5 Common Mistakes with Online Payments That Kill Your Conversion
Online merchants still lose a big part of their sales by making common mistakes with the purchasing and payment processes on their websites. We can write and talk about them all the time, giving the best tips, but there is always someone who will make the sales in his own not-as-we-advised way.
We want you to grow your business without pushing customers away, so here are the things you HAVE TO AVOID. Have you’ve noticed that people add items to their carts but leave your site before buying? If yes, you’re probably wondering what the reason is. Maybe you’re making some of the following mistakes.
All that because you’ve decided to redirect them to an external payment website with a completely different design, logo, and URL.
How do you think they feel in this situation? How are they supposed to know they are really paying you?
Redirection is a usability violation and can drive your potential customers to your competitors. Keeping customers on your website gives you control over the entire purchasing process and helps you to grow a loyal customer base.
A painless checkout process is what online consumers need and like the most. Bearing this in mind, deliver a solution that will simplify the buyer’s path. The more steps consumers have to go through, the bigger chance to lose them before paying.
Forcing people to create an account
Requiring an account, especially when a user wants to buy just one item quickly, is the way to lose a potential customer. The same with first-time customers—forcing them to register won’t make them eager to buy from you again.
Note that when you ask people to create an account, you also need to add more fields to fill out. It lengthens the entire buying process and may lead to customer frustration. Usually, when users are asked to create an account, they then need to check their email to complete the process, and you probably won’t see them again.
Smashing Magazine’s test shows that each person forced to create an account felt frustrated, and 30% of them ended the transaction before buying anything.
Your potential customers probably have lots of online accounts, so they really don’t need another one. If possible, give them the option to buy as a guest. You can, of course, encourage them to create an account by offering member-only specials or discounts for those who leave their email address.
You can also ask shoppers to create an account after payment. But don’t be pushy; provide it as an option only. Customers like to have a choice.
Asking for too much information
No one likes nosey people, and the same goes for a long payment form on your website, especially when a customer wants to do some quick shopping.
Focus on asking just the essentials. Every extra field makes the entire process longer and increases the chances to make some mistakes while filling out the form, which may lead to frustration and end with cart abandonment.
Did you know that just 3 fields are enough? These are a card number, expiration date and CVV/CVC.
Your customers should fill out only as many fields in the form as needed and nothing more. Don’t ask them for information that doesn’t make any sense or is totally pointless for the entire payment process.
Asking for only essential information is a conversion-friendly way of selling your products or services. Note that the user experience is crucial at each step of the customer’s journey on your website. Keeping this in mind, use auto-fill wherever possible to save customers’ time.
When you have a multi-step checkout on your website, provide customers with an overview of all the steps. You could, for instance, display a progress indicator.
Not assuring customers that their data is safe
Customers need to be reassured that their sensitive and private data is safe during the checkout. They want to know you’re taking all the security steps necessary to protect their purchases and information.
It’s about your customers’ money; they share sensitive information and card data, so you need to do your best to keep their data safe and secured.
To make customers trust you, keep the design of the payment form consistent across your entire website and display security badges. This strategy will also raise brand awareness.
Remember to have an SSL certificate on your website to encrypt payment information. What’s more, you need to be PCI compliant or find a payment solution with PCI compliance Level 1, which is crucial when you care about the safety of transactions on your site.
Lack of customer support
Put yourself in your customer’s shoes and think about it this way: Your customer tries to pay on your website, but there is a problem completing the payment. He then tries to contact you, but his messages are bouncing back, you’re sending a completely useless reply, or you’re telling a customer to wait (too long) and never come back with the response.
You know that online payment processing is a 24/7 experience, right? Your customers should get a quick response with the problem solved. If you let them wait for ages, you can be sure that you’ll lose customers for good.
Conclusion: Always be helpful.
It’s good for you to choose a payment provider with very responsive support so you are sure your customers’ money is in good hands.
What’s more, it’s normal for users to make some mistakes, such as when they fill out a payment form. Online customers are usually busy and try to do everything at a fast pace, so they can mistype something or chose the wrong field to type in their address.
Displaying precise indicators will save their time and take the frustration away. Don’t make them guess what should be typed in specific fields; show them exactly how they should correct their mistakes. Put a clear message next to the entry field and make it easy to understand.
Over to you
Are you making some of these mistakes?
Remember that some visitors have no intention to buy anything; they just want to check the items available, compare prices, and read the reviews. But there are also many buyers who would become your frequent customers, so don’t waste your chances.
When designing your purchasing process, always build it from the customers’ viewpoint. Customer confusion is a real conversion killer and you can pay a steep price in the end.
The tips given will grow your chances of converting visitors into buyers.
Here’s also a short cheat sheet to print out and remember (no need to thank us; just grab it and make the most of it).
Have something to add? Don’t hesitate to leave a comment.
P.S. Do you know how your customers feel when they find distractions and mistakes on your website? Find out their reactions to cheesy payments in this article.