The Subtle Art of Optimising Your Checkout Page

There are many considerations when it comes to growing your eCommerce site. You deliberate on issues of user appeal, the quality of images, pricing, and, of course, marketing outreach.

 

One thing many site owners don’t think about enough about is the checkout page.

 

If you look at some of the statistics on conversion, you’ll realise that the final step in your visitor’s journey is the one fraught with the most danger in terms of losing them. Clearly, optimising your checkout page should be an integral part of your strategy.

 

The good news is that many of the issues that might plague your checkout page are easy to remedy.

 

Nine Tips to Optimise Your Checkout Page

 

In some cases, using A/B testing will help you determine the right choice in layout or design. Sometimes it’s a matter of adding more to your retargeting efforts – much of which starts on your checkout page.

 

Take some time to evaluate your page to see where changes might benefit your overall sales. The following strategies offer ideas to help improve areas you might have overlooked in the past.

 

  1. Add or Improve the Position of Security Badges. It’s imperative that your customers trust your site. While there are many factors that go into the overall trustworthiness of a site, adding a security badge on your checkout page gives them an extra boost of confidence before they offer payment information. If you already have a security badge, make sure that it’s visible on every device. Data shows that fear over security is one of the top reasons people fail to complete a purchase.
  2. Limit the Fields Customers Need to Fill Out. It’s tempting to try to get as much data in your fillable forms as possible. The checkout isn’t the place to inundate customers with a lot of extra work. It dissuades people from impulse purchases and might annoy them with the process. Make sure the forms your visitors fill out before purchase are as simple as possible.
  3. Don’t Force Registration Prior to Checkout. Many sites prioritise membership registration. This gives you an easy way to contact visitors. But making registration mandatory before purchase means that you’re missing customers who don’t want to register with your site. Online shoppers are savvy. They realise that sites are trying to obtain their email address. Ideally, you only want to collect email addresses when the visitor is open to receiving communication. Otherwise, they will often opt out of your future email marketing and it may negatively impact their view of your site.
  4. Notify Shoppers of Extra Charges BEFORE Checkout. Shipping and taxes can add up. Many shoppers don’t do the math while they’re adding items to their cart. Seeing a much higher checkout amount than they anticipated often causes them to leave the site. Site owners are finding inventive ways to combat this scenario. In some cases, eCommerce sites are rolling the shipping fees into the overall price of the items. They can then advertise that they offer free shipping throughout the site, which is a big incentive for shoppers. Another method is by offering shipping options prior to the checkout page. This gives them a choice in the priority and price of their shipping and allows them to calculate the total cost before paying.
  5. Offer Options to Save Cart Details. You might offer an option of adding items to a wishlist from the checkout. No amount of optimisation will prevent every customer from rethinking their purchases before conversion. Giving them an easy way to return to the same items increases your chance of them coming back to finalise the purchase later. If you don’t have a wishlist feature on your site, you might consider adding an option allowing them to email their items before leaving the page. Some customers might need more time to consider a purchase. Your objective is to make the process convenient without making them feel rushed.
  6. Allow Editing on the Checkout Page. Allowing your customer to remove items from their checkout and change the quantity means that their process is simpler. The easier you make the experience, the higher your customer satisfaction soars.
  7. Offer a Button to Continue Shopping. Sometimes customers will get to the checkout page and decide that they’d like to go back for an item they didn’t add to their shopping cart. If you don’t have a simple way to do this, they might not navigate back. Offering the easiest method to continue will make them more likely to extend their stay and purchase more.
  8. Test Button Placement, Colors, and Text. You’d be surprised how much difference the right design can make in conversion. Choosing buttons, designs, placements, text size and font – these things all seem subjective on the surface. But you’d be surprised how often the wrong design can confuse customers. Remember, you already know how to do everything on your site. A new visitor needs everything to be as easy to navigate as possible. When in doubt, use A/B testing to check if your current design can be improved.
  9. Test or Remove Pop-Ups. Pop-ups are still a popular way to keep visitors on your page and get them to sign up for deals or mailing lists. They’re also pretty annoying. Many users have pop up blockers that won’t allow them to work. Another problem with pop-ups is that they can be cumbersome for mobile users. On certain devices, they make navigating to the checkout too difficult, costing conversion. This is an area you want to test. You might find that offering an opt-in for the mailing list or allowing visitors to add themselves to updates about specific items works better than your pop up.

 

Optimising your site and checkout page is an ongoing process. New tools become available that might be advantageous to you. Your visitor base will sometimes have specific preferences that work well for you. Ideally, you want to make sure that you’ve removed as many obstacles for your customer as possible.

About PJ Taei
PJ Taei is the founder of Uscreen, an easy-to- use VOD platform which enables video creators of all kinds to sell videos online. He has over a decade of experience working with brands and helping them make money online leveraging videos. https://www.uscreen.tv