Conversion Optimization

18 Store Owners Share eCommerce Checkout Best Practices for 2024

eCommerce store owners and experts share their checkout best practices to get more sales!

18 Store Owners Share eCommerce Checkout Best Practices for 2024

Research shows that 69% of all eCommerce shoppers abandon checkout. 

You’ll see many eCommerce checkout best practices on the internet. 

But, how will you know which strategies work and which don’t? 

That’s why, we spoke to numerous eCommerce store owners and industry experts to find out what’s worked for them.

Let’s dive in.

18 Best Practices to Improve eCommerce Checkout Experience

1. Consider single-page checkout

To enhance the checkout experience, a single-page checkout system can effectively optimize user convenience, and substantially increase the checkout rate.

Tadas Pukas, Founder and CEO, MinimalisticLinen, says,

‘After examining user data, we saw that a considerable number of prospective customers dropped off as a result of uncertainty or distractions. So we quickly customized our checkout page for mobile, allowing customers to navigate and buy on any device easily. These methods solved problems and improved user happiness and conversion rates.’

Some eCommerce checkout best practices for your store:

✅ Provide a summary of the order including items, quantities, prices, and applicable taxes or shipping fees. 

✅ Communicate important policies, such as shipping times, return and refund policies, and terms of service, within the checkout page.

✅ Enable shoppers to customize their orders directly within the checkout page by selecting gift wrapping options, adding personalized messages, or choosing product variations (e.g., size, color) without navigating to the product pages.

2. Apply visual cues 

It's essential to consider every step of the checkout experience. 

Ensure customers are provided with clear information through visual cues

Show what they need to do next, without overwhelming them or making them feel pressured into a sale.

Dr. Hamdan Abdullah Hamed, Board-Certified Dermatologist and Co-Founder, Power Your Curls, says,

‘We indicated something like "Select the number of items after choosing your product," so customers know they have the freedom to choose their desired quantity later in the process. This approach can reduce pressure and increase their comfort level with purchasing,’

Some eCommerce checkout best practices for your store:

✅ Use progress bars or step indicators to visually represent the stages of the checkout process. 

✅ Visually highlight the current step or section of the checkout process. Do it through color changes, bold text, or icon indicators to draw attention and provide clarity.

✅ Highlight required fields with asterisks (*) and display error messages in a prominent and visually distinct manner to guide shoppers in completing the form correctly.

3. Validate before purchase 

Before hitting checkout, many shoppers want to make sure they have added the right products to cart.  

Draven McConville, CEO & Founder, Klipboard, says,

‘Integrate product thumbnails at various points during the checkout process to serve as visual reminders for customers of the things they have selected.’

eCommerce checkout flow best practices to keep in mind:

✅ Ensure compatibility with browser autofill features to prevent conflicts or issues with pre-filled information. 

✅ Validate promo codes or discount coupons before applying them to the order total. 

4. Enable ‘edit’ option 

Shoppers mustn’t go back to ‘shopping mode’ from the checkout page.

Kathrina, Marketing team, Droppe, says,

‘One problem we recently fixed was how we allow users to edit their delivery information in the checkout while trying to keep them in the checkout flow.’

eCommerce checkout flow best practices to keep in mind:

✅ Offer the option to save edited order details for future reference or to apply them to future purchases. This enhances convenience for returning customers.

✅ Ensure that the "edit" option is easily accessible and functional on mobile devices, considering the limited screen space and touch-based interactions.

5. Enable ‘save for later’ for carts

Here are some benefits of implementing saving carts:

  • let shoppers save products for later
  • insight into customer preferences, and 
  • analyze which items are frequently saved

David Godlewski, CEO, Intelliverse, says,

‘A “save for later” option for out-of-stock or undecided items can enhance the overall shopping experience and keep potential sales in the pipeline, all contributing to a reduction in cart and checkout abandonment rates,’  

eCommerce checkout flow best practices to keep in mind:

✅ Use clear and descriptive labels such as "Save for Later," "Move to Wishlist," or "Save Items" to indicate the purpose of the feature. 

✅ If saved items will go out of stock, set up notifications to encourage shoppers to complete the purchase. 

6. Enable shipping calculator 

To improve their eCommerce checkout experience, Ammo.com ran a survey among both loyal and new shoppers and a significant 25.6% pointed out the lack of transparency in shipping and tax costs as a major hurdle.

