Do You Make it Easy to Order on the Web? (My Bet is No.)
A true story: This past Sunday I decided to order a Christmas gift for our friends Doris and David and another for my cousin Suzy — ideally the same gift for both, something foodie and festive. I went to the following Web sites: Swiss Colony, The Wisconsin Cheeseman, Hickory Farms, Red Cooper, Fortnum & Mason, Amazon.com, See’s Candies, Ghirardelli Chocolate Co., Jelly Belly, Mrs. Field’s Gifts, Figi’s, Dean & DeLuca, Cross Creek Groves, Godiva Chocolatier, and Harry & David.
All were happy to take my order for two of the same item. I could not for the life of me figure out how to send one of the items to Dave and Doris and the other to Suzy.
“Make it as easy as possible to order,” said Grolier Enterprises Founder Elsworth Howell. The same catalogers that do it beautifully with their printed order forms cannot translate the simplicity to the Web site.
I gave up and abandoned every shopping cart.
How to Make the Ordering Process Quick, Easy and Foolproof
Start with the premise that the creators of order forms for printed catalogs know what they’re doing and Web designers do not.
The secret is to find a typical printed order from any old-line food catalog that specializes in gifts and replicate the process on your Web site.
The Order Form in Print
The typical printed gift order form has a series of boxes — one for each gift — with the following copy:
SHIP TO THE FOLLOWING ADDRESS
Company Name (if applicable):
Gift to Arrive by (Date):
Gift Wrapped Y N
Gift Card to Read:
Item# Qty Description Price Total
Shipping & Handling:
Total for this Order:
This little box is repeated on printed order forms two, three or more times — one for each gift order.