Abandoning purchases mid-checkout is more common than you think. Irrespective of the quality of the product and the discounts you are offering, getting a store visitor to complete the checkout process is easier said than done.
The checkout process is where many brands lose potential customers, but the good news is that you can optimize it for conversions.
In this post, we will share valuable tips to help you improve your store's checkout process and ultimately boost your conversion rates.
What is the store checkout rate?
The website checkout rate or store checkout rate is also commonly known as the conversion rate. It represents the percentage of visitors to a website who complete a desired action - in the case of an eCommerce business, this refers to completing a transaction to make the purchase after adding products to the cart.
The checkout rate is calculated using the formula:
Checkout Rate = (Number of Completed Checkouts / Total Number of Visitors) x 100
For example, if a website had 1,000 visitors in a month, and 100 of them completed a purchase, the checkout rate would be:
(100 / 1,000) x 100 = 10%
A higher checkout rate indicates that a larger percentage of visitors are successfully converting into customers, which is generally a positive sign for an e-commerce business. However, it's essential to continually monitor and optimize this metric to improve the overall performance and profitability of an online store.
What is the average checkout rate?
As of today, the average checkout completion rate stands at 47.0%.
To position your eCommerce store among the top 20%, your target should surpass the 62.6% mark, while falling below 30% categorizes you in the bottom 20%.
The average checkout rate can vary significantly depending on various factors, including the industry, the quality of the website, the effectiveness of marketing campaigns, and customer behavior.
Some industries with unique characteristics or products may have higher or lower checkout rates. High-value or luxury goods may have lower checkout rates because customers take more time to consider their purchases. On the other hand, stores with essential everyday products may have higher checkout rates.
How to optimize for a higher checkout rate?
While the checkout process may vary based on what you sell and who you sell to, here are a few things you can do to optimize for a higher website checkout rate:
1. Incorporate a progress bar
Implementing a progress bar in your checkout process is a crucial step to guide customers through the checkout journey. It provides a clear visual representation of the steps involved, reducing anxiety and uncertainty.
Divide the checkout process into logical stages (e.g., cart review, shipping details, payment), and display the progress bar prominently, showcasing the steps completed and those remaining. Ensure each step is easily accessible and actionable for a seamless user experience.
2. Opt for a single-page checkout
Streamline the checkout experience by condensing the steps into a single, well-organized page. Present all necessary information, including cart contents, shipping details, payment options, and order summary, on a single screen.
Avoid unnecessary clicks and page reloads, providing a cohesive and frictionless checkout experience. A single-page checkout reduces abandonment rates and encourages swift completion of the purchase.
3. Offer guest checkout
Offer a guest checkout option to streamline the process for first-time customers or those who prefer not to create an account. However, during guest checkout, collect essential information like email addresses for order updates and marketing purposes (with consent). Strike a balance between gathering necessary data and minimizing friction to enhance the checkout flow and encourage conversion.
4. Leverage automation features
Leverage automation wherever possible to expedite the checkout process. Implement auto-fill features for common information like addresses and payment details, reducing manual input and saving time for customers.
Employ predictive text for form fields to assist users in completing their information quickly and accurately. These automated features enhance user convenience and accelerate the checkout process, boosting conversion rates.
5. Engage immediately after checkout
Don't let the customer slip away after they complete their purchase. Engage with them by sending a thank-you email or displaying a post-checkout message.
Express gratitude for their order, provide order details, and include links to related products or content that might interest them. This immediate post-checkout engagement can encourage repeat business and foster a sense of connection with your brand.
6. Streamline review and editing
Enable customers to review and edit their order details effortlessly before finalizing the purchase. Display a summary of their cart, including itemized lists, quantities, and prices. Provide intuitive edit options, such as modifying quantities, removing items, or updating shipping information, without forcing them to backtrack through the checkout process.
Make the review and editing process smooth and intuitive, ensuring customers can make necessary adjustments without frustration.
7. Emphasize the value of loyalty
Highlight the significance of loyalty and its rewards during the checkout process. Make sure customers know that their patronage is appreciated.
You can do this by displaying loyalty program benefits, offering exclusive discounts, or even showing a message like "Thank you for being a valued customer" after successful checkout. Recognizing and rewarding loyalty can motivate customers to complete their purchase and return in the future.
8. Highlight sign-up benefits
Encourage users to create accounts by showcasing the benefits of doing so prominently. Mention advantages like faster checkout for future orders, order tracking, and personalized recommendations. Clearly communicate how signing up can enhance their shopping experience and save them time in the long run.
9. Feature diverse payment options
Diversify your payment options to cater to a broader audience. Include popular methods like credit/debit cards, digital wallets (e.g., PayPal, Apple Pay), and even buy-now-pay-later solutions if feasible. Display recognizable payment logos during checkout to instill trust.
Offering a range of payment choices ensures customers can complete their purchases using their preferred method, reducing cart abandonment due to payment-related issues.
