Checkout process

24 Feb 2009 - 2:37pm
7 years ago
5 replies
411 reads
James Page


In my experience it really depends on the product, the price, and
the audience. One thing that I do know is cutting the number of clicks in
every case I have experienced increases the conversation rate. Why do you
have Personal Details and Address Details pages?

Use a method like GOMS to look at how you can reduce the clicks. Check what
errors people are getting.

This research giving conversation rates for large retailers from coremetrics
may help you.

Doing some metric based usability testing (like SUM see: ) may help you pin point the issues with
the product/price/audience mix.

Also take a look at to get some ideas on the Science of Shopping. Get
the nucleus
accumbens working !

all the best


2009/2/23 Rafael Schouchana <rafaschou at>

> Hi all,
> My client is from the retail industry and I am working on their checkout
> process to increase conversion.
> Currently these are the drop off numbers:
> >From Shopping Basket to Personal Details - 50% drop off
> >From Personal Details to Address Details - 50% drop off (user is forcedo
> to
> create account entering a new password, but there is no login for returning
> customers)
> >From Address Details to Payment Details - 40% drop off (user has to enter
> proof of address for credit check)
> >From Payment Details to Review and Confirm - 40% drop off (probably
> because
> of invalid information? or because they are unable to use one of the
> payment
> methods)
> >From Review and Confirm to Success - 50% drop off (this for me is the most
> curious because the user came through the entire form and just gave up?
> something wrong here)
> So I don't have numbers from other projects and would like to know if
> someone has information to say if these drop off rates are too high or are
> too bad.
> My guess is that from Personal Details to the end of the process numbers
> are
> too high.
> Anyone?
> Thanks!
> Rafael Schouchana
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24 Feb 2009 - 1:27pm
Elana Glazer

I don't have any numbers to share with you, so I'm taking off my UX
hat and putting on my online shopper hat (I wear this one well. And

At what point in the process does shipping information appear?

I often get fairly far in the checkout process before this
information displays. When it does, it's often higher than I was
expecting and I leave. Other times, I only start the check out
process to get the shipping information - I wasn't really committed
to buying in the first place.

Not sure if this is relevant to the site your working on.

Good luck!

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Posted from the new

24 Feb 2009 - 2:47pm
Eric DeLabar

Just a thought from my experience, when do they display the shipping
cost and/or total order cost? In our experience, we see a lot of
people go through the process to see how much it's going to actually
cost to have something delivered.

-Eric DeLabar
Sr. Systems Engineer
Trifecta Technologies, Inc.

25 Feb 2009 - 11:09am
Harry Brignull

I agree with you Rafael, that sounds rather high to me.

The 50% drop off from basket to personal details is not necessarily such a

But when someone takes the time to fill in their personal details, they are
basically telling you "Yes, I am intending to complete this transaction".
According to your stats only 8 in 100 users actually make it from the
address details through to confirmation.

I'd carry out a heuristic evaluation, or even better some good old fashioned
usability testing. Also try to find out whether there are any technical
problems (slow page load times, server errors). What's your situation in
terms of budget & time?

Play your cards right and you could bring massive revenue improvements to
your clients.



25 Feb 2009 - 4:16pm
Joshua Lane

Some hints that might help with improving conversion...

1) Don't make them create an account just to buy something from the
store. Make that part optional.

2) The less pages for the checkout process you have, the better. If
you can get the whole thing to a single page, your conversion should
go up. It's not so much about people sharing their info, as it is
the "work" required to share that info.

3) Also, be very upfront about how much shipping and other extra
costs are going to be. If you can include this information in the
cart, do so.

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Posted from the new

26 Feb 2009 - 3:01am
Andy Polaine

I definitely second the above - shipping costs up front are a must,
requiring an account sign up isn't. Otherwise it feels like you're
pulling a fast one on the shopper.

Luke Wroblewski's Web Form Design has some great approaches and tips
for this:

And if you need to convince someone of the worth, read Jared Spool's
case study of one (sign up) button that made a $300m difference when



Andy Polaine

Interaction & Experience Design
Research | Writing | Education

Twitter: apolaine
Skype: apolaine

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