Five ways to improve your conversion rates in 2023

Consumers are increasingly conscious of prices and ultimately purchases due to recent inflation, and brands are having to work harder to capture sales. Therefore, it’s more important than ever that once a brand has a customer’s attention, convinced them to purchase a product, and they are in the process of checking out that friction points causing drop-offs are avoided. In fact, according to Forrester research, $18 billion in revenue is lost every year due to drop-off. Given the high level of drop-off for digital transactions, it's imperative that brands optimize their sites for better conversion. Here are five ways that every marketer can improve conversion rates:

Provide clear shipping/pick-up details

Shipping information is a key factor in driving conversion. Most users have big expectations about how fast they can get their items, however problems start when basic questions are not addressed early on.  When will I get my items? Does Sunday count within 2-day shipping?  How much does it cost?

Creating clarity as early as possible, from the product detail page through the shopping cart, will increase users’ confidence to move forward with the purchase.

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Allow checkout with 3rd party options

There is nothing more frustrating than being forced to create an account while trying to purchase a product. As a user, not all interactions with a brand indicate a desire for a long-term relationship, and filling out forms in order to create an account can feel tedious, especially long forms — resulting in a high possibility that users make mistakes ending in frustration. By providing a 3rd payment method where users have established accounts brands can speed up the process and increase the chances of conversion.

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Have password-free authentication 

Every site has different password requirements, some are overly complex, and most users forget them quite often. Retrieving a password typically requires at least four steps, which increases the probability of drop-off. Allowing users to authenticate without a password with a one-time passcode or link will empower them to checkout seamlessly.

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Integrate with optical character recognition and/or credit card auto-fill

Imagine a consumer attempting to buy a pair of shoes they just found on their phone. As they enter their credit card information, typically16 digits, they get error messages due to typos and the user has to do it over again. To limit customer frustration, provide photo input of payment that lets users take one photo and all of their information populates. Further, consider integrating credit card auto-fill, so that when a user has already saved their credit card to their browser, they are one click away from completing transactions leading to fewer abandonments.

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Provide alternative payment methods to credit cards

Consumers have different preferences when it comes to making payments due to security, privacy and at times, speed. While the majority will default to credit cards, it is key to provide flexibility through a variety of payment methods such as Apple Pay, Google Pay, PayPal, Venmo, or Buy Now, Pay Later. Brands should also consider local payment methods which may be more popular in specific countries. Once a range of payment offerings has been established, be conscious about how they are presented to the user - always have one payment type as a default, typically credit card, to provide a transparent path to completion, while keeping other options visible and the next steps clear.

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The overall principle to win over customers and improve conversion rates is flexibility, giving them options and information that will improve their confidence with the brand experience and ultimately speed up the purchase process.