Shopping online is growing more and more. It is easy to guess why. No more queues for the changing room, no more Saturday afternoon wasted in Oxford Street making your way through thousands of tourists. You can have an overview of the different options on the market and compare prices to make the best choice. Everything is faster and easier, all you need to do is lying on your couch and wait for a carrier to deliver the items in front of your step door. Now that the mobile e-commerce is growing everything seems even simpler. Everything you need is a smartphone and an opposable thumb.
But for many users the shopping experience may be disappointing because the process is not often designed properly. Filling out complex registration forms, products out of stock and above all the endless checkout process.
Ecommerce business should make the UX as simpler and pleasurable as possible in order to convince the buyer to come back in store.
It’s all about creating a convenient space and avoiding to waste your client’s time and money.
Here’s an effective checklist to improve your checkout process.
- Make it clear
Every step of the checkout should be clear and defined. The customers need to be able to understand at which phase of the process they are, what has been done until now and what remains to do to complete the purchase.
Here’s a good example from House of Fraser.
- Easy navigation within checkout
The buyer should be able to explore the steps they have already undertaken in the checkout and edit them without losing the information provided before. “Confirm form resubmission” messages and expired session are really annoying. Here’s another example from Waitrose.
- Don’t loose information
The information already entered by the user should never be lost. If users hate fill hundred of forms with personal information, they hate even more enter them twice or more. This information should not disappear for expired sessions or page refresh.
- Session timing
It is good practice communicate to your customers how long the session will last and for how long the product will be available. Arriving at the final step to find out that the shirt you wanted is out of stock or the flight you were about to book is not longer available at the same price is really irritating.
Following an example of Ticketmaster website which clearly show the time remaining to the end of the session.
- Order modifications
If users have just made a mistake or simply want to change the quantity to buy, make this process easy for them avoiding useless loss of items in the basket.
- Form fulfilling
The form should be clear and fast. It should require only necessary information, should be optimised for usability and work properly. Annoying red signs stating my postcode does not exist (I live here!) or requiring a mandatory landlines (I just don’t have it!) are not allowed. This may be frustrating to the point of cart abandonment.
- Provide support
User can have problem or misunderstanding during their journey. It may be useful then to provide an instant professional help for instance a live chat or prompt phone call back. If users feel the lack of support and do not receive the help needed immediately, being only directed to FAQ-pages, they may interrupt the purchase. Check below the Dell example.
- Be reliable
Would you ever give to an estranger in the middle of the street your name, address, phone number and your bank details? I doubt it. Customers are about to give you important and private information. Let them trust you. Enable a clear navigation, give them your contacts and ensure the privacy and security of data.
- Order summary
Insert a summary at the end of the journey that explains in details what they are about to purchase, show the final price and any info about delivery, return, terms and conditions.
- Order confirmation
Clearly communicate to the user that the purchase has been successful and send them a confirmation email with the shopping summary. Also, you could insert in this stage targeted offers and promotions to stimulate them to buy more. And do not forget to thank them. Customers like to be pleased.
In conclusion, improve the UX and make it more efficient, fast and simple will have a positive outcome. If buyers will fell helped and satisfied, they will be more likely to come back and repeat purchases.