The better way to sell online

Patch the leaks in your online shop checkout process

Tired of seeing abandoned carts pile up? Find out more about the preventable causes of lost sales and the best ways to streamline your checkout process. There is no such thing as half of an order. Abandoned shopping carts combine the excitement of having provided a product that buyers are interested in with the disappointment that you did something to extinguish that interest along the way.

Nowadays, a great deal of research has been done for the top causes of cart abandonment. Many cart abandonment factors are beyond a merchant’s control, and have to be considered part of the psychological issues of doing business online. If a potential buyer is unsure if he is ready to purchase, or if he is using the shopping cart as a way to price check or build a wish list, there is little that your checkout process can do to convert that individual. But what about the other factors?

Here are the top major factors in the checkout process and how you can patch them with very easy changes.

Patch the leaks in your online shop checkout process

1. Avoid complexity

Our internet-induced short focus spans do no not suddenly disappear when we pull out our credit cards. A tedious, complex checkout process discourages potential buyers and threatens your sales. A one-page checkout order form is as simple as it gets, and it should be your first choice in combating the problem. However, since there is no other alternative to the need for multi-page information, the second best option is to provide checkout step indicators like ShopFactory 14 currently does. Steps such as 'Shipping > Delivery Options > Billing > Order Review > Order confirmation' mail keep buyers aware of the stage that they are currently finishing and how many steps they have left to go. See how you can edit the fields in your Shopfactory store.

2. Asking for too much information

In other words: lengthy forms that require too much information. Sure you may need this information for future promotion campaigns. But, believe it or not you will lose more leads than you gain by requiring birthdays, pet names, personal interests and other invasive information. Keep it stupid and simple! Only ask for the information that you need to get the product to the buyer, and autofill this information by activating Santu Express checkout (Read more about it here).

3. Shipping Costs

The top reason for abandoned carts—the biggest leak—is the cost of shipping. Even if a storefront makes no attempt to hide these costs, seeing the price at the end of the checkout process is the biggest mental obstacle preventing visitors from becoming customers.

This criminal is responsible for almost half of all failed transactions. The best way to patch this leak is by setting a threshold for free shipping. Yes, it may cut into your margins, but it is a smaller price to pay than a lost sale.

(Read more about shipping strategy)

If you offer free shipping for all orders above $100, you may find that visitors are more willing to pay that $100 if it means more products than they would have had if that total cost only covered a single product and its shipping. If you can’t afford to, then focus on adding value to the shipping in other ways, such as same-day shipping. Match added costs with added value.

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