A new study has offered insight into why some customers may abandon ecommerce transactions before reaching the online checkout.
Research conducted by Postcode Anywhere found that shipping charges, concerns about security and the purchasing process taking too long are the biggest barriers to completion.
Some 76 per cent said shipping charges are a major turn-off when it comes to buying goods over the internet.
Security concerns ran a close second with 57 per cent of votes, while 39 per cent of respondents complained about lengthy purchasing processes.
Almost a quarter (23 per cent) of consumers would abandon their cart if a form took too long to fill in, while 49 per cent rated the option to collect items directly from a store as important.
Businesses are throwing away trade
Guy Mucklow, Postcode Anywhere’s chief executive, said the study highlights a number of areas where ill-judged processes and poor user experience are damaging the potential of ecommerce sites and driving business away.
"Given the unlimited range of options available to internet consumers, we are becoming far more discernible about the sites we use," he stated,
"It’s imperative to remember that a competitor site is just a click away."
Mr Mucklow said it doesn’t always matter how low your prices or how good your products are - firms can still lose custom in other areas if they don’t get the whole package right.
"Giving customers what they want, along the simplest route possible, is a proven way to improve customer satisfaction and boost your sales," he stated.
"The message from the research is clear – ensure that the online experience you are providing is user friendly and secure or risk losing your business."
Get the customer experience right
According to a recent study conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of SugarCRM, many consumers feel they remain strangers to the companies they buy goods and services from.
Some 75 per cent of those who have ever called customer support said they were frustrated at the quality of service, and also the fact the business was not aware of their purchasing history.
And 52 per cent said they have had a negative experience with a sales representative that ultimately caused them to not buy from the company.
Larry Augustin, chief executive of SugarCRM, claimed that whether customers are seeking service by traditional or digital channels, they are becoming "incredibly disillusioned" by the poor quality of customer expertise.
"These findings should offer a wake-up call to all companies whose existence depends on happy customers," he stated.
Posted by Jenny Arthur