6 minute read
*Editor's note: This article was updated on May 9, 2023 from its original publish date of July 15, 2019.
"Electronic commerce," "ecommerce," "e-commerce"—no matter how you spell it, doing business online has become the norm. Forbes predicts that nearly one-fourth of all retail commerce will happen online by 2026 when ecommerce sales reach $8.1 trillion worldwide.
But despite its growth in popularity, The Baymard Institute notes that nearly 70% of online shoppers abandon their carts at checkout. The report explains why shoppers who are ready to buy abandon their carts instead.
- 18% of shoppers didn't trust the site with their card information.
- 17% experienced a long and complicated checkout process.
- 7% said the company didn't offer enough payment methods.
Convert more browsers to buyers
Here are seven simple payment optimization strategies that can help you improve your conversion rates and turn browsers into buyers.
1. Accept a variety of digital payment methods
Your customers want to pay with their preferred payment methods. Credit and debit cards are still popular, but more customers demand alternative payment methods.
- Digital wallets are gaining popularity. Google Pay, Alipay, WeChat Pay and Apple Pay are some of your customers' favorites. Customers love their convenience, security and speed. And because your customers' payment details are already stored in their digital wallets through tokenization, you can simplify your online checkout process by accepting this payment method. Customers choose a stored card in their digital wallet and then click to buy. This saves your customers time from manually re-entering their payment information over and over again—increasing your chances of conversion.
- Direct debit and bank transfers let customers pay directly from their bank account. The growth in open banking solutions offers some markets even more ways to pay from their bank account, often in real time.
- Payment links and QR code payments let customers pay from any channel—even social media. These payments are convenient and easy to use, and they don't require a visit to your website to pay.
Digital payment options are especially important if you target the more tech-savvy and tech-native generations. Learn more about how Millennials and Gen Z are shaping the future of payments.
2. Think cross-border
Your ecommerce business likely attracts customers from around the world. Be sure to offer their preferred local payment methods to minimize cart abandonment. This also helps expand your market and revenue potential.
With cross-border ecommerce expected to reach $2.25 trillion by 2026, selling across borders opens a world of opportunity. If you plan to sell internationally, you may need to rethink how you accept payments overall. Cross-border payments come with their own set of challenges, but domestic acquiring can help.
3. Offer favorable purchasing terms
It's not a one-size-fits-all world. And your payment options shouldn't be either. Deferred billing, recurring billing and installment payments like buy now, pay later (BNPL) are options to consider for your customers. RBC Capital Markets estimates that these installment loans increase your retail conversion rates from 20% to 30% and boost your average ticket sizes from 30% to 50%.
Offer favorable purchasing options to your customers to let them pay their way over time. And provide that option in your online checkout process.
4. Streamline your checkout process
Have you ever had to fill out both the ship-to and billing address fields, even when they were exactly the same? Businesses that can auto-fill these fields—or even better, provide a one-click checkout process—create an optimized shopping experience. And increase the likelihood of repeat business.
Provide card storage and tokenization to make it easier for customers to return for a fast, easy and seamless checkout experience. The result? Increased revenue and a better customer experience.
5. Ensure accuracy with card account updater services
It's bound to happen—a customer replaces a credit card. Your customer's payment details will change, and this switch can insert friction into your payment process. When expiration dates pass, customers must then update card details stored from previous transactions, slowing down the checkout process.
Changing payment details can also interrupt any automated payments a customer has previously set up with you. Prevent this from happening by taking advantage of card account updater services that automatically refresh your customers' account information when it changes. This helps minimize any disruption to your checkout process—or your customers' ongoing service. It also reinforces a seamless customer experience and allows you to get paid on time.
6. Deliver a seamless, branded ecommerce experience
Create a cohesive brand experience throughout the checkout process, even when selling through social media channels. Make sure your logo is visible on each page and your brand colors—and design elements are a part of the payment experience. This will give your customers confidence that they're buying from a trusted business—yours.
7. Analyze your data to optimize ecommerce sales
All of these front-end payment strategies can lead to improved customer experiences and more revenue for your business. But don't forget the wealth of valuable information at your fingertips on the back end.
Reporting tools provide important insights to help you optimize your checkout conversion—and your business strategy. Know the reasons behind declined transactions, chargebacks and disputes. Analyze sales trends to better plan for seasonal spikes, holidays, higher shipping costs, slower delivery times and more. You can even validate deposits and verify billing.
Data is power, and these are the insights to help you manage and grow your business.
Decrease cart abandonment and increase sales—today
With these tips, you can lower your online shopping cart abandonment rate, increase ecommerce sales and create a scalable online payment strategy—this year and beyond. Contact us to start optimizing your ecommerce business today. Or subscribe to our Payments in Focus newsletter to get the latest insights and trends.