In some ways, eCommerce is the easiest way to run a retail business. All your items are clearly displayed and customers can mix and match to see what works best for them. However, for many consumers, shopping online is a casual exercise. They enjoy looking around and placing things in their carts, but they don’t really want to follow through. Luckily, you can minimize the chances of your shoppers abandoning their carts, and all it takes are a few simple tweaks.
Give your buyers a nudge
The simplest thing you can do is install a ‘buy now’ or ‘pay now’ button. It not-so-subtly nudges customers to complete their transaction. Keep the checkout design as low-fuss as possible. It should have plenty of white space, a clear, legible font, and easy-to-follow payment instructions. Avoid distracting visuals so that the call-to-action button stands out. You can also offer an incentive for completion by creating a sense of urgency. For example, include a pop-up that offers a discount or free gift if they complete their transaction within a reasonable time, such as ten minutes or half an hour.
Don’t make them log in
Email marketing is one of the most effective methods of reaching and converting clients. That’s why many online stores ask customers to log in and create an account before they can make a purchase. This extra step will sometimes dissuade buyers, because it takes time, and also because they may be wary of giving out their details. Design your checkout page to allow guest check-out. After they have completed their transaction, then you can ask for their details. You can use it to give them a tracking number for their purchase. In order to do this, you will need your own merchant account, rather than a third-party account (such as PayPal, for example) that requires customers to create an account with them before they can pay you, and then log into that account every time your customer wants to pay you.
Make it easy to pay
The most common reason for abandoned carts is ease of payment. It’s a good idea to sign up with a payment processor that guarantees quick and easy card clearance. Ideal features include instant verification, multiple payment methods, and high-level encryption. It helps if the processor charges minimal fees, because this increases your profit margin. You can also pick a processor that offers an integrated shopping cart. Get the kind of payment system that works best with your website or online platform, and that is designed to promote checkout completion.
Show them how far they’ve come
Many online purchasers are impatient. In addition to having their cards approved right away, they want to know how long the transaction will take. Since time is relative, they might think they’ve been in your online store a lot longer than they actually have. You can reassure them by installing a progress bar. It shows them how far they are in their purchase process, and how much time or how many steps they have left. You may want the progress bar to appear only after the customer has already made significant progress. Using principles of gamification, small steps can be counted separately at the beginning of the customer’s progress, while relatively larger steps can be grouped together at the end, so that by the time they first see the progress bar when they are entering their payment information, they can have already completed four or five steps and have only one or two more steps to go.
For more information on how to optimize your checkout page to increase sales leads, or to sign up for a merchant account, please call (888) 924-2743 or go to Charge.com.