One key aspect to having a successful B2B e-commerce website is having a seamless checkout process. After all, what good is pouring hard-earned dollars into driving traffic and user adoption if, at the last moment, your site throws up roadblocks to completing transactions? According to ecommerce consultancy SaleCycle, which periodically tracks cart abandon rates, the average global cart abandonment rate for Q3 2018 was 76.9 percent. That means that only about 24 percent of all people who indicate buying intention by putting something in their shopping cart actually complete the transaction and buy something.
The reasons for these are varied, and include things like wanting to save a product for later, being turned off by surprise shipping costs, or simply getting distracted and navigating away from the shopping cart. By far, though, one of the biggest reasons buyers don’t complete their purchases is due to complex checkout processes.
Now, in B2B e-commerce, purchases are often more complex than in B2C. The person making the purchase may or may not be the person to use the product; sometimes buyers need to get authorization from other departments or a supervisor to complete the purchase; or sometimes products need to be configured during the checkout process, which in itself can be a complex task.
That’s why your checkout process needs to be as seamless as possible. Here is everything you need to make that a reality, and to ensure you keep your abandoned carts to an acceptable level.
Allow Guest Checkouts
Many firms require buyers to register an account before completing a purchase. But few things will have a buyer navigating to a competitor’s website faster than that. B2B buyers want to get in, find what they need, complete the purchase, and move on with their day. Allowing buyers to complete transactions as guests is one of the easiest ways to accomplish that. But don’t worry, you can still capture their contact information. You may even want to send them a follow-up email with an offer should they officially register with an account. However you chose to handle it, focusing on what the buyer needs over what your company needs is a sure-fire way to close online sales faster.
Pay Attention to User Experience
Have you ever tried to use an e-commerce site that put buttons in weird places? That’s the worst, right? Too often in B2B, how checkout pages are designed are treated more like an afterthought rather than an opportunity to capture more business. This is what is referred to as user experience; that is, the overall experience of someone using your website (and specifically the checkout process in this case). The good news is that web technology allows you to test different layouts and designs, so you can find the one that converts best. That might include playing with form design, button placement, even colors.
Offering Flexible Payment Options
Another important reason why buyers abandon shopping carts is because they don’t see a payment option that meets their needs when they go to checkout. Often, e-commerce transactions are done by credit card, but in the B2B world, trade credit is far more common. However, as we’ve discussed previously, trade credit is a long, laborious process that ends up costing sellers more than they’re worth. Offering the ability for buyers to apply and get credit to complete their purchase in under a minute is not only a huge time saver for the buyer, but also a big booster for conversions as well.
If you’d like to learn more about having a seamless checkout process with flexible payment options, contact us. We’re happy to show you how Credit Key can help speed up checkout while also helping you get paid faster.