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Improving Your Mobile e-Commerce Checkout

As we look back at 2018, there has been tremendous growth in mobile commerce.  Of all the things people did on their phones last year, mobile shopping was the fastest growing segment — up 54% YOY. Despite all the opportunity and promise, mobile commerce can be a frustrating and painful experience … for consumers and businesses alike. Why? Two reasons:

  • Mobile-friendly sites are all but universal
  • Mobile-friendly isn’t enough to capture mobile sales

How do we improve and capture more e-Commerce sales? Read on or scroll down to four key benchmarks I suggest you use in evaluating your existing mobile checkout process.

Online Marketplaces with Best Mobile CheckoutOnline commerce will grow more than six times the rate of in-store sales to reach $5.8 trillion by 2022 as consumers turn to online and mobile channels to make purchases that they traditionally would have made in stores. Online purchase methods like click-and-collect and mobile order-ahead are helping to drive that growth, per 451.

Even though, offline purchase of products is still the largest percentage of total purchases, the brands that move fastest on providing their products where their customers are now and project to be shopping will provide a foundation that will help it create a user experience that is connected and provides some “moat” type qualities to keep competitors at bay.

Business Insider Intelligence projects mobile-commerce will account for nearly 40% of US online sales by 2023, totaling $447 billion. And 49% of shopping traffic from November 1 through December 6 in 2018 went through smartphones, according to Adobe. 

Adobe stated in a report from 2018 that mobile accounted for 34.4 % of all purchases made in the Black Friday period. up from 29.1% just one year earlier. If you consider a tablet as being a part of mobile, that percentage rose to 44.4%. The report from Adobe also noted that during this Thanksgiving period there was a sharp rise in the “buy online, pick up in store” option.

Why are smartphones doing so well? It’s partly because phones continue to get more functionality and bigger screens, but also because e-Commerce technology has improved to make the mobile shopping experience faster and easier. That has led also to people not only buying with more frequency but spending more per transaction on smartphones. In a nod to improvement in mobile technology and improved incorporation of better user experience (UX) programming, mobile sessions were 5.2 percent shorter, but conversion was up, with 7.6 percent more visits leading to purchases. Although 7.6% is up, it still lags to a desktop conversion rate of 11% according to Criteo.

As the vast majority of shoppers are now accessing the internet on their smartphone, brands with online e-Commerce options are not reaping the benefits they should be due to poor UX.

Six major search channels for productsShoppers will come and go on your site. However, the shoppers that decide to enter the checkout process are motivated to close the deal. Any improvements in this process will have a direct impact on how much more revenue you obtain from your e-Commerce site. Let’s look at the checkout process and what makes an optimal mobile checkout experience.

Four key benchmarks to use in developing and assessing your brand’s mobile purchase experience

Example of Benchmark for Assessing E-Commerce WebsitesImage Source - Inflow

Provide quick access to the mobile shopping cart 

This is a critical 1st step in final conversion. Make sure your platform flawlessly performs and is quick in loading. Ensure they can easily and quickly update the contents of their cart. Provide a very easy and clear “Remove” button that does not force them to change the quantities listed to Zero in order to remove the product. Don’t force users to have to click an “Update” button to make a change in the shopping cart become effective. Allow it to automatically update. Finally, make sure your checkout process can be easily continued on another device without starting over. Outside of the Apple “handoff” feature unique to its devices, make sure a person can continue a session across different types of devices by resuming a session on a new device once they are logged in. You can help your customers journey and experience by noting when and on what type of device they made additions to potential orders. Always provide a convenient and easy guest checkout on mobile. It is often faster for a user to use an easy guest checkout then recover a lost password while on mobile.

Order Summary and Pickup Options

Consumers rebel very quickly if they do not know upfront what all the costs are with placing an order. Unexpected costs that pop up at checkout drive many shoppers to abandon not only that purchase but your brand for feeling misled. Shipping and delivery charges are an especially sensitive area for shoppers. For mobile, it’s critical to make sure the order summary is easy to read and see at the top of the order checkout. Don’t make them scroll all the way to bottom and seek to keep it above the mobile fold line. Obtaining the shopper's location is a valuable bit of information that can be used to determine any applicable sales tax, delivery charges, and if there are local pickup options. Always ask for permission to use their current location and where possible let them know it allows you to provide accurate shipping charges, pickup options, and sales tax calculation.

Streamline the number of fields that have to be filled in on mobile devices

Keypad errors using mobile devices is much higher than on other larger devices. Fewer fields to fill out reduces error opportunities. Wherever possible use existing data about the customer to automatically fill in fields. Whatever data you are requiring the shopper to fill in, make sure you are presenting the correct keyboard to be used. For email-address fields, use a keyboard optimized for entering email addresses, which prominently features email-specific characters like “@” and “.”.  Use a numeric pad for numeric data such as credit card numbers or phone numbers.

"For example, Amazon customers can go from email to purchase in five steps and with a minimum of data entry." Michael Tucker, Director of e-Commerce, Revenue River

Keyboards should also include up and down arrows to facilitate quick transitions to the next (or previous) form field. Do the work for them. Based on prior data entered by the shopper, you auto fill in information for address and credit card use. Make sure your form can take advantage of the shopper’s information stored in their browser autofill saved data options. This will require your UX development to make sure you have allowed these two systems to talk to each other and execute these actions. Shoppers prefer open fields to fill in for their state and credit card expiration date rather than long drop down or scrolling lists prone to errors in selecting the right numbers and dates. Use the tab index to allow users to move easily from one field to another.

In the end, making it easy to pay is the most critical step in the mobile buying conversion process

Each of us has experienced the pain of how intensive it is to enter your credit card details. Often mobile users don’t have their credit cards handy. Users like secure third party payment options on mobile. The option to use a secure third-party provider should be prominently displayed at the beginning of the check out process. This will help expedite the decision making and minimize buyers inputting unnecessary information. PayPal, Apple Pay, Amazon Pay are examples.

3rd Party Payment OptionsA great new quick way to allow shoppers to check out using their credit cards is allowing them to take a photo of it and using the information from it to auto-fill the fields. Finally, consider one-click checkout. One-click checkout not only reduces checkout friction, it reduces the opportunity for shoppers reviewing forms, orders, etc. that all can lead to hesitation, second-guessing and cart abandonment.

Here are the docs you’ll need to enable one-click checkout on popular commerce platforms:

Allied Market Research has predicted that the global mobile-payments market will grow by more than 33% through the year 2022 to reach $3,388 billion (mobile payments refer to payments made through digital wallets or apps on a smartphone or tablet, such as Apple Pay, PayPal, or Samsung Pay).

If you want to have an exceptional mobile checkout experience that delights and allows you to stand out from your competitors, make sure to pay attention to the details.

Mobile-focused, UX UI elements will facilitate an easy and quick checkout experience. “Speed and simplicity are top features to drive mobile conversion. becoming faster and more efficient in various facets of mobile checkout will pay dividends for e-tailers,” according to experts interviewed by Business Insider Intelligence.

"Even with responsive design and a presence in a mobile app, your ecommerce business isn't done yet. There is more than just technology when creating a scalable mobile strategy....During work hours, makes sure to give users access to content and links that provide useful, actionable information or offer a quick, convenient method to purchase." - The Ecommerce Marketers Guide to Scaling Technology by BigCommerce and Hubspot 

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