What Makes a Perfect eCommerce Checkout Experience?

A simple and customer-centric checkout experience holds the key to the success of your eCommerce store.

What Makes a Perfect eCommerce Checkout Experience?

A simple and customer-centric checkout experience holds the key to the success of your eCommerce store. It leads to return customers, positive reviews, and the growth of your business. 

Top brands in eCommerce have mastered the art of personalizing every stage of the shopping experience for their customers. From marketing strategies, to ordering, to delivery, every step is geared to create a positive and consistent experience for shoppers.

A huge investment in eCommerce goes into creating a user-friendly website interface. However, many merchants are still unable to leverage technology to perfect the checkout experience.

To satisfy customer demands, a checkout system must be:

  • Mobile friendly with social media integrations
  • User friendly with a live chat for customer assistance
  • Secure with multiple payment options

Here, we’ll learn about the importance of the checkout experience and how you can perfect it to increase your sales revenue and rank alongside the big players.

How the Checkout Experience Determines the Success of an Ecommerce Store

An optimized checkout is the core component of your success as an eCommerce investor. It satisfies customer expectations and increases the visitor-to-buyer conversion rate.

After customers have loved the product, a seamless buying process at the checkout increases the chances of them completing the purchase.

If the checkout process is tedious and inconvenient, the buyer simply terminates the process at checkout. This is also known as checkout abandonment and is responsible for sales decline and negative customer reviews.

What Is Checkout Abandonment?

Checkout abandonment is where customers abandon the shopping process after they’ve initiated checkout.

Checkout abandonment is not the same as cart abandonment. 

Cart abandonment is where customers stop the buying process before they get to checkout.

difference between cart abandonment and checkout abandonment

On average, one in five Americans have abandoned an order at the checkout due to a tedious and inconvenient process. 

Checkout abandonment distorts the perfect checkout flow, and if it’s too high (60% and above), can lead to the collapse of profitability for your store.

Reasons for Checkout Abandonment

Online shoppers have limited patience for a complex and tedious checkout experience. 

The table below shows the most common reasons for checkout abandonment alongside customer expectations.

This diagram shows the results of a study by the Baymard Institute on the most common reasons for checkout abandonment.

research on checkout abandonment by the Baymard Institute

How to Perfect the Checkout Process in Your Online Store

To combat checkout abandonment and improve the performance of your online store, you have to make the checkout experience as painless as possible.

The eCommerce platform hosting your store hugely determines the user interface and how easy it is to use. However, there are different ways that you can create a positive experience for your shoppers during checkout.

Create a Mobile-Friendly Checkout With Social Account Sign In

Most online marketing campaigns are implemented through social media channels. This means that most customer acquisition is done via mobile devices.

Creating a mobile-friendly checkout means having integrations that lead shoppers from browsing social media to the product page and an easy checkout.

For example, FashionNova, a leading apparel eCommerce store has a tap-to-shop link that guides shoppers from Instagram straight to checkout.

Enabling such integrations helps you bag customers who are impressed with your products but have a very limited attention span.

FashionNova mobile-friendly checkout experience

Offer Multiple Payment Methods and Upfront Transparency With Shipping Costs

One mistake that causes shoppers to abandon their carts during checkout is expensive shipping costs and the unavailability of their preferred payment methods.

For example, let’s say you want to buy an air fryer because you’ve been seeing some amazing recipes on YouTube or TikTok and you’d love to try. You find it at an online store and start the checkout process.

Once you see the shipping cost and taxes you’re unimpressed. You’ll probably look for another store or decide to forget the whole idea. 

As an eCommerce store owner, you should give the total product costs with the estimated shipping costs upfront. Nobody likes surprises, especially when they involve extra charges.

Also, provide different payment options on your online store to enable more customers an easy buying experience.

various payment options you can offer your shoppers

Allow Guest Checkout

Mandatory account creation when checking out is a major problem causing checkout abandonment. Not everyone is interested in creating an account with every shop they buy from.

Allowing guest checkout is an amazing way to deal with this. 

Now, you may still need shoppers' information for marketing campaigns and customer outreach. The best way to encourage them to create an account is to highlight the benefits of having one.

For example, someone may be in love with your brand and needs the heads up when you’re launching a product. If they’re super interested, they’ll create an account without hesitation.

The key is to give customers the option to have an account or not to have one.

Nixon, a top watch brand, is a good example that offers shoppers the option to create an account.

optional account creation on Nixon website

Asking shoppers for unnecessary information could lead to checkout abandonment because they:

  • Don’t want to feel committed to your store
  • Don’t want to leave their credit card information with your store
  • Find account creation tedious and time-consuming

Accelerate the checkout experience to give your shoppers satisfaction and they’ll keep coming back.

Guarantee Security and Offer Customer Support

Shoppers need assurance for the security of their credit card information and are hesitant to trust anyone online.

First and foremost, your eCommerce platform should offer security for customers’ information and secure your business from fraudsters.

For example, Shopify Plus is compliant with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI compliant) and guarantees security for your business and your customers.

Secondly, you can display badges on the checkout page of your store to assure potential customers that all your processes are secure.

According to a study by Baymard Institute, the use of trust badges helps establish visual security in the checkout flow.

security badges in action

In instances where customers may still need further support during checkout, enable a call option or a live chat. This will help build customer confidence in your store and reduce the rate of checkout abandonment.

How You Can Use Technology to Create a Perfect Checkout Experience

To be in line with the big players, you have to invest in integrations that help customers throughout the shopping process.

With customer expectations at an all-time high, you as a merchant must enable a convenient and safe checkout to grow your business.

To improve the checkout experience, you’ll have to incorporate integrations at checkout that:

  • Give the correct estimates
  • Assure security of credit card information
  • Offer support

At Pivofy, we provide premium developer and maintenance services for eCommerce stores. Due to our successful delivery in every project, we’ve been voted by Shopify Plus as their top web developer.

To have any questions answered, contact us and we’ll help guide you in creating the perfect user interface and checkout experience for your eCommerce website.

positive review from Killer Bees Honey founder

Frequently Asked Questions 

What is checkout optimization on Shopify Plus?

Checkout optimization on Shopify Plus means creating a simple user-friendly checkout process to enable easy and fast checkout for your shoppers on Shopify Plus.

What is a checkout flow?

A checkout flow is the steps taken by a shopper from the time they view the product page to completing the payment.

Does the eCommerce platform determine the checkout experience?

Security, one of the biggest concerns for shoppers, is hugely determined by your choice of eCommerce platform.

Shopify Plus is Level 1 PCI compliant which assures you and your customers full security. To set up a store or migrate to Shopify Plus, get in touch with us at Pivofy and we’ll be happy to discuss the process with you.

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