Did you know that the average shopping cart abandonment rate for e-commerce sites is more than 65%, which means that online shoppers do not complete the checkout process at least 65 times out of 100 after adding products to their cart. The good news is that you can reduce the shopping cart abandonment on your e-commerce website by following our 11 effective tips to optimize e-commerce checkout forms.
#1 Remember KISS. Keep it short and simple.
The moment your customer sees a long form, he will get turned off easily. A buyer has already calculated the length of time to fill up the form. So now that the customer has decided to buy your product or service, do not cause inconvenience by offering a lengthy, time-consuming, and energy-inducing form.
#2 Review all your fields. Use only the required ones.
That doesn’t mean you will put the term “required” on all your fields. It’s a matter of re-examining every field in your form and check if each and every one is necessary. If you can do away with one question, take it out. Remember your goal is to keep your form short and simple.
#3 Review if you are using the right kind of field or option per question.
For those fields where the user will have to select from the options and not type in the answer, you have to make sure you are using the right ones for the right objective:
- Radio buttons: these are used for a short list of options where only one should be selected.
- Drop down select boxes: use these for a long list of options and only one should be selected.
- Checkboxes: to be used when one can choose any number of options, or to check if they agree to the rules and conditions stated.
#4 Do not leave the formatting to the buyer.
Make it less hard for buyers to guess the formatting and just end up having an error. Dictate the formatting yourself. There are certain programming tools that can be used so that when the buyer inputs the characters on the field, they automatically adjust to the right format. Yes, it may require additional effort and cost on your end, but the investment will be definitely worth it.
#5 Instant validation of fields is helpful.
When a customer automatically learns that he/she is on the right track in filling out your form, the confidence and motivation will come out. Think of a check or a star or a smiley face that lights up after every field is correctly filled up. Isn’t it empowering?
#6 Assure buyers about the importance of required fields
There are some fields that customers are hesitant to answer because they feel the info might just be used for marketing or for database keeping. If these required fields cannot be avoided, then you will just need to overcome their hesitations. For instance, if you need the e-mail address of the customer, you can use an in-line microcopy that is benefits-focused such as: E-mail address (where we can send you the official invoice).
#7 Do not pressure customers to select something not applicable to them.
Don’t forget to have an “others” or “not applicable” option for drop down menu field.
With the modern world, surely you cannot list down every option that is out there right now.
#8 Make sure text fields are long enough.
Short text boxes are limiting and often times annoying. If you’re already nearing the end part and you’re typing something long, you won’t see the earlier part of the text if there were errors in it. To avoid this, use the ideal number for characters for a field, which is 20 characters. It’s also better if you can provide for 50, especially for those requiring long ones such asking for a complete billing address.
#9 Always have an auto-save mechanism.
As a rule of thumb, you want to provide the customers all the convenience you can give them, and do your best not to annoy them. So, make sure you have an auto-save option. They will even thank you and love you for that, in case something goes wrong in the middle of their filling up of the form.
#10 Don’t lead them away from the checkout process.
Since you want them to finish the checkout process, it is best to keep them on the same page and to have the least disruptions and distractions as much as possible. So, if you want to show additional information or options but want to avoid these, you can go for pop-ups when they hover over a text, or floating windows.
#11 Reassurance is key, until the very end.
The last part of the checkout process is the most crucial one because of course you would like it to end successfully. To customers, two of the most important assurances they need are security and money-back guarantee option. Security seals or badges of security help in assuring they are in good hands, and have nothing to worry about.
Follow these simple tips and strategies and see your checkout form completion rate increase, as well as your profits. Good luck!
Masroor works for Invesp Conversion Optimization, a conversion rate and landing page optimization company that have helped hundreds of businesses in increasing the overall conversion rate of their website. You can also follow for latest conversion optimization webinars.