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Optimising your shopping bag

Think of the shopping bag as the stage in the store where you’ve tried something on and are ready to make a purchase.

Obviously instore you don’t need to think of anything else at the point as you can simply approach the counter and buy your goods.

However, before buying online you also need to know:

  • What happens if I’m not in?…how do I get my goods?
  • Do you deliver to my work?
  • How quickly can I get my goods?
  • How much will my order cost in total?

It’s also a good idea to make sure the customer knows that your site is safe and secure.

And if you have promotion codes, whatever you do don’t call them discount codes! Otherwise you’ll send customers scurrying off to try and find a code!

Let me save my shopping bag. For a variety of reasons, I might not be ready to place my order. It could just be that I’m buying at work and run out of time to complete my purchase during my lunch break. I may decide to complete my purchase later from home.

If you don’t let me save my bag, do you really expect me to go through this whole process again? Would you?

Some customers also leave at this stage for various other reasons.’ It could be they’re not 100% sure about what they’re buying etc. Which is why it’s also a good idea to provide a phone number with customer service support. Sometimes all it takes is the ability to talk to someone to close the sale.

And of course I might be a gift buyer, so make sure you offer me gift wrap and gift messaging.

Don’t let me leave without buying!  If I do drop off your site, retarget me with an email incentivising me to purchase.

Martin Newman is chief executive of ecommerce specialist Practicology

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