E-Commerce Insights: 5 Steps to the Perfect Checkout
Addressing security throughout the cart will help maximize conversions. Verisign-type logos at the top and bottom of the page are helpful, as is addressing “100% secure shopping guaranteed” some place in the upper right-hand corner.
Adding your phone number in as many places as possible is also beneficial. At the least, you should have it in the top column, the right-hand column and the bottom column. For those of you who say, “We don’t want orders on the phone, that’s why we have a Web site,” think again. The fact of the matter is that people who use the phone number in the checkout are trying to save their orders from being abandoned. Web customers don’t want to use the phone, that’s why they’re on your Web site. If they call you, it’s most likely because they have a question or problem in the checkout, or they don’t feel safe or secure in your cart. In short, not allowing them to call you means fewer sales.
Speaking of calling, live chat, if executed properly, works very well in checkouts. One caveat: If you’re not offering 24-hour chat, take it out when it’s offline. And when you don’t offer it, hide all evidence that you do at other times. Offline, interrupted, busy signal and no-answer checkouts have proven to significantly increase abandons.
Amy Africa is president of Eight by Eight, a Williston, Vt.-based consulting firm specializing in Web site improvement, traffic building, SEO, analytics and e-mail marketing. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org or (888) 838-1828.