Faulty checkout process leads to friction losses
In Germany, more than two thirds (67.3 percent) of the 100 or so German ecommerce websites with the greatest reach make three or more of these mistakes, in Sweden only a good half (52 percent). The value in Germany has improved significantly compared to 2018. At that time it was over 90 percent. Stripe has identified a good ten unnecessary errors that make the payment process more complex and thus lead to friction losses and a lower conversion rate.
Fixing bugs means more sales
Most of the e-commerce websites analyzed by Stripe in the UK, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Italy and Sweden do not follow best practices to maximize the conversion rate. With nine out of ten canceled sales in Europe failing in the checkout process, addressing these fundamental issues and reducing friction in the transaction process can lead to a significant increase in conversion and sales.
Traders in Europe neglect the European single market
In some European countries, other payment methods besides credit cards were also tested during the analysis. It was striking that there are hardly any methods offered in all countries that are very popular in individual other countries, for example iDeal, P24 or Eps transfer. As a result, consumers from the European single market could cancel purchase projects because payment methods that are common in their own country are not offered internationally.
Even if the European single market offers great opportunities, it can fail because of such simple details. In some markets it was also checked whether the payment method was translated into other European languages. In France this was not the case in 92 percent of the cases, in Italy 72 percent and in the UK only 66 percent. This further unnecessarily inhibits intra-European trade.
Modern mobile wallets are hardly available as a payment method
Payment methods such as Apple Pay or Google Pay are hardly offered in this country or online in Sweden. 94 percent of merchants in Spain don’t offer payment methods. So far, these mobile wallets have hardly been offered in France (88 percent), Italy (84 percent) and Great Britain (82 percent) – although the integration of both would be an easy way to meet the new EU requirements for strong customer authentication (PSD2 / SCA) fulfill. According to the directive, two-factor authentication of many online payments is required at the turn of the year.
Common mistakes in the checkout process are easy to avoid
Stripe found that 56 percent of the most visited websites in Italy allow customers to submit transactions with invalid card numbers. France did little better with 47 percent, in Spain it was still 35 percent. Great Britain did a little better with 32 percent and Sweden did best with 16 percent. Germany’s worst figure was 57 percent. Some countries achieved better values with an easy to fix but enormous stumbling block.
Only 18 percent of the UK shops tested failed to provide a numeric keypad for cell-only number entry, such as entering a credit card number, on cell phones. This is a decrease of 35 percent in 2018 and the best value in Europe. Nevertheless, 41 percent of retailers made the mistake in Spain, 50 percent in Italy and 54 percent in Germany.
Checklist: How to optimize for mobile devices
- Make sure you have your form automatically adapts to smaller screens.
- Display a numeric keypadwhen customers are asked to enter their card details.
- Offer payment methods like Apple Pay or Google Pay (Mobile Wallets) and ideally only let them appear if you know that they have been set up by your customer and can be used on the current device.
Checklist: How to localize your checkout experience
- Identify the top countriesthat you want to sell to and make sure you localize the checkout process by translating your page.
- Adjust the respective fieldsto collect the right information for each country.
- Show the most important payment methods locally dynamically in your checkout, depending on where your customers are.
Checklist: How to design a powerful checkout process
- Show errors in the payment information in real time before customers click “Buy Now” or “Order Paid”. UI elements like a red exclamation mark or a green check mark can convey this quickly at a glance.
- If an error occurs in the form, use descriptive and specific error messages. Clearly identify what the error is, whether it is an invalid card number or a past expiration date.
- Make sure your checkout process can accept and automatically fill in the information stored in the customer’s browser instead of asking them to re-enter their data.
- Automatically leave an icon for the credit card brand (such as Visa or Mastercard) after entering the card number.
An average of 3.81 errors in every German checkout process
Only five of the 100 or so websites examined in Germany had an error-free checkout process. 67.3 percent (2018: 92.7 percent) had three or more errors, 37.3 percent (2018: 57.3 percent) even five or more and still 14.5 percent (2018: 10.4 percent) seven or more errors in the twelve criteria tested. On average, the online shops with the greatest reach in Germany came up with 3.81 errors.