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6 ways to optimise your checkout for cross-border shoppers

Monday 17 December 2018 | 08:03 AM CET

Lassi Eronen, Trustly: "Online retailers that wish to take advantage of the growing cross-border ecommerce market should focus on curbing cart abandonment"

Global cross-border B2C ecommerce market is projected to more than double by 2021, reaching USD 424 billion. It’s a huge opportunity that every online business needs to think about.

International shoppers abandon carts for different reasons than local customers. In this article, we share 6 key actions that online retailers can take to improve the experience for cross-border shoppers and increase conversion rates.

Show prices in local currency

When Swedish shoppers visit an English retailer, it does them no good to see the price of an item in British Pounds. Showing items in the local currency of the shopper will make pricing feel relatable and create a safer buying experience.

Adjust language and tone of voice

Similarly to showing prices in local currency, online retailers should adjust the language and tone of the voice to make messaging more relatable. This will keep shoppers engaged and make them feel more at home making a purchase from a foreign retailer. If you find it difficult to localise the product descriptions at scale, you can start with few items that are selling well in a given market and see if you can increase conversion rates for those products.

Publish local seals of approval

Online shoppers are often hesitant to buy goods from abroad if the brand is unknown to them. Publishing market specific testimonials and reviews, as well as quality seals and certification marks will boost shoppers’ confidence and trust in your online store. In the German market, for instance, the use of TÜV certification will give your brand more credibility.

Offer localised payment choices

Lack of a preferred payment method usually leads to cart abandonment. A study conducted by Trustly revealed that 77% of shoppers said that payment mix affected their decision to purchase with an online retailer. This sentiment was especially present in Spain, Estonia, Germany, Poland, Finland, and Sweden. High converting businesses understand that payment preferences vary heavily from country to country. It is equally important to display payment alternatives visibly on your site.

Debit and credit cards have dominated checkouts for a long time, but a major shift in consumer preference is taking place. According to Worldpay’s Global Payments Report 2017, over half of all online transactions will soon be made using alternative payment methods. The report also forecasts that online bank payments will overtake credit and debit cards by 2024.

Capitalise on instant refunds

Most ecommerce sites now offer free returns, which customers have learned to expect. It can be said that free returns can close the sale, but great returns create loyal customers. Freeness is only one side of the return experience. If returning goods requires a complicated process, and the refund takes several weeks, shoppers are likely to try their luck with another shop next time.

The link between loyalty and speed of refunds is clear. A recent study by Trustly showed that 95% of shoppers would be more loyal to online retailers if they received a refund within the same day. One downside of card payments is that refunds can take anywhere from 3 to 20 days to settle. While customers wait for their money, they are likely postponing further shopping and looking for alternatives. However, with online bank payments, money could be returned to the shopper’s account within minutes of merchant authorising the transaction.

By offering instant refunds through online bank payments, online retailers have an opportunity to increase shopper loyalty and revenue per shopper without fundamentally changing their business model or product offering. This can increase ROI from acquisition activities and also help in differentiating you from competitors.

Streamline the checkout UX

When you design your checkout for cross-border shoppers, it’s good to keep some basics in mind. First, make it possible to buy from your site without registering an account. Most people want to purchase from you at least once before registering an account. This can give you an edge over some large ecom sites that force customers to create an account.

Second, display international delivery times and alternatives clearly. Your shoppers are seeking reassurance and want to know when and how the delivery is going to arrive. Finally yet importantly, don’t forget to include relevant details in confirmation emails and receipts.

This editorial was first published in our Payments and Commerce Market Guide 2018-2019. The Guide presents the key trends and developments in global and regional payment methods by highlighting the innovation, challenges, and developments in the use of the most important payment methods across geographies and verticals.

About Lassi Eronen

Lassi works at Trustly as a Business Marketing Manager, helping ecommerce merchants make better use of online banking payments. He has worked a decade on growing businesses online, first in the software industry and later within payments. He is often found debating the digital marketing team about how to drive online conversions, or filling up his coffee cup “for one last time.”

 

About Trustly

Trustly is a Swedish fintech company that makes online banking payments fast, simple, and secure. By signing just one agreement with Trustly, ecommerce brands can accept payments from and issue instant refunds to shoppers in 29 European countries, in all local currencies. To learn more, visit trustly.com/ecommerce.

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