Ok, we get it already! Checkout optimization is important. The average cart abandonment rate is 70% and so on and so forth.
The question is, what are you going to do about it? There are so many ways you can start optimizing your checkout right now to reduce cart abandonment and make more sales. We’ve written about them over, and over, and over again.
All you need to do is start. In this post, we’ve got 5 Conversion Rate Optimization experts telling us their favorite quick wins to optimize the checkout. When you implement these suggestions and see incredible results, you’ll never stop optimizing!
Motivate your users!
Most optimizers try to reduce friction and remove barriers in checkouts. But there is another option: Try to motivate users. For example, Booking.com is cheering to its customers “Congratulations, you found the cheapest room in this hotel!”
We did something similar on a client’s shop and received a 16.3% conversion rate uplift. There are a lot of ways to motivate users and our research from hundreds of a/b-tests shows, that it has a 5x higher uplift potential compared to reducing friction.
Andre Morys from Web-Arts
Run Iterative Tests
I’ve run hundreds of tests on eCommerce checkout pages. From 1 step checkouts to 4 step flows, I’ve realized there are never quick wins.
Of course, there are tests we run with all clients but they don’t always perform in the same way.
- Deemphasizing the promo code
- Removing Extraneous Navigation
- Testing Trust Seals
- Testing a Return Policy
- Testing CTAs
- Testing Social Proof
After running hundreds of these tests, and seeing mostly inconclusive results, we realized there are no “Quick Wins”. Our most successful clients see wins when they understand iterative testing and go into these tests knowing they will have to go through 4-5 iterations before seeing a WIN.
Luiz Centenaro from Experiment Engine
Use Local Currencies
I have many quick wins I love testing to optimize a checkout funnel, but one of my favorites “hacks” has to do with currency. It is such a simple thing to do and has had a major impact on every test we’ve run. The idea is that you present the product’s pricing in the local currency of your potential customer. By identifying the geographical location a visitor arrives from, you can quickly show their local currency. Here’s why it works:
- It gives customers a quick way to evaluate the cost without the need to calculate the difference. Saving time for your customer is extremely valuable.
- The fact that you are able to personalize the experience for your customer increases social proof and trust.
A quick win for everyone involved 🙂
Talia Wolf from Conversioner
Build Trust And Relieve Anxiety
Checkout funnels are one of the most impactful areas you can optimize. And most checkouts fail to continue to support the sale, they simply ask for your billing address and credit card. My quick tip here is to continue to sell by adding supporting trust marks, guarantees and testimonials right in the cart. There’s no reason why these elements need to only be on your sales pages.
But it’s also worth approaching the problem in reverse. How do we reduce cart abandonments to increase conversions?
A poorly designed shopping cart or some other deficiency within the cart during the checkout process will lead to cart abandonment, but, that is not always the best place to start conversion rate optimization at the cart level.
Abandonment problems, usually start further upstream. Most visitors leave the cart because their questions were not answered prior to entering. In other words, they entered the cart prematurely because the previous page did NOT relieve their psychological buying anxiety.
Bobby Hewitt from Creative Thirst
Be Transparent About Shipping Costs
It’s so tough to pick just one, as always. My gut reaction to “quick” is always to cringe a bit, knowing that conducting sufficient research usually runs counter to the C-suite’s “hurry up and get results” mentality. That said, looking at how to be as transparent as possible about shipping costs up front is probably the winner for most B2C sites.
Assuming we focus on the answer within the B2C segment, we have several data points that are consistent among many checkout processes. We still never assume anything and make sure that everything is validated. When addressing a question like this, there is never a clear and concise answer that covers every scenario.
We consistently find in our usability tests that the biggest areas of checkout abandonment exist in places that you wouldn’t necessarily first expect. Trust elements and a complicated checkout process pack a pretty good punch but come in lower on the list. The top issues always seem to revolve around extra shipping costs and forced account creation. These top four issues continually combine for over 60 percent of abandoned checkouts on sites that we have worked with.
Almost 35 percent of the population (according to several combined surveys) attribute their bailing from the checkout process to additional costs, such as for shipping, taxes and any other fees, being too much. That means after they got over the trust issue of “should I buy from this site” and decided to proceed to the checkout process, the additional costs completely superseded all trust that had been solidified during the customer journey.
Furthermore, if you really dig into the data, the numbers are not surprising about how that “penalty” scars the user for life in terms of dealing with a specific brand online. They almost never come back. But it’s a problem that could have been completely avoided.
One consideration or exception to note is customers in the B2B e-commerce segment. For that subset of users, shipping costs are typically not deal breakers. The highest points of friction and anxiety typically include ease of search and site speed, as well the inability to create a purchase order. Often in B2B, however, there aren’t as many online vendors to choose from.
Jeremy Smith from JeremySaid
Start Optimizing Now
The suggestions above are tried and tested ways of optimizing your checkout and reducing cart abandonment rates. All you have to do is pick one and implement it in your checkout. And when that’s done, move on to the next!
If you find that the eCommerce platform you’re using makes it hard to optimize your checkout, it might be time for you to consider switching platforms. A checkout that you have full control over is far more profitable than one that your eCommerce platform controls.