The Payment Process – Simple is Better
Ecommerce hinges on a company’s ability to accept funds, however prior to accepting money from a customer it’s important that they be able to pay you. With that in mind we are going to talk about the critical mis-steps companies often take.
Make the check out process easy.
Many start ups and existing online businesses pay little attention to the process that the customer experiences on their site. Often one of the areas that is neglected the most is the most important; the check out process. In this area, more is not better. As with every piece of information that is requested from the customer (especially those outside of the norm) it will decrease the chance that the customer will follow through with the check out process.
Rule of Thumb: If the information you’re requesting from the customer is not critical then don’t ask for it. And if you must go against sound judgment at least make sure the information is optional and not required.
Ecommerce has been made simple by so many features on websites and with out of the box shopping carts. Ease of use is what customers now expect. So, it’s no excuse for your check out process not to be user friendly especially if you’re using a halfway decent shopping cart. The list is long on processes that you should follow, so instead of listing everything I’d simply say, go to your favorite ecommerce store and go through their process and compare it with yours. Then make adjustments accordingly.
Also, remember that there is over a 25% fall off for each click that takes place after the customer has selected a product and is ready to pay you. Your website and check out process should take no more than 3 clicks from decision to finalized purchase. If you’re not quite there review your shopping cart and see how the process can be simplified.
Rule of Thumb: Ask a friend, family member or someone who will give it to you straight to go through the check out process on your website. Solicit their feedback on the customer experience and the pain points they had when checking out. Or, if you don’t know anyone who will be candid with you, contact one of your existing customers and offer them a discount on a future order if they provide you feedback on your website. (NOTE: its best if this is done soon after the purchase is made and is a neat way to get them to come back by offering them a discount on a future purchase.)