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Building Loveable E-Commerce Experiences

We’ve all been on that horribly annoying website that seems to want to force you to log in or sign up to the site you’re buying from before purchase something.

You see a great offer, you click buy now, you get your credit card out your wallet and suddenly your hit with a massive list of text fields from the site ordering that you give the site all your personal information under the sun.

A massive turn off and can be a sale killer.

The point of an e-commerce site is to sell items, so why get in your customers way? Basically, the old age visage of KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) is the best way to look at it.

Imagine walking to your local newspaper stand to buy a newspaper and before you hand over your 20 pence piece the guy at the news stand wants you to fill out a piece of paper with all your name, address, email and over pieces of various personal information as well as asking you to tick a box about how or where you found his newspaper stand from. I am sure that 99 out of 100 people would walk off and go and buy their newspaper somewhere else.

So why do the same to your online customers? If you provide more fields to fill out, options to tick and barriers to entry then the more likely it is that your customers will go to your competitor. Below are a few things to remember when building e-commerce sites to help increase your conversion rates.

Never Make Login Information Compulsory

This is quite possibly one of the biggest barriers to entry when it comes to completing an online purchase. If you see something in a shop or on a website, you want to buy it immediately. The more time you have to think the more likely you are to talk yourself out of why you don’t really need it. Filling out a page of personal information, followed by thinking up a new username and password that’s available, confirming your email address and setting up password retrieval security questions add a lot of time to the checkout experience and in turn the chance that a customer may just change their mind and leave.

However, Do Give Them The Option

Having said the above, returning customers may wish to be able to save their information on your site to speed up the process in future (think of Amazon’s one click buy button). You can enable them to save name, address and credit card information to save considerably time in future, but make it an option.

Progress Indicators

Make sure you provide your customers with exactly how far along the process they are. If you don’t provide this then customers are likely to feel that they are never going to get to the end and that every ‘next’ click is a pointless venture. Try to break down the information into small, simple steps to save overwhelming your customers and let them know how far they have to go. Below is an example from Amazon’s check out process.

Recommend Related Products

This is something Amazon is very good at and uses extensively. How many times have you gone in to your local supermarket looking for milk and ended up buying half the items in the store? The milk is strategically placed towards the back to encourage you to view more products that may interest you along the way.

In the same way, recommending other products to a customer may just tickle their interest or you may have forgotten something that you now realise you need (like a case for your brand new camera, or a spare set of strings for your guitar).

Allow Reviewing Of Orders

Always allow your customers to review their purchase before they place it. It has happened countless times where a user has had surprise taxes or delivery costs added to their purchase without their knowledge. Some companies don’t even offer the opportunity to review the cart before the sale is completed, resulting in a user paying more than they thought they had.

This last page is very important to give the consumer peace of mind and give them a last opportunity to check that everything is correct, including contact information, pricing, delivery time, credit card information etc.

This will improve your return rate and customer satisfaction as well as decreasing your costs on customer service from all your annoyed customers and returns.

Remember to treat your online store like you would a physical one, make it as easy as possible to purchase and keep your customers coming back. If you would like any help setting up an e-commerce store then why not speak to us here at Network Intellect.

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