Consequently, they introduced a tax and shipping cost calculator that prompts shoppers to enter their ZIP code and get an estimate of the relevant costs. 

Alex Horsman, Head of Marketing, Ammo.com commented,

‘This small addition made a huge difference. Shoppers appreciate the transparency. It's reflected in their behavior—as seen in Google Analytics session analysis, they complete purchases or adjust their order to align with their budget. This tweak was a game-changer—it slashed cart abandonment rates. No surprises, just good business.’

Online checkout best practices to keep in mind:

✅ Make the shipping calculator prominently visible early in the checkout process, preferably on the cart page or as soon as shipping information is requested. 

✅ Design the shipping calculator with a clean interface to include input fields for the destination country, state/province, and postal code to provide accurate shipping estimates based on location.

7. Offer free shipping 

Free shipping is a default eCommerce checkout best practice. 

Nikhil Jogia, Managing Director, Jogia Diamonds, elaborates,

‘By offering free shipping, we minimized cart abandonment and improved the overall value proposition of our products. This strategic move proved to be a game-changer, increasing customer satisfaction and sales.’

Online checkout best practices to keep in mind:

✅ Encourage immediate action by offering free shipping as a limited-time promotion. 

✅ Use attention-grabbing banners, pop-ups, or call-to-action buttons to promote free shipping offers.

✅ Create targeted free shipping offers for specific customer segments, such as new customers, loyal customers, or subscribers to your newsletter. 

8. Enable biometric payment for mobile shoppers

Researchers predict that the biometric payment cards market will grow at a CAGR of 62.3% to USD 15498.82 million by 2032. 

Steven Athwal, Managing Director and Tech Enthusiast, The Big Phone Store, says,

‘We streamlined our checkout process and a frictionless payment alternative that employs biometric authentication was implemented. By mitigating the issue of customers abandoning the checkout process as a result of security apprehensions and protracted payment procedures, this approach substantially increased the checkout rate.’

Mobile checkout best practices to keep in mind:

✅ Clearly communicate the purpose and benefits of biometric authentication to shoppers, and obtain explicit consent before enabling biometric payment options. 

✅ Ensure compliance with industry standards and regulations governing biometric authentication, such as the FIDO (Fast Identity Online) Alliance standards or regional data protection laws.

9. Increase AOV with AI recommendations

AI-driven personalized recommendations are the newest entry into eCommerce checkout best practices. 

Steven Athwal, Managing Director and Tech Enthusiast, The Big Phone Store elaborates, 

‘According to our analysis, customers typically left without purchasing supplementary products. The AI recommendation engine offers relevant items during the shopping experience, reducing cart abandonment and improving the buying experience.’

Checkout process best practices to keep in mind:

✅ Leverage AI algorithms to identify cross-selling opportunities between related product categories or complementary items. 

✅ Recommend products that are frequently purchased together or that enhance the customer's shopping experience based on collaborative filtering or association analysis.

10. Implement guest checkout (or better alternatives)

Almost 60% of all online retailers offer guest checkout as an option to make first-time purchases go faster. 

Dhari Alabdulhadi, CTO and Founder, Ubuy Kuwait, says,

‘A guest checkout option significantly reduced friction, resulting in increased conversions and a smoother checkout process.'

Checkout process best practices to keep in mind:

✅ Offer a "Sign in with Facebook" or "Sign in with Google" button alongside traditional account creation options for added convenience. 

✅ Offer the option for guest customers to create an account after completing their purchase.

ecom checkout best practices

11. Clearly outline store policies 

Shoppers are often fickle about their purchases. 

They would like to have the flexibility of returns.

Especially during holidays

Michael Wall, Founder, Codefixer, says,

‘Publish clear and understandable information about shipping and returns. This can put buyers at ease and encourage them to complete the purchase. Throughout the entire checkout procedure, you can also use appealing language.’

Some eCommerce checkout best practices for your store:

✅ Summarize key points of each policy directly on the checkout page to provide a quick reference for customers. 

✅ Use pop-ups or modals to display a summary of store policies when customers reach the checkout page.

12. Communicate even after the purchase 

A post-purchase follow-up email campaign can improve customer satisfaction, reduce return rates, and increase customer loyalty. 

