Conversions often become a matter of life and death for ecommerce websites. We know many of you might be generating a high volume of traffic to your website and we are quite happy about it.
But the thing is, traffic isn’t the only factor responsible for sales. Regardless of how much traffic you see on a daily basis, if your sales numbers don’t match up, your site is probably good for nothing. You don’t want that.
So, is your ecommerce store translating all that traffic into conversions?
Okay, you don’t have to answer that now. Our point is, when you create an online store, you expect it to make money. But if it won’t, it’s probably because your website visitors aren’t converting, at least not at a pace you want them to
Now, we are not implying that your products aren’t good enough or anything. That might not be the issue at all.
However, your checkout process might be.
Yes, people often neglect the checkout process and veteran e-marketers are well aware of this. In fact, 7 out of every 10 people abandon their shopping cart on the ecommerce website right before finalizing that purchase.
Why do you think that is? Let’s take a look
- “The shipping cost caught me by surprise”
- “I was asked to create a new user account”
- “I was conducting research to buy later”
- “I was concerned about payment security”
- “The checkout process was long and confusing”
- “I couldn’t find any coupon code”
- “There wasn’t any express shipping available”
- “Website was crashing down/showing error”
- “The return policy wasn’t satisfactory enough”
- “I couldn’t find any customer support”
When you create an online store, you need to make sure the checkout process is fast, easy and secure without cutting any of the corners, especially not the ones mentioned above.
After all, this is the part which fulfils the bottom line of running your online business i.e. to make sales and earn profits.
With that said, here are ten solutions or ways to optimize your checkout process, reduce abandonment rates and boost your website checkout conversions.
Tips to optimize your checkout process
1. Unexpected Shipping Cost
Hidden costs are the primary reasons customers leave your ecommerce website without making the purchase. And this includes everything from shipping costs to taxes to ‘required complementary items’ etc. It leads to immediate annoyance, propelling prospects to feel remorse for purchasing.
TIP - Transparency matters most to today’s online shoppers and is crucial for your store’s success. So, your best course of action would be to fully disclose all costs from the outset. Also, if the shipping cost is too much, you can always bundle it into the product and offer ‘free shipping’.
Still seems expensive? Try ShipKaro, a StoreHippo initiative that offers an end-to-end solution to all your shipping needs. Here, you can easily avail shipping at discounted rates which, in turn, will let you offer free shipments to your customers.
2. Having to Create a New User Account
When you create an online store, it becomes your duty to provide convenience, get things done quickly and give them instant results. And having to create a new account proves to be an unnecessary source of friction often resulting in abandoned carts.
TIP - Well, we think it's quite obvious. Before your first-time buyers complete their purchase, don’t force them to create an account with you. Offer them guest checkout. You might even want to spend some time looking for more such friction points that cause your customers to spend more time than necessary.
Here, StoreHippo can greatly benefit you. It comes with a social login feature that makes it easy for your customers to login without troubling themselves with creating an account. More importantly, it comes with a guest checkout feature that enables first-time visitors to complete their purchase without having to create an account.
3. Conducting Research to Buy Later
While running an ecommerce website, you simply cannot eliminate all kinds of cart abandonment such as this one. Often times, consumers like to browse multiple products across shops for the price, quality etc. and add them to cart so as to easily reference items.
TIP - Though there isn’t much you can do here but there is still room for improvement. Since customers are so fond of evaluating products on price, you can implement a price match guarantee pop-up ensuring customers to buy from you.
An effective ecommerce platform is one that comes with features that help you in chasing down customers. For instance, StoreHippo allows your customers to add items to their wishlist to be reviewed later which makes it easy for you to follow them up with personalized discounts in the near future.
4. Concerns about Payment Security
Failing to implement proper security measures when you create an online store is one of the major reasons for cart abandonment. The factors that get your customers suspicious include no SSL certificate, design flaws, missing images, and outdated layouts.
TIP - Assuring your customers that you are a trustworthy store isn’t that hard. The easiest way is through different forms of social proof such as offering your full contact details (including phone numbers and bios), product reviews, customer testimonials, endorsements, etc.
Moreover, to enhance the trust of your online shoppers, you can choose to offer multiple payment gateways, StoreHippo might be a good choice here as it already comes pre-integrated with all the popular payment channels to help you through. You even get to offer COD (Cash on Delivery) to help win customer trust.
