How To Design a Checkout Process That Converts


On average, 68% of consumers abandon their cart before making a purchase.
This might be down to their credit card being declined, a lack of free delivery options or maybe just a phone call from their friend – much of the time though, it’s just because it feels too much like hard work to the shopper.

Most common reasons why someone abandons a checkout:

common reasons to abandon cart

Statista 2015

Spreadshirt recently redesigned their checkout and have already seen an 11% year-over-year lift in conversion. Hugo Smoter, Spreadshirt’s Head of Global Marketing has 7 tips to help design a checkout that converts.

1. Create a Defined and Comprehensive Process

To build the perfect checkout you need to start with a detailed plan and vision. Have design sessions with your executives and key stakeholders. Create a clear process and roadmap of what you want to achieve. Spreadshirt’s Head of Marketing also suggests user testing as part of your process. Watch what users are pressing as well as what they’re not. Find out where they’re getting stuck and what’s taking too long.

2. Design for Speed and Adaptability

Abandonment rates increase to 87% when there’s a 2-second delay in load time during transaction results. So it’s important to eliminate any steps where they could potentially jump ship. You could speed up your checkout process by implementing quick payment types like PayPal which already store and autofill the user’s info.  On a more technical side, work with your team to decrease  the loading speed of the page. Spreadshirt got theirs down to 4 seconds.


3. Be Device & Platform Agnostic

Make your checkout page responsive even if the rest of your site isn’t. Spreadshirt said mobile orders increased by 60% even though traffic was relatively the same. Remember to test your checkout process across devices. We recommend using a tool like Browserstack.


4. Be Globally Responsive

Legal and cultural e-commerce expectations are different in each country. Adjust your translations, payment types, currencies for the countries you serve. Be sure to display the correct contact details for each country or region where you have a presence.


5. Keep it Simple

Make it as simple as possible to checkout. You want to create as few distractions as possible so only ask for your customers’ essential data. Spreadshirt suggests creating a single page checkout and don’t require registration. You should also consider adding in full back-button functionality. No one wants to start the checkout process over if they forgot to add something or wanted to keep browsing.


6. Build Trust Through Safety & Security

Add recommendations, a phone number and contact details, third party trust badges, and if you have any guarantees. Your customers need to know you’re a legit company and care about their security. Don’t clutter the page too much, but give just enough to build trust.


7. Contingency Options

Let’s be honest. Not all users want to checkout on mobile. Spreadshirt’s users admitted when browsing their site on mobile they wouldn’t purchase even if they found something they liked. According to their mobile survey, 60% of their users would still go back to their desktops to buy. This caused them to add a “check out later” button to their checkout page.




On mobile (shown above) it’s prominent in the middle of the page and when viewing on desktop it’s a small button in the right hand corner.  Spreadshirt also added the email address field above name and address which doubled their capture of email addresses.



Bringing in buyers is the focus for many retailers, but you should start focusing on that final click to purchase. The key to converting your visitors is improving speed and functionality, implementing responsive design, and creating a smooth and secure payment process. In addition to redesigning your checkout, you should also consider these abandoned cart email tactics.

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