The Online Guru Online Marketing Tips by ZitaNguyen


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									Seven Tips for Designing a Customer-Friendly Shopping Cart

The popularity of online shopping is largely due to the convenience it provides customers. All other
things being equal, offering a customer-friendly shopping cart gives the etailer a better chance of
gaining and keeping a consumer’s business. Here are seven tips toward that end:

Tip One: Make It Easy to Use

Shoppers want to view information, add products to the cart, review selections, make changes, and pay
simply by clicking buttons. The “add to cart” button should be prominently displayed. Navigating
between product pages and the cart should be easy. Modifying the cart should be simple. Conversion is
more likely when the cart is easy to use.

Tip Two: Make It Interactive

What colors and sizes are available? Is it in stock? How much money will they save if they buy in
quantity? What will shipping cost? Building interactive features into the shopping cart allows
consumers to explore options and be assured they are getting exactly what they want.

Tip Three: Give It Time

Making the customer’s cart savable lets him build his order over time. For example, eBay’s site
lets customers save selections to a wish list. They can return later to purchase selected items. If a sale is
not completed in a given period of time, the shopper receives an email reminding them to update their
wish list.

Tip Four: Automatically Calculate Totals
Keeping the consumer informed of total costs will build his or her confidence in shopping through the
website. The shopping cart should show the product total, tax, and shipping costs. Many sites show a
summary page as the final step before the consumer completes the transaction.

Tip Five: Allow Multiple Payment Options

Accepting payment through a number of methods will increase the likelihood that the transaction will
be completed. Some customers prefer using credit cards. Some use PayPal. Still others use echecks.
Providing a variety of payment options makes purchasing possible for a wider range of customers.

Tip Six: Keep It Secure

Consider becoming a member of a third-party privacy seal program, which verifies the credibility of
ecommerce sites. Ensure encryption of personal data. Display the website’s privacy policy. Assuring
consumers of the site’s trustworthiness eliminates concerns and encourages a mutually beneficial
business relationship.

Tip Seven: Confirm the Purchase

An automated email confirmation following the sale assures the customer that his or her order is in
progress. As added assurance, many etailers find it a good practice to include contact instructions so
the consumer can keep tabs on the status of the order, make inquiries, and track shipping.

Consumers look for ease of use, efficiency, and security when purchasing online. A well-designed
shopping cart can meet these needs and increase conversion rate and revenue for etailers in a highly
competitive market.

Ewen Chia,

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