Top 5 User Testing Tips for Shopping Cart Success

Tip 4: Test the First Step of Checkout—Account Selection

account-selectionThe first step of checkout is typically selecting whether to check out as a registered user or a guest. Among registered users, there are two types—returning and new. This means a total of three user experiences need to be tested to ensure that nothing derails this important transition into the checkout process.

Guest checkout, once considered optional, is now very popular among top retailers because the availability of guest checkout improves conversion.

How to test it
Watch new users try to check out. (In order to solicit the most realistic user behavior at this stage, consider using intercepts to recruit testers from among customers browsing your site right now.) Watch for the following among each user group:

  1. Customers checking out as guests. Do they have any problem finding guest checkout? Is it as easy as possible to create an account at the end of checkout, optimizing the chance to add them to a customer database? Are there any compelling reasons to register?
  2. New registrations. Is the registration form short and clear? Do customers get stuck on unusually restrictive password requirements? Once registration is complete, is the customer smoothly transitioned to the next step, or are there bumps in the road, such as a requirement to log in or confirm their account?
  3. Returning customers. Is the login option easy enough for returning customers to find? After login, is pre-populated information clearly shown, and easy to change for this transaction?


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