When customers convert and it comes time for them to provide the necessary details to place an order, they expect a streamlined and simple process. As marketing expert Neil Patel pointed out, the ordering process quite literally sets the tone for customers – but this is also where companies see the most abandonment.
Every activity contributes to the overall customer experience and the level of engagement shoppers have with the brand and its offerings. Missing the mark at checkout is a big deal.
There are a few steps companies can take to simplify ordering and prevent drop-offs at this crucial juncture:
1) Don't force customers to sign in
"30% of customers don't complete the ordering process after realizing they have to set up an account first."
According to UX expert Christian Holst, a whopping 30 percent of customers don't complete the ordering process after realizing they have to set up an account first. While returning customers with established accounts can usually navigate this process pretty quickly, a new client will find this cumbersome, and will be frustrated at the extra steps required to complete the order.
Instead, brands should look to eliminate the annoying "sign-in banner," as Patel refers to it, and leverage the customer data they have to better recognize returning customers and provide streamlined ways for them to login at checkout. The data included in a robust order management system provides key details that can be used to identify customers who already have accounts with the brand. In addition, guest checkout options should be available for new customers to simplify the process and put a stop to abandonment.
2) Map the ordering process for customers
Speaking of the steps involved in ordering, shoppers appreciate it when you let them know where they're at in the process and how many more actions they have ahead of them. Including a progress indicator, which maps out steps like providing shipping info, filling out payment information and reviewing the order before placing it, is an easy way to make sure customers aren't in the dark during checkout.
3) Simplify purchase paths with personalization
While the actual checkout process is one of the ripest for simplification, there are also other areas brands should examine, including overall purchase paths. As Harvard Business Review contributors Patrick Spenner and Karen Freeman noted, confusing purchase paths and customer journeys can quickly turn off potential buyers.
"Creating a more efficient path means minimizing the number of information sources consumers must touch while moving confidently toward purchase," Spenner and Freeman wrote. "The savviest brands achieve this by personalizing the route."
And with an advanced OMS on the business's side, you have all the details necessary to glean a 360 degree view of your customers, and customize their purchase paths according to their unique needs.
4) Ensure streamlined order management
OMS technology can offer several key benefits in terms of order simplification, including the ability to recognize returning customers and provide personalization within the customer experience.
Overall, a streamlined and simplified ordering process starts with an advanced order management solution that enables brands to effectively manage the customer lifecycle from beginning to end.
To find out more, connect with the experts at SFG about our industry leading FlexOMS today.