How To Win More Online Sales
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How To Win More Online Sales

Win more online sales

How To Win More Online Sales

By simplifying the online payment process, you can benefit from a much larger consumer base and earn more profit.

E-commerce makes up nearly a third of all retail sales in the UK, with a benefit of almost £700bn to the economy.

But while online sales are a massive boost to businesses, many online stores lose significant amounts of money through abandoned carts.

This is when a customer fills a shopping cart but fails to complete the purchase.

According to online experience researchers at the Baymard Institute, nearly 70% of all online shopping carts are abandoned.

That’s a massive amount of lost sales.

But why would a customer who’s taken the time to shop online and reach the final stage just walk away?

And, more importantly, for businesses, how can you get them back?

In this article, card machine provider Handepay outlines the key steps any business can take to encourage more online sales.

1 - Have a secure website

Online security is a big issue for consumers, and not many are going to enter their debit card or credit card details into a website if they think there’s a chance the data could be stolen.

If you sell online, secure your website and get an SSL certificate.

This authenticates your website and proves you have active encryption in place to protect sensitive information (essentially, it prevents information shared between two systems being intercepted or shared without authorisation)

The customer will know your website is secure because a secured padlock will be displayed next to your URL, and your URL will start with ‘HTTPS’, so customers will be more confident.

2 - Let customers ‘pay as a guest’

Not every customer will be a returning one, and many may only shop with you once because you have a special deal that appeals to them.

If a customer is making a one-off purchase, they won’t want the hassle of creating an account and are more likely to walk away from the purchase.

It’s better to give them the option to pay as a guest instead, so they don’t have to enter any information.

If the customer wants to shop with you and create an account, they will, but don’t force them into it.

3 - Only collect the details you need to complete the transaction

Many companies use the fact a customer is buying something as a way of collecting loads of information for future marketing.

This alienates the customer, increasing the risk they’ll walk away from the purchase.

Collecting the minimum amount of information you need for the customer to complete a purchase makes the process simpler and more manageable.

You can ask for additional information after accepting the payment, such as saving an email address to receive seasonal offers.

4 - Use clear field error prompts

Sometimes, a customer will make a mistake filling in information when making a payment, or they might accidentally miss a section.

If they do, there’s nothing worse than seeing all the information they’ve entered disappear with no idea of where they’ve gone wrong.

They might assume your system isn’t working and decide against the purchase - costing you money.

The better thing to do is to use field error prompts.

You might have seen these.

The information you’ve entered correctly is still there, but the errors or missing information are clearly highlighted.

This way, customers can see where the error is and just correct those mistakes rather than starting everything from scratch.

5 - Let repeat customers pay with a single click

While not every customer will create an account for online shopping, others will.

For these returning customers, you want to make their second purchase even more effortless.

Single-click purchases (like that offered by Amazon) make repeat purchases more convenient for customers.

Plus, because they only have to click once, you reduce the chance they’ll change their minds and could encourage more impulse purchases.

6 - Use cart abandonment alerts

Not every customer abandons a cart on purpose.

Sometimes life gets in the way.

Someone’s at the door. The kids break a lamp downstairs. They need the loo.

It could be anything, and your customer just forgets what they were doing.

Rather than sitting around hoping they’ll come back, a quick cart abandonment alert or email reminding them they were in the middle of buying something can bring them back.

The worst thing the customer can do is return and delete the purchase - but they weren’t likely to complete it anyway if you’ve had to remind them, so you’ve got nothing to lose.

Consider this, 40% of abandoned cart emails are opened, and 10% of customers who open them go on to complete their purchase.

7 - Don’t limit how customers can pay

Buying online is supposed to be a convenient way to shop. And this includes offering as many different payment options as you can.

Whether it’s debit and credit cards or mobile payments through Apple Pay or Google Pay (among others), you shouldn’t limit how a customer can give you money.

It’s also worth considering adding a ‘buy now, pay later’ option to encourage customers to buy and spread the cost of their purchase over a more extended period.

Make online payments as quick and easy as instore ‘tap and go’

Contactless card payments have made paying in-store as easy as possible.

And with three-quarters of consumers shopping online at least once a month, making the online payment experience just as simple is essential.

As easy as it is for people to buy online, it’s also easier to walk away from a purchase.

By simplifying the online payment process, you can benefit from a much larger consumer base and earn more profit.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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