Improving Customer Experience Part 2: The Checkout
The customer experience in the checkout process will make a difference in whether a customer completes the transaction or abandons their cart.
Here are five points to consider in your checkout process:
1) Make it easy for customers to get to the checkout area. Once items have been added to the cart, the "checkout" button should be clearly marked and visible to the customer. This button should be the largest button on the cart page. (Also ensure that when a customer clicks the checkout button, they are taken to the checkout page.)
2) Keep the customer focused. Once inside the checkout area, don't lead the customer away to other sales or promotions. The checkout process should be fully enclosed and devoid of almost all navigational elements. (Have you noticed that most large ecommerce stores switch their navigation or remove their navigation in the checkout area.)
3) Only capture the information required. This seems obvious, but how many times in the checkout process have you been asked for buying preferences, newsletter signups, or even to select a username and password. Gathering extraneous information can easily be done after the customer checks out. (Use contact points such as the confirmation page and order confirmation emails to request the user signup for your newsletter, create an account, etc)
4) Assure the customer about the trustworthiness and security of the checkout process. Trustworthiness can be communicated through a security assurance message and having an SSL certificate. Trustworthiness is also communicated by posting contact information, delivery charges and by having a smooth checkout process.
5) Use Customer Friendly Forms. There are a large number eye tracking studies with regards to forms and labels. It's accepted that the form fields should fit the information that is to be entered and should be clearly labelled. Studies also show clear advantages when the label is placed directly above the form field. Form fields are not a great place to show off creativity.
Is customer experience costing you sales? Visit the recent store we launched for Cuvaison and tell us what you think of the customer experience. We would love to hear your opinion.
The individual product pages don't have search friendly URLs.
The "Sort By" item on the "Buy" page uses "desc," which is not as clear as "descending". Better, copy Amazon's "low to high" and "high to low".
A nice store. Could be a little more vertically compact (things below the fold).
You make some great points - especially the 'low to high' vs 'price desc'. (Sometimes there is too much developer and not enough customer in us).