Yoana Wong, Co-Founder, Secret Florists, says,

‘For example, if a customer experienced a technical error during checkout, a post-purchase follow-up email can apologize for the inconvenience, offer a discount on their next purchase, and ensure a smoother experience in the future.'

Some eCommerce checkout best practices for your store:

✅ Follow up with customers after their order has been delivered with a brief survey or feedback form in the email to gather customer insights and identify areas for improvement.

✅ Invite customers to join membership or loyalty programs to unlock additional benefits and rewards. 

✅ Send reorder reminders or replenishment notifications for consumable products that customers may need to restock periodically.

13. Streamline high-value purchases

Transactions over a certain amount often fail due to fraud prevention measures, payment processing limits, and bank customer protection policies. 

Lev Tretyakov, CEO and Sales Director, Fortador, says,

‘To address this, we implemented a new strategy: for items priced over $3,000, customers are now prompted to submit a contact form. Our cart abandonment rate dropped by 45%. We have seen a spike in sales of our high-end equipment. It's a win-win: customers feel more secure, and we're selling more of our premium products.’

Checkout process best practices to keep in mind:

✅ Integrate virtual shopping assistants or chatbots into the checkout process to guide customers, answer questions, and provide personalized recommendations in real time. 

✅ Provide customers with the ability to split their payments into manageable installments or apply for financing during checkout, enhancing affordability and purchase accessibility.

14. Try the checkout process yourself 

Putting yourself in your customer’s shoes can effectively test the checkout experience and make the process as simple and seamless as possible.

Christy Pyrz, CMO, Paradigm Peptides, says,

‘How many steps will you take until you make a purchase? Is it confusing? Make sure if a shopper adds to cart on their laptop, but wants to complete the order on their phone, the experience is seamless and friction-free.’

Checkout process best practices to keep in mind:

✅ Conduct user testing with real customers who represent your target audience. Observe how they navigate through the checkout process, identify any pain points or obstacles they encounter, and gather feedback on their overall experience.

✅ Use conversion funnel analysis to visualize the steps involved in the checkout process and identify drop-off points or bottlenecks where customers are abandoning their carts. 

15. Personalize user experience 

As part of eCommerce checkout best practices, you can never go wrong by personalizing the UX.  

Michael Wall, Founder, Codefixer, says,

‘Use a checkout progress bar to update customers on their order status. As a result, you’re less likely to abandon your shopping cart out of fear.’

Don't forget to check out: eCommerce Shopping Cart Optimization: 50 Brilliant Strategies

Some eCommerce checkout best practices for your store:

✅ Offer relevant shipping options, promotions, or localized content based on the user's geographic location to enhance relevance and improve conversion rates.

✅ Ensure that the checkout process is optimized for various devices and screen sizes to provide a consistent and user-friendly experience across desktop, mobile, and tablet devices. 

16. Fix technical issues

Technical difficulties can be a hindrance in smooth running checkout experiences.

David Zhang, CEO, Kate Backdrop, says,

‘We ensured our website was optimized for different browsers and devices to solve this issue. We also added customer support options during the checkout process so customers can easily contact us for assistance.’

Some eCommerce checkout best practices for your store:

✅ Implement effective session management techniques to prevent session timeouts, data loss, or unexpected session expirations during the checkout process. Maintain session state across pages and interactions to provide a seamless and uninterrupted user experience.

✅Test integrations with third-party services, APIs, and external systems that are used during the checkout process, such as shipping carriers, tax calculators, or fraud prevention services.

17. Offer more payment options

ecom checkout best practices

Illia Mundut, CEO and Founder, Heftyberry, says,

‘If the store offers limited payment options, customers who prefer alternative methods may abandon their carts. Expand the range of payment options to cater to different customer preferences.’

Best practices for eCommerce checkout:

✅ Research and integrate local payment methods popular in specific regions or countries where your customers are located. Examples include Alipay in China, iDEAL in the Netherlands, and Boleto Bancário in Brazil. 

✅ Ensure that all payment options are available for guest checkout to minimize friction and allow first-time customers to complete their purchases easily.

18. Leverage social proof 

ecom checkout best practices 1

Benjamin Beck, Marketing, Tortuga Backpacks, says,

‘Leveraging social proof greatly improved our add-to-cart and checkout rates in nearly every A/B test on our web pages. We showed off the awards our travel backpacks have won alongside user-generated videos from social media, significantly reducing our abandoned cart rates.’

