Your payment forms play a critical role in your online business. They represent the moment your website visitors become customers. It’s the key moment of conversion, so you need to get it right.
Sadly, many payment forms fail to meet customers’ standards. If your customers have a question, fail to understand something, or grow frustrated with your form, there’s a strong chance they’ll abandon your site and take their business to one of your competitors.
In this article, we’d like to go over the common issues customers have with payment forms. Do any of your customers make these complaints?
“I’m not sure I trust this site.”
Trust is a key component to the customer experience. People won’t send you their hard-earned money if they think you won’t uphold your end of the deal or protect their sensitive financial information.
This is one reason it’s useful to use a popular payment processor like Stripe. Customers see that logo and award you the same level of trust they have for that company.
Part of your checkout design (images and copy) should provide evidence that you’re trustworthy. Pepper trust badges throughout your site, including…
- Credit card logos
- Awards and honors
- Logos of customers, partners, or clients
- Customer satisfaction badges
- Security seals
- App store logos/buttons
- Testimonials from past customers and clients
- Anything else that associates you with something your customers already trust
“This site is slow.”
When a customer reaches checkout, they’ve completed the fun part of the buying process. They enjoyed browsing your products and services, but checkout is a necessary chore to get what they want. If you make that chore harder by forcing them to sit while your page loads, there’s a good chance they’ll abandon your site for another.
“That’s not the price I expected.”
There’s a good chance your customers will leave your payment form if it displays a price they don’t expect. In fact, according to the Baymard Institute, unexpected costs are one of the top reasons people abandon their shopping carts and checkout pages.
What’s interesting is that people are usually willing to pay the price – as long as you show it to them before you ask them to pay. But they’ll grow suspicious of you if you wait until the end to show them the real total.
The solution is simple: Show your customers all the costs upfront, including extra fees, delivery charges, regional taxes, etc.
“You don’t know my credit card provider?”
There’s no need to ask your customers for the name of their credit card provider. You can determine that based on the first numbers of the card, so it’s best to eliminate this field.
If you use WP Simple Pay, our payment form skips all the unnecessary questions so nothing distracts your customer from completing the payment process.
“Ugh, you don’t let me pay with X.”
Imagine how frustrating it would be for a customer to reach the end of the checkout process only to learn that they can’t pay with their preferred method. No one is going to open a new account or sign up for a credit card just to make a purchase on your site. They’ll just go find someone else who will take their money.
This problem is especially infuriating for customers if you don’t take a common payment method, such as PayPal or their preferred credit card.
Offering multiple payment methods is key to getting more sales. It also makes your customers more comfortable about their purchase. If a customer gets to use their trusted Visa card, they’ll be far more likely to trust using it with you.
This is why we recently updated WP Simple Pay to let you accept payments through Apple Pay and Google Pay. Plenty of users already trust these companies with their money, so it’s smart to leverage that trust on your site. Read our documentation to learn how.
“Why do they need that?”
Your customers expect to give out some of their personal information during the checkout process. I understand that you need their name, billing address, and a few other data points. But if your customers can’t understand why you need a particular piece of data, they could become wary.
For example, let’s say you’re a marketing consultant. You ask all the usual questions on your payment form, in addition to one other: “Which operating system do you use?” The answer to this question helps you recommend additional software products, but your customers may see it as unnecessary. They may question why you need a data point like that.
The best solution is to only ask for what you need to keep the process moving. You can always ask for additional information later. If you absolutely must ask an additional question, provide plenty of context on the page so the customer understands why you need it.
“This is so complicated!”
Payment forms should be simple and smooth. Your customers should never doubt what they’re supposed to do or what comes next. The whole process should be linear and straightforward.
In many cases, this means stripping your site of extra elements that distract them from the payment process. Don’t give the option to click to a new page or browse new products or services because they may not find their way back to checkout.
This is why WP Simple Pay uses an overlay element for the payment form. There is no doubt what you’re supposed to interact with.
Simplifying your payment process also means not using CAPTCHA. Verifying that a human is behind each form submission is important, but CAPTCHA is arduous and tedious for users because they have to solve equations, type random letters and numbers, or identify “all the pictures with a mailbox.”
Instead, use reCAPTCHA, a tool to prevent non-humans from interacting with your page that doesn’t annoy your customers. All they have to do is click a box. Learn how to set up reCAPTCHA with WP Simple Pay.
“I don’t understand…”
This is a general complaint that applies to a lot of situations. Basically, customers aren’t likely to complete the payment process if they have a question about the price of their product, the shipping, or some other variable. It’s your job to make them comfortable by answering all of their questions long before check out.
Now, obviously you can’t anticipate and pre-resolve every possible objection. So it’s important to give your customers a way to contact you if they have any issues with your payment form. Place an email address prominently on the page or add a live chat feature to your site.
“There are too many upsells.”
It’s one thing to prompt your customers with one or two upsell products or services during the checkout process. But it’s not smart to force your customers to click or scroll through a dozen offers before they can buy the thing they really want.
If you put too many upsell offers in front of your customers, not only do you extend the checkout process (which is detrimental to your conversions), you also make the customer or client concerned that you only see them as a wallet.
Choose and display one or two upsell offers that are the most valuable to your client. Don’t ask them to turn a $100 purchase into a $500 purchase, to buy a completely unrelated product/service, or to suddenly commit to a long subscription plan.
“Which field is wrong?”
Sometimes your customers will input bad information into your payment form. For instance, they might submit a credit card number with too few digits, or an expiration date or email address in the incorrect format.
This kind of thing happens all the time, but it’s not a big deal as long as you tell the customer which field is incorrect. If your form only gives a generic “Invalid field” error without directing the customer to the bad field, your customer won’t know what to correct without going through the form again. That’s incredibly frustrating and may cause customers to abandon checkout.
Make sure that whichever technology you use to power your payment forms validates each field, preferably as the customer uses it. This way they’ll know where to correct their mistakes so they only have to submit once.
Now that you know what your customers don’t like about payment forms, ask yourself if your forms make any of these mistakes. Change your forms if you think your customers could make any of these mistakes.
Need a payment form your customers will love? Check out WP Simple Pay. It’s simple, lightweight, and suitable for most online businesses.