When it comes to committing to a purchase, 60-80% of buyers feel enough doubt about their purchase to abandon their shopping cart instead of clicking the “Buy Now” button (Is this the right product? Does the product really fit my needs? Was I thorough enough in my research? Am I making the right choice?). If your e-commerce site cannot assure buyers right then and there, your doubt-ridden shoppers will likely leave your site and leave behind an unfulfilled order in an attempt to find answers elsewhere, only never to return again.
The focus of creating an engaged, dynamic check-out experience (rather than a dead-end order page) starts with providing the necessary product verification opportunities for buyers at that critical moment of doubt. This article outlines a sales strategy for reducing shopping cart abandonment on the spot.
Signs of an effective buyer assurance strategy
The implementation of a buyer assurance strategy as outlined below, should:
- Reduce shopping cart abandonment by assuring customers in the product verification stage at checkout.
- Accelerate time to value by providing a seamless, uninterrupted purchase experience.
- Empower e-commerce managers to capture and evaluate qualitative data of customer engagement across the purchase journey.
Implement a buyer assurance strategy
The key element of a successful product verification strategy is buyer assurance. This section outlines the steps to effect buyer assurance and ultimately more sales.
Step 1: Plan your buyer assurance strategy
Put the following in place to start implementing your strategy:
- Establish a buyer assurance team consisting of inter-departmental subject matter experts (technical writers, engineers, product developers, marketing and branding experts, sales directors, etc.)
- Leverage a web-accessible customer success content platform (such as MindTouch) to house your product documentation. The MindTouch architecture, for example, lends itself perfectly to housing content that is to be surfaced and searched on e-commerce sites with a few simple lines of code added to the backend of your e-commerce platform.
- Grant access to the content platform for your buyer assurance team. With MindTouch restrict access as needed.
Step 2: Identify your buyer assurance opportunities
Include one or more of the following to your e-commerce checkout page to allow wavering customers to find last-minute assurance on product questions:
- Product details. May include color, material, size, installation guide.
- Comparison of similar or competitive products. Provide comparison charts of similar products offered by your company or of competitive products to highlight advantages.
- Add-ons. Alert of additional products that increase the value of the product where applicable.
- Visual product verification. Provide graphics or (additional) images.
- Technical specifications. Include measurements, system information, standards, etc.
- Care instructions. Provide post-use and maintenance instructions for the product.
Step 3: Implement your buyer assurance tools
For each of your buyer assurance methods, use the right tools (such as MindTouch Touchpoint tools) to provide access to product documentation on your e-commerce page(s):
- Use an embedded contextual help tool (pop-up window) or an embedded search tool on your checkout pages.
- The MindTouch contextual help button tool allows shoppers to review and search for your product information instantly without having to leave your order page.
- The search-in-place tool allows shoppers to quickly search your product documentation to alleviate any last-minute concerns or doubts.
Step 4: Audit your buyer assurance strategy
In conjunction with your e-commerce platform reporting tools and Google analytics, set up an audit schedule to review your buyer assurance strategy:
- In Google analytics, review how your buyers navigate through your e-commerce site and where customers lose interest or disappear.
- With the customer insights tool, learn about your customers' search behavior leading up to the point of purchase and identify which customers searched for information but ended up not buying a product. This intelligence helps identify missing or hard-to-find product information.
- Use MindTouch reports to gather intelligence around your content and user interactions. MindTouch reports can, for example, help identify how useful users found your product documentation.
Step 5: Act on audit findings
Leveraging your buyer assurance content team, start updating or creating missing documentation:
- Create a content creation process that includes members of the buyer assurance content team.
- For lacking or missing content, assign team members to create content.
- Have new content approved and reviewed via peer reviews.
- Publish new content in real-time on your e-commerce platform.
- Schedule a future audit point.
Step 6: Reap the rewards
The reward of a buyer assurance strategy is twofold: (1) The buyer reward: Buyers are invited to a low-effort, dynamic shopping experience that reassures them of their buying decisions every step of the way; and (2) Company reward: Fewer shopping carts are abandoned, opportunity for additional purchases (e.g. add-ons) are created and sales increase.