As an ecommerce owner, choosing a shopping cart should be one of your top priorities. When customers visit your online store to purchase something, you want to ensure that customers can check their orders. You need to make sure that customers get a seamless checkout experience. 18% of users abandon checkout because it’s too complicated. By optimizing your checkout process, you can expect an average 35.62% increase in conversion rates.
Optimizing your shopping cart is essential to minimize the abandonment rate. Ensuring a smooth checkout process for your customers guarantees that they will complete the customer experience. Think of the sales process as a road map that will lead customers to the desired outcome – a sale.
As an online store owner, your goal is to avoid anything that will drive customers away. In this article, we take a look at the common mistakes you should avoid when choosing a shopping cart.
Common Mistakes In Choosing A Shopping Cart
- You Have A Long or Confusing Checkout Process
- Unintuitive or Difficult Site Navigation
- You Do Not Have A Mobile Strategy
- You Make Shoppers Register Before They Can Buy
- You Don’t Offer Alternative Payment Solutions
- Your Website Loads Slowly
- Poor Product Images and Descriptions
Common Mistakes In Choosing A Shopping Cart
The shopping cart is one of the most important elements of your online store. Unfortunately, for some ecommerce stores, just when their shoppers are ready to make a purchase, they reach a dead end and decide to leave without completing their purchase. Here are common mistakes you should avoid to ensure a complete purchase by your customers.
1. You Have A Long And Confusing Checkout Process
Time is gold as far as customers are concerned. However, not every customer has the patience for a long checkout process. According to Baymard Institute, having a non-linear checkout process is one of the biggest violations that online stores can make. Some ecommerce stores have a checkout process that loops back to a previous screen. It can be confusing because sometimes it redirects them to a page they have already filled out.
Nothing can be more frustrating for customers than filling out long forms during checkout. Experts recommend limiting your forms to as few as 12 form elements and 7 form fields. For example, use the full name field instead of the first and last names. In addition, you can have customers enter their street address in just a single line. You can also eliminate unnecessary optional fields.
Also, avoid using off site checkout. When customers find themselves being directed to a different website, it can become confusing for them. This can contribute to a poor customer experience, resulting in 28% of shoppers abandoning their carts. It is imperative for customers to stay on your website during the checkout process.
2. Unintuitive or Difficult Site Navigation
Another crucial element that could hurt your checkout process is difficulty navigating your ecommerce website. You want to create a seamless navigation experience for your customers. Keep in mind that your customers do not have the luxury of time. The human attention span has steadily declined from 12 seconds to just 8 seconds in recent years. That’s the amount of time you need to capture your customers. You need to give them a reason to stay on your website within that span of time. Here are some tips on making your ecommerce website easy to navigate:
- Divide your products into categories. If you sell various products divided into categories, you should make them clear and visually defined. Category headings must be visually separated from the sub-categories.
- Make all navigation elements clickable. All headings should be clickable, even with drop-down menus. Customers have the instinct to click the sub-categories so make sure they link to the desired page.
- Use accurate navigation titles. You should give visitors a general idea of your pages before clicking navigational links. This is true for both the main navigation link or the internal link. Use accurate text for the description of the linked pages so they have an idea of where they are going.
- Add ALT text to the images. This applies to every image on your website but, more importantly, to those that link to other pages. Include the ALT attribute with descriptive text. This will give your visitors an idea about the link, regardless of how they view your site.
- Ensure that your search feature works. When using an in-site search feature, your search results page must always generate relevant results. It must compensate for misspellings, show related items, or produce results for products you do not offer and similar results for products you offer.
3. You Do Not Have A Mobile Strategy
Mobile shopping has seen a huge growth in recent years. According to Insider Intelligence, retail mobile ecommerce would more than double to reach $728.28 billion and will account for 44.2% of retail ecommerce sales in the US alone. This emergence of mobile shopping is fueled by the popularity of smartphones and tablets. People use their mobile phones multiple times daily, including shopping for products.
With this in mind, you need to check if your ecommerce website is configured for mobile use. Are you one of the 27% of websites whose online store is not yet mobile-friendly? If yes, you could lose out on potential customers to the competition. Thus, you must ensure your website works well on smartphones and tablets. You must ensure a flawless shopping experience for your customers, regardless of screen size.
As mobile shopping continues to become a popular option for customers, the online store that gets to adapt to the technology more quickly gets to win the customers. Offering mobile-friendly shopping carts can give your online store a competitive advantage. By making your pages mobile-friendly, you cut out the clutter and keep the mobile experience in mind.
4. You Make Shoppers Register Before They Can Buy
One of the reasons that is stopping customers from abandoning their shopping cart is that you make them create an account on your online store before they can buy. 22% of shoppers do not complete their purchase because they are required to create a new user account and 28% say it is the reason they abandon carts. Instead of forcing them to create an account, offer a guest checkout instead.
Account creation before purchase is a huge stumbling block and may force shoppers to take their business to online stores where they don’t have to register for an account. With guest checkout, however, you remove any friction that may stop them from buying from your store. They have already decided to purchase from you and the last thing you want to happen is for them to change their mind.
In addition, your goal is to convert customers, not drive them away. By creating an account, the visitor will only be added to your database. If they create an account, you are not sure they will purchase again from your online store. The only chance you will get them back is through remarketing.
5. You Don’t Offer Alternative Payment Solutions
Not allowing customers to pay using their preferred payment method is a recipe for cart abandonment. Merchants should not limit their customers in how they want to pay for their purchases. Otherwise, they will buy somewhere else. Customers have different preferences when it comes to payments. Most are uncomfortable paying with cash, while others do not like sharing their credit card information.
Offering alternative payment methods attracts customers because it is convenient and safe for them. 42% of global transactions happen via alternative payment methods. These options remove any payment friction and encourage customers to complete their purchases using their preferred payment method.
However, when leveraging alternative payment methods, you want to ensure that the payment method addresses consumer security concerns. Surveys reveal that 18% of customers cited security concerns as their primary reason for abandonment. Your payment method should include both robust security measures and third-party verification on the payment page.
6. Your Website Loads Slowly
Patience is a virtue, as they say, but it isn’t with your ecommerce customers. They expect your website to load quickly. But how fast should your ecommerce website go? According to a 2019 study by Portent, a 0 – 4 second loading time is best for conversion rates, with the first five seconds having the highest impact on conversion rates. The same study revealed that conversion rate will drop by an average of 4.42% with each additional second of load time.
Improving your page loading speed is not all that hard. Considering the potential benefits of a fast-loading website, you would not mind spending time fixing the issue. Here are the steps to improve your website speed:
- Optimize and Reduce Image Size. If your website has tons of images that are not optimized, it will have a negative impact on your website’s loading speed. Make sure that your images are not unnecessarily large.
- Minimize Your Code. Website codes can get messy, affecting the website’s loading speed. If you are using a CMS or website builder, it will result in unnecessary line breaks, spaces, and other elements that should not be there in the first place.
- Enable Cache. Whenever you visit a website, some of its elements are moved to a cache. In caching, your browser does not load every resource but only one of them.
Your shopping cart is crucial to improving your conversion rate. If you don’t fix the common problems we have mentioned, your shoppers will go somewhere else where they won’t be having an issue
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