March 14, 2008, Newsletter Issue #137: Shopping cart abandonment and online order forms

Tip of the Week

Online order forms should be designed to minimize the risk of shopping cart abandonment. If people have gone through the process of putting items in their cart but then abandon them at the final step, you should review your web site order form. Your form should be as easy as possible for the customer to fill out. Your form should also provide clear progress indicators. Make sure your form clearly distinguishes between required and optional fields and offer drop-down choices where it makes sense rather than making the customer type in a lot of detail. Make the sale and then ask for more information. One optional field, perhaps asking how they found your store and offering multiple choice selections, is about all you should try to get at the time of the order. Send out an email after the order has been fulfilled and try to collect more information then.

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