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How to Create a Seamless Checkout Experience

Posted by Julia Morrissey on Apr 6, 2022

Last updated on May 11th, 2022 at 09:26 am

The retail checkout experience is central to the customer’s experience. Get it right, and they’ll leave happy. Get it wrong, and they’ll remember their last interaction with your brand for all the wrong reasons.

Having an optimal checkout process is the final stage of the conversion battle, and it’s critical to the success of any retail brand. Read on to learn how to create a seamless checkout experience.

The Importance of a Seamless Checkout Experience

Through our survey of nearly 600 customers, we were able to glean just how critical it is to offer a seamless checkout experience.

Our findings showed that 39% of consumers want to be able to self-checkout on their own device, and 33% want store associates to be able to check them out on a mobile device from anywhere in the store. Almost 70% want emailed receipts, and 63% expect a full array of contactless payment types. Interestingly, 26% of shoppers want to be able to make purchases through email and 22% through text message. 

It’s clear that consumers want options when it comes to making purchases, and modern, convenient ones at that.

Set the Standard with Tap to Pay

When determining how to improve the retail checkout experience, remember that customer journeys follow different routes. They might be looking to self-checkout in-store, pick up orders with one tap, receive support from a store associate, or checkout online. Regardless of how or where they want to pay, the process should be seamless.

Tap to pay, a contactless payment method that allows customers to simply tap their card or their iPhone to pay, has soared in popularity since the pandemic hit. There are several key benefits of tap to pay, including reducing friction at the counter and allowing store associates to move more quickly through transactions, thus minimizing lines in store.

A mobile point of sale (mPOS) device can take this one step further, supporting contactless payments via tap to pay from anywhere in the store. If your store associates are equipped with a mPOS device, there’s no need for customers to line up behind a register. 

Simplifying the checkout process helps to ensure a positive experience with your store and increases the likelihood of repeat business.

Collect Consumer Data to Boost Personalization

Delivering a seamless checkout experience can be impeded by how much customer data you try to manually scoop up along the way. Forcing customers to create an account before making a purchase is a good way to get them to abandon their cart. So is requesting too much information in-store at the point of sale. 

However, digital payments made through a mobile checkout system or a tap to pay transaction provide a valuable opportunity to capture customer data without any form-filling. You can also offer to send an email receipt and add them to the mailing list or loyalty program without having to request and type in an email address.

With a phone number, you can invite customers to double-opt into marketing communications or to receive updates from store associates about new products. These things will set you up to personalize your next interaction with that hopefully repeat buyer. 

Be Upfront About Additional Costs

One of the most common reasons shoppers walk away from a purchase is unexpected costs. In particular, high shipping costs can be a deal-breaker. Shipping costs should be defined upfront to avoid surprising shoppers and having them reconsider their sale with you. 

This is true online and also in-store. During an endless aisle transaction where you are ordering something for a customer in store from another location, you can let them know what delivery costs are for standard shipping, two-day, next-day, etc. That way, they can choose what suits their wallet best.

Offering free shipping, particularly if a customer spends a certain amount, is also an ideal option. Or, you can offer fulfillment options, such as buy online pickup in-store (BOPIS), curbside pickup, and ship-from-store, to eliminate shipping costs all together and give the customer even more choice.

Tap into Mixed Cart Transactions

Brands are carrying less inventory in-store these days, so it is more likely that a customer will want to buy something that’s not available. Maybe it is a shirt to go with the pants you do have on-site in their preferred size. 

No customer wants to have to complete two separate transactions, though – one for the item in their hand and one for delivery. With a mixed cart transaction, associates can sell items from their own store’s inventory and items from other locations for delivery to the customer in a single transaction. All the details of the endless aisle order, such as delivery costs, are determined in the same workflow as the on-the-spot sale.

Mixed cart transactions allow brands to consistently deliver a more seamless shopping experience. And one that is truly omnichannel––bridging the gap between digital and physical retail.

Invest in a Consumer App

A consumer app can be a very useful tool for satisfying customers who like to make purchases from their mobile phones, as it offers the best possible mobile shopping experience. 

With an app, consumers can skip the line and complete transactions on their own. In-store shoppers can utilize self-checkout to simply scan their items and pay in the app. During the pandemic, Nike launched this feature to make in-person shopping safer. Using the Nike app, shoppers can scan product barcodes to request fitting options and check themselves out.

Similarly, online shoppers can use a consumer app in “Store Mode” to pick up their online order with one tap. Pickup is the last step in the buying process for click-and-collect shoppers so you want to delight them with a really simple and easy order handover.

This level of convenience will be sure to create loyal customers.

Offer a Seamless Checkout Experience Across Channels

You must offer a seamless checkout experience wherever customers are able to make purchases. Whether a customer is in-store, on a desktop, or on a mobile phone, they shouldn’t feel like the checkout process is daunting.

An omnichannel strategy will help support a seamless checkout experience. NewStore offers omnichannel-as-a-service so that you can offer your customers an amazing shopping experience from anywhere. 

Try a demo today.

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