Dear Merchant, 2010 called - it wants its checkout process back. Sincerely, All Your Customers
Google reported over 5 years ago that 90% of smart phone device owners toggled between multiple screens while shopping - which translated into more buying. At the time, native apps were the name of the game and merchants of all verticals were competing for screen time.
To get meaningful screen time with a customer meant:
1. a merchant's website needed to be mobile responsive (including the checkout process) and/or
2. they needed to have an app that was optimized across all devices and web browsers.
The evolution of streamlining the two has morphed into Progressive Web Apps (PWAs). These apps, unlike native apps, are built at the browser level and allow merchants to be easily found by buyers. PWAs also support responsive engagement with customers which ultimately makes it easier to earn -and keep - that coveted screen time.
While PWAs are great and provide oodles of browser based shopping experience benefits to customers and engagement opportunities for merchants, many PWAs are falling short at the point of checkout by throwing the customer back into a non-optimized checkout process.
Imagine being a customer that just had the ultimate online shopping experience. You found everything you wanted, the app pushed over great suggestions and a helpful sales bot named Sally located the gift for Mom you needed.
You're happy, you feel accomplished and then - BOOM - you're thrown into 2010's checkout process that is going to take more time to deal with than you spent actually shopping.
No one wants that and often times it causes buyers to abandon their carts.
I'll confess, usually time is of the essence when I'm shopping. I'll abandon a shopping cart quicker-than-quick if presented a checkout process that requires anything other than the bare minimum to take my money. If there was a way to checkout using osmosis, I'd invent a mobile phone head strap. Fortunately, there are technologies on the horizon that can help reduce checkout friction.
The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) has corralled the internet giants and together with acquirers, browser vendors, card networks, payments platforms and merchants, created a standard for web based payments and have launched the Payment Request API.
Yasss for web based payments...
For shoppers, there are a number of reasons to jump on board the web based payments train. For businesses wanting to reduce checkout friction below are a few wins...
Write once, run in any browser on any form factor to offer checkout process consistent with PWA shopping experience.
Lower cost of front end development
APIs built on standards - replacing web forms and facilitating more payment methods without adding UI complexity.
Reduce cart abandonment
According to Baymard Institute, user checkout experience accounted for 3 of top 5 reasons shoppers abandoned their shopping carts. Web payments standards helps address those areas.
Reuse of browser level, securely stored payment information reduces checkout complexity and steps to payment regardless of device customer is shopping from.
Preserve merchant brand experience
Modal window for Payment Handler preserves merchant's context and brand experience through the entire shopping and checkout experience.
Where do I learn more?
Attend Stromden's webinar January 17th @9am PT:
Web Payments Standards
Having a clear e-commerce business plan (existing & future) that will scale as new payment methods and updated standards become available is key to growing your company.
Stromden works closely with companies like W3C to ensure our clients have information and access to resources that influence trends and innovation that will effect their e-commerce payments initiatives.
Become part of our Payments Ask Me Anything universe and stay up to date on topics like Payments Request API.