5. Long and Complex Checkout
Nobody likes long and complex checkout processes. They just seem so annoying. Ecommerce websites with unnecessary forms make the overall process confusing while making the customers uneasy. Another major reason contributing to cart abandonment.
TIP - The key here is to keep things as simple as possible. Only include fields that are absolutely necessary. Remove any unnecessary clutter. Also, make the CTA buttons on the page very obvious and clear. Follow these steps and you are good to go.
Your other alternative would be to choose an ecommerce platform with in-built features to assist you with easy checkout. Try StoreHippo, it offers a single page checkout on all possible devices, thus making it fast and easy to place orders.
6. Cannot Find a Coupon Code
There are customers who only chase deals. It means if your ecommerce website isn’t offering coupons or promotional codes, they will just find someone else who does. Also, if the coupon code search bar is placed near the checkout, it just gives the impression that they are paying too much.
TIP - If your online store is capable of offering coupons and promotional codes, its best to auto-apply them. It's also beneficial to enable your cart to pass through parameters through the URL, giving your customers the freedom to apply via emails and pop-ups.
Another useful tool to add to your ecommerce store would be a discount engine. Psst... StoreHippo gives you a powerful discount engine that can create a variety of coupon codes for your customers. What’s more, it can even send it out to them using email, SMS or push notifications and that too in real-time.
7. No Express Shipping Available
You might not have noticed while creating an online store but customers do care a lot about shipping. Here, the important factors that lead to cart abandonment are the cost of shipping and the speed of shipping.
TIP - The thing is, customers are willing to spend more if your store promises to deliver the goods on time. Do not hesitate if you need to charge more for express delivery. Your customers will ultimately thank you for providing this option.
That’s why it’s extremely vital for your online business to have a trustworthy delivery partner such as ShipKaro which offers multiple shipping options to deliver goods as fast as possible as per the customer’s need. And since it covers over 26,000 pin codes across India, you don’t have to worry about order cancellation again.
8. Website has Errors or it Crashes Down
You might not have heard of this issue in relation to the checkout process on your ecommerce website but that doesn’t mean it should be ignored. Website errors and crashes are some of the major roadblocks to completing the purchase, also giving your customers a sense of insecurity.
TIP - Make this your daily habit to visit your site, starting from homepage to checkout page, ensuring that there are no issues anywhere. You can also try this across a variety of screen sizes since online shoppers are becoming more and more mobile-savvy these days.
The thing is, every website crashes at some point. You simply can't avoid it but what you can do instead, is to devise optimised website and themes for your online store that makes shopping a seamless experience for your users.
9. Return Policy isn’t Satisfactory
Studies reveal that shoppers are always willing to spend more with a generous return policy. Unfortunately, many businesses while creating an online store put unnecessary limits on their return policies such as restricting too much time or charging for the return, etc.
TIP - The solution? Simple, make the return policy flexible. Start by offering a free, 30 days shipping. Then you can give them the option to either return or refund the purchased goods. Compare this to the added costs of this policy and see how it works out for you.
And if it seems too much of a hassle for you, you can always opt for readymade solutions. Among the many amazing features offered by StoreHippo, you can use partial or full refund in order to create a flexible return and refund policy for your store. You can even use ShipKaro to pick up the return items.
10. Lack of customer support
Lastly, no customer support to turn to in case any problem arises. This lack of support is detrimental to cart abandonment rates for your ecommerce website. Customers expect service and convenience and it's your responsibility to offer them such.
TIP - Offer live chat support to your customers. It’s an important step as customers are more likely to buy from you when you offer them the chance to resolve any queries they have in real-time. What’s more, you can use customer queries into your marketing material, thereby making the product pages even more effective.
StoreHippo can greatly assist you in this regard. Here, you can avail a variety of customer engagement tools and software that can be integrated into your ecommerce platform, thereby giving your customers the most WOW experience and any support they might need.
And there you go!
These are some of the top tips to optimize the checkout process when you create an online store. If you are looking to optimize other areas of your ecommerce store, check out our other blogs at StoreHippo.
And if you are looking for a ready-made solution that meets all your ecommerce needs, welcome onboard! Book a free demo with us to take a tour of what amazing features our ‘ready-made solution’ has to offer.