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Is your shopping cart sinking your sales?

If you have a web cart with a shopping cart, chances are you see a few people drop out of the conversion process once they start using the cart.

In fact, recent e-commerce studies have shown that almost 60 per cent of potential customers abandon their shopping cart.

If your site has a better than average drop-out rate – congrats, you must be doing something right. But if it’s worse than average, it’s time to look at your shopping cart and see what is making your customers leave.

Ask yourself the following questions:

Is the process linear? If people have to do too much switching between screens, or opening another screen, they will give up in frustration. And if your process has any backwards steps, and customers see a screen they have already seen, then they may think your website has a fault and leave.

Do your forms make sense? Let’s say, for example, you want a customer’s first and last name in different fields, then don’t’ write simply “first” or “last”, be instead “First name”, “last name”. Yes, yes, I know most people should understand “first” and “last”, but you know what happens when you assume.

Are the instructions ambiguous? For example, just writing “continue” may make the customer wonder if you mean “continue to checkout” or “continue shopping”. It’s better to use phrases such as “check out now” or “shop more”.

Is the checkout secure? Shoppers want to make sure their credit card details are secure. It’s not enough that they are secure; it’s important to make this very clear with bold letters, red fonts etc.

Do you need a billing and a shipping address? Given that most customers have things sent to their homes, it’s better to make the billing and the shipping address the same by default. This will mean fewer fields for the customer to complete, making the process simpler. Simply having a tick box for “is this the shipping address” would suffice. If the customer ticks “no”, then have the shipping address fields appear.

Is registration optional? A customer should be allowed to make a one-off purchase as a guest without having to register their details. Many, many people are put off by the registration process and will go to a competitor who doesn’t force them to do it.

Is payment simple? Do you have more than one payment option? At the very least, you should allow customers to pay either by credit card or Paypal. Some people are worried about given out their credit card details online, while those that don’t have a Paypal account will be put off by having to register their as well.

If you want to check the process and see how user friendly it is, ask your friends and family to try it out.

Direct Sites Online can build you a shopping cart that works. Call us now on 02 9557 7623 or email info@directsitesonline.com.au.

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