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  1. #1
    Kung Fu Master Eathan's Avatar
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    Cart layout studies?
    Hi all, I'm wanting to do some cart revamps with an eye towards clarity and better conversions and I'm wondering if anyone can point out any good articles, or studies on cart design/layout.

    For example:

    Do thumbnail images of items in the cart on the "view cart" page enhance conversion rates? Intuition says sure, but intuition isn't always correct.

    Do up-sells within the cart lead to bigger orders or more cart abandonment?

    Does requiring a customer to create an account as part of the checkout process alienate new customers as much as it makes life easy on return customers? Are there ways to make it a win win, like a simple "remember me" option that then asks the customer to create a password?

    Anyway, you get the idea. As many carts as I've been involved with over the years I have my own thoughts, but I've never actually seen a comprehensive study on cart performance.

    Thanks for any input!
    Eathan Mertz

    Black Cat Mining - Gold Prospecting & Rockhounding Equipment

  2. #2
    Classic Rocker Mack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eathan
    Does requiring a customer to create an account as part of the checkout process alienate new customers as much as it makes life easy on return customers? Are there ways to make it a win win, like a simple "remember me" option that then asks the customer to create a password?
    I don't know about the other stuff. As a consumer, and a store makes me sign up for an account before I buy anything, I hate that.

    Just my opinion, when I buy online, all a merchant needs is how I pay for it and where I want it sent. When they make me sign up for an account, start sending me unsolicited newsletters, collecting information they don't need to complete the sale, I avoid them in the future.

  3. #3
    Kung Fu Master Eathan's Avatar
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    Same way I've always felt. I've always hated having to create an account with a site for a one-off order, but I've been pleasantly surprised by the amount of repeat business we're getting at Black Cat.

    Many have ordered three, four, five times, even ten times and we've come to know quite a few by name. For those folks, I like the idea of giving them the option of creating an account and storing their billing and shipping info.

    As for emails, our newsletter is an optional check box during checkout. Not like a few big name sites I can think of...
    Eathan Mertz

    Black Cat Mining - Gold Prospecting & Rockhounding Equipment

  4. #4
    The Seal of Aproval rematt's Avatar
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    I think the "option" of creating an account is great. When I order from a merchant the first time I rarely create an account. If I find that I'm coming back to them more and more I like the option for convenience, especially gift sites that allow me to maintain a list of recipients.

    To me it would seem that the more barriers you put in front of the buyer the more time you give them to change their mind.

    -rematt
    "I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant." - Richard Nixon

  5. #5
    Kung Fu Master Eathan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rematt
    To me it would seem that the more barriers you put in front of the buyer the more time you give them to change their mind.
    Exactly!

    Found some interesting reading on this stuff at marketingexperimentsblog.com. Not been there before, but so far it seems like some bright minds at work.
    Eathan Mertz

    Black Cat Mining - Gold Prospecting & Rockhounding Equipment

  6. #6
    Affiliate Manager
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    I can't stand signing up for an account before I buy something... as for returning customers its good to use sessions or cookies to have the customers billing and shipping info pre-filled when they return.

    I think thumbs in the cart is a good idea... I don't see how that could hurt conversions unless you have a horrid thumbnail or something. It's always good for the customer to see what is in their cart and can cut down on customers ordering the wrong items.

    I do all my upselling on my site itself with the "Similar Products" feature on the product pages. I haven't tried upselling in the cart itself but it's something I wouldn't mind trying in the future.

  7. #7
    Kung Fu Master Eathan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chet_B
    I do all my upselling on my site itself with the "Similar Products" feature on the product pages. I haven't tried upselling in the cart itself but it's something I wouldn't mind trying in the future.
    We've had really good success with adding product suggestions to related product pages like you mention, and in some cases we've handled up-sells by adding products as options on other products and that works too. I've wanted to avoid GoDaddy syndrome, where checkout becomes annoying, so haven't touched the cart, but I've seen success with it elsewhere.

    Rather than a true up-sell, I'm thinking more along the lines of IF a customer is close to one of our discounted shipping levels ($100 and $200) that the cart would display something like "Spend only $6 more to qualify for up $20 off shipping".

    I think a lot of people miss the fact that we offer discounted shipping on larger orders. I actually called a guy once to say "Hey, $0.40 more and I can ship your order free and save you $16." He was pretty happy about it.

    Another option would be a simple graphic within the body of the cart showing the offer.
    Eathan Mertz

    Black Cat Mining - Gold Prospecting & Rockhounding Equipment

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