Over the past decade, the eCommerce industry has grown exponentially. Before it was a market mainly related to the fashion industry, however, today you can buy all sorts of products and services online. Although sales have grown, online stores are still confronted with the same difficulties, in this case the dreaded conversion funnel.
How is it possible that thousands of users accessing your online store yet only 10% make a purchase?
According to eCommerce Study (june 2015) by IAB Spain among the main reasons for abandoning the purchase are thing like hidden costs such as VAT or shipping costs, and the need to think more about the purchase.
This need to ‘think over’ the purchase depends on multiple factors such as the price of products or services, availability, user experience on the site, the moment of payment and even the shipping conditions.
In other words, now that we know what drives our customers to make a purchase or not, we just need to apply this knowledge. If we don´t do this, when comparing traffic to sales we will think that our business is a failing, when in fact the user data is not being properly utilized.
How can we optimize the conversion funnel?
Let’s start by focusing on the users that drop out at check out stage. There are many ways to reduce the cart dropout rate, but here are some of our favorites:
1.- Set up a”persistent” shopping cart
The persistent shopping cart [https://www.bigcommerce.com/ecommerce-answers/what-persistent-shopping-cart/] is a feature that reminds the user about the items they added to the cart, even after they have left the website. It is very useful, because as we saw earlier, one of the main reasons for abandoning the cart is the need to rethink the purchase.
What if after thinking about it the user decides to buy, but when they return to the website they have to search for the products once again and complete the registration process from the start? Would you make that purchase? I doubt it.
The first way to reduce the dropout rate is to respond to the needs of our customers, we recommend implementing the persistent shopping cart to remind users of this possible purchase for up to 6 months.
2.- Make your forms easy and effective
It is no secret that the easiest way to lose a customer is asking too much information. The problem is that we need to do it to complete the purchase; therefore it is essential that you optimize forms to ask the necessary information and not repeatedly ask the user for the same data.
First, don´t make your users fill the same information twice. Remove unnecessary fields and those that repeat but are necessary implement autofill. For example, shipping address and billing information will often ask the same questions in this case it makes sense to implement an autofill.
Second, when you submit the form an error occurs, the information must be kept. If you do not, you will probably lose a customer that does not want to spend the next 15 minutes filling in a form again.
To avoid such errors, differentiate the mandatory fields from the optional ones. Also, the sections that generate the most errors should give an example to the user to avoid any possible doubts of what they need to enter.
3.- No hidden costs
The product, or services, sold should include all taxes, shipping and any other extra fees that may apply. So the user doesn’t get any nasty surprises once they get to check out. Otherwise you can pretty much guarantee a lost sale.
4.- Never force the user to register
In the process of buying, almost half the user’s hate buying when they are forced to register at a store, this removes control over the process and doubles the purchasing time.