Checkout process best practices to keep in mind:

✅ Display customer reviews and ratings for products directly on the checkout page to reassure shoppers and alleviate any last-minute doubts they may have about their purchase decision.

✅ Implement live sales notifications or pop-ups that display recent purchases made by other customers in real time. Seeing that others are actively buying the same product can create a sense of urgency and encourage shoppers to complete their purchase before the item sells out.

More on eCommerce Checkout Best Practices 

1. How do you upsell at checkout?

Upselling at checkout involves suggesting additional or upgraded products or services to potential customers who have already decided to make a purchase. 

Here are some tips for upselling at checkout:

Offer add-ons: This is a classic upselling technique that can be used in a variety of ways. For example, you could offer a free gift with a purchase, a discount on a related product, or a bundle of products that are often purchased together.

Cross-sell complementary products: This is another common upselling technique. For example, if a customer is buying a new laptop, you could suggest that they also purchase a laptop bag or a mouse.

Promote premium products: If you have a premium product that is more expensive than the standard option, you can try to upsell customers to this product by highlighting its benefits. For example, you could say that the premium product is made with higher-quality materials or that it comes with a longer warranty.

Offer personalized recommendations: This is a more sophisticated upselling technique that requires some data analysis. You can use customer data to identify products that are likely to be of interest to each customer, and then you can offer these products at checkout.

Use clear and concise language: Make sure that your upsell offers are easy to understand.

Be patient: Don't give up if the customer doesn't immediately take you up on your offer.

Be persistent: Don't be afraid to ask the customer again if they're still undecided.

Offer a discount: If the customer is still hesitant and you see many checkout abandonment rates, you can try offering a discount.

2. Why do customers abandon their carts?

Here are some common reasons why customers abandon their carts:

High shipping costs: Customers may be reluctant to complete a purchase if the shipping costs are too high.

Long checkout process: Customers may become frustrated if the checkout process is too long or complicated.

Unclear payment options: Customers may be hesitant to complete a purchase if they are not sure how to pay.

Security concerns: Customers may be worried about their credit card information being stolen if they make a purchase online.

Negative shopping experience: Customers may have had a negative shopping experience in the past, which may make them less likely to complete a purchase.

Unexpected costs: Customers may be surprised by unexpected costs, such as taxes or shipping fees, which may cause them to abandon their carts.

Lack of trust: Customers may not trust the company they are buying from, which may make them less likely to complete a purchase.

Comparison shopping: Many shoppers use carts as a way to compare prices across different sites or to save items for later decision-making.

Technical Issues: Glitches, errors, or slow loading times during the checkout process frustrate customers and might cause them to leave.

Lack of payment options: Limited payment options can be a barrier. If a preferred method isn’t available, customers may abandon their carts.

3. How do you reduce eCommerce checkout abandonment?

Here are some ideas on how to reduce eCommerce checkout abandonment:

Offer multiple payment options: Give customers the option to pay with their credit card, debit card(even teen debit cards), PayPal, or other payment methods.

Display shipping costs upfront: Don't surprise customers with hidden shipping costs at checkout.

Offer free shipping on orders over a certain amount: This is a great way to incentivize customers to complete their purchases.

Speed up your checkout process: Use a fast, reliable checkout platform that doesn't require customers to create an account.

Personalize your checkout process: Use customer data to personalize the checkout process and make it more relevant to each customer.

Offer a secure checkout process: Use a secure checkout platform that protects customer data from fraud.

Provide clear and concise instructions: Make sure your checkout process is easy to understand, with clear and concise instructions.

Offer a live chat option: If customers have any questions or concerns, give them the option to chat with a live representative.

Offer a seamless post-purchase experience: Send customers a confirmation email with their order details and tracking information.

By following these tips, you can reduce ecommerce checkout abandonment and increase your sales.

Before you go...

98% of visitors who visit an eCommerce site—drop off without buying anything.

Why: user experience issues that cause friction for visitors.

And this is the problem Convertcart solves.

We've helped 500+ eCommerce stores (in the US) improve user experience—and 2X their conversions.

How we can help you:

Our conversion experts can audit your site—identify UX issues, and suggest changes to improve conversions.

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