without much ado, let us dive in!

1. Offer Guest Checkouts to Avoid Mandatory Sign-ups

eCommerce merchants would wish to acquire customers’ data (and there are many benefits of doing so). Customer data can be used to create excellent marketing campaigns.

However, it is important to understand that not all customers who buy from you would wish to be part of the marketing campaign. Although these customers might not be many, they might impact your sales.

The best strategy will be to allow the customers to skip the registration process. A guest checkout facility that allows customers to buy from you without registering or creating an account with your eCommerce website can be the right way to go.

Guest checkouts are one of the best strategies to optimize eCommerce checkouts and minimize cart abandonments.

2. Offer Free Shipping or reduce the Shipping Costs

One of the biggest deal breakers for shopping online is the issue of shipping costs. Baymard institute sites “extra costs” such as unexpected high shipping costs as the leading causes of cart abandonment.

According to Baymard, 48% of consumers say that one of the leading causes of their cart abandonment is unexpected shipping costs.

Whereas free shipping could be a bit costly for the business, offering free shipping is a surefire way of reducing cart abandonments. Otherwise, the extra amount added during the final checkout process will make customers unwillingly abandon their cart.

But you do not have to compromise your profits to offer free shipping. You can adjust the main product price slightly to absorb the shipping fee and keep the shipping at zero. It is a trick that has worked for my eCommerce store and will work for you.

3. Enhance Checkout Security

eCommerce checkout security is an important factor that determinants whether customers buy your products or abandon your cart.

If shoppers have a reason to believe that their security can be compromised by transacting with you, they will rather abandon the transactions. Implement a fraud management plan and solution to keep your customers’ data secure.

Modern shoppers are keen on security, especially after the surge in online financial frauds and data breaches. They have learnt to check the security of web pages by looking at certain security indicators.

One of the things customers will be looking at to ascertain the checkout page security is the HTTP/HTTPS status of the page. It is common knowledge that HTTP pages are prone to security threats while HTTPS is more secure.

A simple explanation behind the HTTP/HTTPS concept is that HTTPS has a secure socket layer certificate that enables encrypted communications.

With SSL certificates installed on the website, financial and sensitive information such as debit and credit card numbers shared between customers and web servers will be encrypted. Encrypted data cannot be compromised by malicious people.

An excellent eCommerce checkout optimization is using an SSL certificate.

You will need to buy SSL certificate and install it on your website like discounted single domain or cheap wildcard SSL or multi domain SSLand ensure the checkout page runs on the HTTPS protocol. And you do not have to spend much to initiate SSL encryption on your website.

4. Have Multiple Payment Options

One of the best practices for your checkout page is to expand your payment options for your customers. Having one or few payment options means the chances of your customers not having the payment option are high.

If customers do not find their desired payment option, they will resolve to abandon the cart. Customers do not have time to start creating accounts with the available payment options when they can pay for the same products elsewhere using their desired payment options.

Moreover, it is possible that one payment option might fail, and users might want to try out others. Customers also have their trust attached to different payment options. Some of the payment options you can use for your eCommerce website include the following:

• Credit cards

• Debit cards

• PayPal

• Google Pay

• Cash on delivery

• Skrill

• Payoneer

5. Use A One-page Checkout

A single-page checkout is another excellent way of optimizing your checkout process. This strategy helps to simplify the checkout process for customers by placing all fields and elements required for the checkout on one page.

Doing so will offer an easy and convenient checkout that can potentially increase conversion rates. I am not saying that multipage checkout is a bad thing. But one-page checkout always hasthe upper hand over its counterpart.

6. Make The Checkout Page as Responsive as Possible

Responsive checkout pages are the way to go. As you might already know, most shoppers rely on mobile devices for their online purchases.

As an eCommerce merchant, you must pay much attention to convenient mobile browsing to ensure that your web visitors have a seamless checkout experience both on desktops and mobile devices.

It would help if you eliminated all hurdles that could hinder the responsiveness of your checkout page. Make the checkout page compatible with mobile devices as much as possible.

7. Have a Mobile-friendly Checkout

Mobile devices are increasingly becoming tools for browsing products and making purchases. According to a report by eMarketer, mobile commerce sales hit $359.32 billion in 2021 in the US.

The same report projects the sales to rise to $728.28 billion by 2025, accounting for 44.2% of all eCommerce sales. You can ascertain from the below image.

To have a share of the lucrative market offered by mobile devices, you must ensure that the entire website is optimized for mobile.

More specifically, your checkout page should be optimized for mobile compatibility. Customers should not zoom different parts of the checkout page as this can easily lead to cart abandonment.

8. Minimize Form Fields

A complicated checkout process is not a nice idea since your customers often strain to pay you for their purchases. As a best practice for checkout page optimization, you should consider making the checkout process as flawless as possible.

And one way of doing that is by minimizing the number of fields on the checkout form. Ensure that you only stick to the essentials such as name, the billing address, and payment information.

According to Baymard’s checkout usability study, having a large number of form fields on the checkout page intimidates the customers and could invite cart abandonment.

The best thing to do is only to include necessary custom fields since more fields will only create friction for users.

9. Offer Live Chat Support

Shoppers often have questions concerning the next course of action they should take. If they fail to find answers to those questions, chances are they will not purchase and would resolve to abandon their carts.

To prevent shoppers from exiting, I highly recommend you offer live chat support to your customers. You can leverage the power of chatbots to answer their burning questions.

The 2020 State of Conversational Marketing Reportreveals that 41% of shoppers have used similar conversational tools to find solutions to their issues.

The same report shows that 71% of shoppers have relied on chatbots before. As a best eCommerce checkout optimization practice, ensure you implement the same.

10. Show the Checkout Flow

Online shoppers would love to know where they are up to with the checkout process. Using a progress bar to show users where they are in the checkout process would be a great idea. With a checkout flow, customers know how long they’ve left before confirming their purchase.

Conclusion

A successful eCommerce checkout optimization requires a wide range of strategies. These strategies should work in unison to improve customers’ shopping experience.

You must also note that optimizing your eCommerce store’s checkout process will not happen overnight. With the ten strategies explained above, you will be able to optimize the checkout page fast and improve your conversion rates to your desired levels.

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