Payment process optimization

The ease of payment is an essential part of the smoothness of online shopping. For this reason, it is important to pay attention to the optimization of the payment process. This article contains four tips that are worth checking out:

1. Eliminate unnecessary intermediate steps

There are often too many intermediate steps between the purchase decision and the thank you page. The longer or more difficult the payment process is, the more likely that the shopping cart will be abandoned.

When asking for customer and delivery information, ask only for relevant information. So consider if the customer's postal address is needed if the order is delivered by email. Or whether it is necessary to create an account in your online store just to place an order. It would be beneficial if all order information can be filled out on a single page and then the customer is guided smoothly to pay for their order.

The best case scenario would allow customers to select the payment method on the same page. In Paytrail's service, you can bypass the payment page, if it is possible in your e-commerce platform. When bypassing the payment page, once the payment method is selected the customer is redirected to the payment method's service where they can complete the payment.

2. Offer a comprehensive selection of payment methods and present them clearly

An order may be abandoned if your customer cannot find their preferred payment method. It's worthwhile offer a comprehensive selection of payment methods as possible. You should offer at least:

  • Credit/debit cards and Finnish online banks
  •  Buy now, Pay later payment methods
  • Mobile payment methods that are popular because they are fast and easy to use

Check out what payment methods Paytrail offers. You can check the Merchant panel to see which of these payment methods you have active.

Also consider how the selection of payment methods is presented to the customer. One clear way is to implement the payment method selection with icons. In the below image, the payment methods are clear and have a functional appearance.


3. Keep the customer informed of the situation throughout the payment process

Clearly state the stages thru the purchase process and keep customers informed and what will happen next. This will increase the probability of the customer completing their order. 

Pay attention to these things:

  • It is good to ask for the customer's information as early as possible. This way, you will have the customer's email address and if the order isn't completed you can send them a message letting them know that they can still complete their order. 
  • Use visual instructions, images and icons to guide the customer. For example, a green check mark can be displayed to a customer when they have entered the required information. 
  • Avoid unpleasant surprises by displaying the final order amount early enough to the customer, including possible delivery and payment method fees.
  • Offer your customer the opportunity to modify their order. The customer should be able to see the inventory amount and be able to edit the number of items and features such as size or color  even after going to the checkout. The final amount should also update automatically according to the changes.
  • Allow the customer check their order details before moving to payment.
  • Even seemingly small things, such as wording, can affect the final result. For example, "Proceed to pay" is a good way to name the button with which the customer is directed to pay, because it clearly describes to the customer what will happen next.

4. Test the process regularly

Test the functionality of your payment process regularly, paying attention to the number of steps in the checkout flow, payment methods, possible interrupted orders and distractions. You can also compare the functionality of your own online store's checkout flow against other businesses in the same industry. When you identify problem areas, take action and make the necessary changes.

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