10. Provide subtle recommendations
Offer subtle product recommendations that complement the items in the customer's cart. Limit these recommendations to one or two relevant products to avoid overwhelming the customer. Showcase these suggestions discreetly, perhaps in a sidebar or a non-intrusive banner, allowing customers to explore additional options without distracting them from the checkout process.
11. Offer secure payment information capture (for repeat customers)
Simplify the payment process for repeat customers by securely storing their payment information with their consent. Implement secure payment tokenization or use reputable third-party payment gateways that prioritize security.
Clearly communicate the benefits of this feature, such as faster checkouts, without compromising security. Reassure customers that their data is protected to build trust and encourage future purchases.
12. Promptly display errors
Timely error notification is critical to keeping the checkout process smooth. Detect and display errors, such as incomplete or incorrect form fields, as soon as they occur. Use clear, user-friendly error messages with specific guidance on how to correct them. Ensuring that errors are addressed promptly prevents user frustration and keeps them on the path to completing their purchase.
13. Provide gifting options
Cater to customers looking to buy gifts by offering gifting options during checkout. Include features like gift wrapping, personalized messages, or the option to mark items as gifts. Make it easy for customers to specify gift details and delivery instructions.
Gifting options not only enhance the customer experience but also increase the likelihood of completing the purchase, especially during holidays and special occasions.
14. Show a comprehensive cost summary
Transparency is key to building trust during checkout. Display a detailed cost summary before the final purchase confirmation. Include itemized costs for each product, shipping fees, taxes, and any discounts applied.
Allow customers to review and verify their total charges, ensuring there are no surprises. Transparency instills confidence and reduces cart abandonment due to unexpected costs.
15. Establish an organized FAQ section or link
Anticipate and address customer questions and concerns by setting up a well-structured Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section. Provide information about shipping times, return policies, and other common queries.
Ensure the FAQ section is easily accessible from the checkout page with clear links or dropdown menus. This resource empowers customers to find answers quickly, minimizing hesitations during checkout.
16. Enhance visibility of the live chat button
Live chat support can be a powerful tool for addressing customer queries and concerns during the checkout process. Make the live chat button highly visible by placing it prominently on the checkout page.
Use contrasting colors, bold fonts, or even a chat icon to draw attention to it. Ensure that customers can easily initiate a chat with a single click, creating an accessible channel for immediate assistance and problem resolution.
17. Prioritize mobile responsiveness in design
In an era of mobile shopping, optimizing for mobile responsiveness is paramount. Ensure that your checkout process is seamlessly accessible and functional on various mobile devices and screen sizes.
Use responsive design principles to adapt the layout and elements for mobile screens, making it easy for users to navigate, enter information, and complete their purchases with ease.
18. Showcase high-definition images
Visual appeal plays a significant role in attracting and retaining customers. Feature high-quality images, even in thumbnail or icon sizes, to showcase your products effectively. Use HD images that are clear, well-lit, and zoomable.
When customers can see products in detail, it instils confidence and reduces doubts, leading to higher conversion rates. Incorporate image optimization techniques to ensure fast loading times on all devices.
19. Display social proof
Showcase social proof, such as customer reviews, ratings, and testimonials, on the checkout page. These can reassure customers about the quality and popularity of your products. Use concise snippets or star ratings to catch the eye and build trust.
Include links to full reviews or a dedicated review page for those who want more information. Social proof creates a sense of reliability and credibility, encouraging conversions.
20. Highlight the delivery date
Clearly highlight the expected delivery date during the checkout process. Customers appreciate knowing when they can expect their purchase to arrive. Provide estimated delivery times based on shipping options and location. Consider offering expedited shipping choices for customers who need their items sooner. A visible delivery date reduces uncertainty and can incentivize customers to complete their purchases.
21. Make customer support information easily accessible
Ensure that customer support information is readily available and self-evident. Display contact options, such as phone numbers, email addresses, and live chat, prominently on the checkout page.
Consider adding a brief note about your support availability and response times. This accessibility reassures customers that help is available if they encounter any issues, leading to smoother checkouts.
22. Provide samples
Enhance the checkout experience by offering complimentary product samples or add-ons. Suggest relevant samples based on the customer's cart or preferences if applicable. Ensure that the sampling option is presented before finalizing the order. Samples not only surprise and delight customers but also increase the perceived value of their purchase, potentially boosting conversion rates.
23. Utilize trust badges
Incorporate trust badges and security seals to instill confidence in your checkout process.
Display icons for SSL certification, payment security, and data privacy compliance. Place these badges close to payment and personal information fields to reassure customers that their data is safe.
Trust badges communicate your commitment to security, reducing cart abandonment due to security concerns.
Boosting your website's checkout rate is achievable without complexity.
Checkout Wiz simplifies the process with AI-based upsell recommendations, customization options, and excellent support.