Millions of visits don’t guarantee sales

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Seven million online site visits will fail to result in a sale in the build-up to Christmas, according to the latest research by e-commerce system provider, Formisimo.

The study found that online retailers could lose out due to either their website or checkout being too complicated.

It also revealed that, while the majority of retailers will see an increase in profit during the festive season, a significant amount of business is at risk of “slipping through the net.”

The company said only 27 per cent of visitors who reach the checkout stage will actually complete a purchase, due to the stress of high traffic on websites.

“The checkout process on retail sites is the final stage prior to payment. Issues, errors and confusion at this crucial point restrict transactions and can often cause shoppers to go elsewhere,” said marketing director at Formisimo, Tom New.

“Customers who shift to another store due to technical issues, user interface issues or pricing, are estimated to make up 82 per cent of the abandoners.”

New added that retailers investing in costly marketing campaigns for Christmas are wasting their money if the checkout stage is too complicated.

“Often simple changes to forms or processes can result in a significant increase in sales without any increase in advertising costs.

“More importantly, customers will have a better experience of a business and a brand all year round.”

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