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Improve the UX of your checkout process safely with Frosmo

improve UX safely

The checkout process is a critical part of any ecommerce business. No wonder that most companies are afraid to run UX experiments that touch the checkout flow. The result: You are stuck with an ancient UX because making any changes is risky.

Running UX experiments on your checkout page is crucial to generating more revenue. However, if you break your checkout page during UX experiments, customers may not be able to complete their purchases. In addition, the risk of breaking one of the multiple credit card and payment integrations may stall UX experiments.

Here are some of the most common points of concern:

  • Page load times become too slow – especially with dynamic content.
  • Users are unable to enter input in critical fields.
  • Added items are not visible in the shopping cart.
  • There are broken links or missing images on the site.
  • Creating a new account or logging in to an existing account is not possible.
  • There are errors in payment options or delivery methods.

Luckily, you can do UX experiments and improvements safely without breaking the payment funnel and other existing functionality.

Here are 5 ways Frosmo can help you:

1. Quality assurance

The main reason for doing QA and testing is to simulate and improve UX, hence quality checks have a significant impact. Frosmo can go through the checkout funnel with all possible combinations of purchase add-ons and make sure that the UX changes won’t break functionality. This is one way to ensure that you don’t break the UI and the checkout funnel. For example, when a customer wants to add additional delivery methods and they are unable to do it themselves due to some technical limitations, Frosmo first tests all multiple combinations before rendering the site live.

Regardless of testing, bugs and crashes can irritate users and delay task completion. But bugs can be fixed without impacting the user experience. Ideally, you should find bugs during QA and not during user testing. Team members identify key user-behavior patterns and make sure they are free of bugs and any workflow blocks that users might encounter. Identifying bugs from the start allows rapidly changing and correcting the code, and making any changes that are necessary for a fantastic user experience. A sanity test is conducted after testing to ensure that the bugs were fixed.

software bug

 

When you make a change on the website, you may introduce all sorts of mistakes. Things can break over time. QA goes through all the checkout processes before any changes go live. When you know the areas that won’t change, you can build regression tests and repeat them every testing cycle to note applicable standards and checks.

A complete overhaul isn’t necessary all the time. Because some of your legacy systems are probably old and hard to touch, simple changes are often enough. One change at a time. Small changes can also have a high impact on conversion rates, but it’s more likely that big ones have a more noticeable effect. Sometimes people are reluctant to change and want to keep the same UI so it’s more familiar to their users.

2. Experimentation

Experimentation helps solve problems to achieve a good user experience. Instead of just going with gut feeling or intuition, you can test many different options in lightweight experiments, target potential users, and check which changes improve conversion rates or sales. After this, you should do another round of experimentation because the user experience is an ever-evolving landscape.

Continuous small improvements to the page make A/B testing even more important. Measure changes that happen directly on the page on which the experiment is running, say in the checkout page. For example, if you want to A/B test your checkout page but don’t have enough conversions, test the page to learn more about the users and help bring in more relevant traffic.

Let’s say you are running a test on your checkout page, where users have two options: either click ‘Sign up today’, or click ‘Log in’. If the main goal is to get users to place orders, the distance between the experiment page and the conversion page is huge. But if your aim is for the customers to finish checkout, you should run the experiment on the ‘Sign up today’ and ‘Log in’ buttons, so you can see the direct impact on the changes made.

Sign up

Testing high-impact changes is challenging and changing many things at once is difficult, but creates bigger changes in conversion rate and a statistically significant result. An adverse result can also give valuable insights about the customers, which can be useful for future tests. In the end, when dozens of possible solutions have been disproven, you will find the superior one – perhaps not perfect, but the best so far.

3. Data analysis

After the user research and testing/experimentation, and once the code has been developed and tested, it’s time to render the website live. An essential part of ‘going live’ is implementing and interpreting data analytics. The results can unravel valuable business insights, and identify patterns in user behavior. Analytics validate the idea and allow any organization or individual to make data-driven decisions and avoid expensive mistakes before the page goes live. You can watch for any potential errors during usage.

analytics

 

Continuous analysis of the test results while the page is running has been crucial to making data-driven decisions. Determining the part of your website that needs the most improvement helps you to avoid wasting time on testing things that don’t need changing.

Frosmo offers testing capabilities and allows fast time-to-market for visitors to continuously see new elements on the site. For example, the Frosmo platform provides the multi-armed bandit option for variations. Multi-armed bandit is a machine learning solution that determines which variant of the experiment is performing best. This variant is then automatically the one shown to users most often. This reduces the need for manual analysis to choose the ‘winning’ variant. At the same time, if trends change, the variation distribution changes automatically to favor the currently best solution.

4. Test for modifications

Testing is a great way to understand your current process. If there are any issues with placing an order, this must be clearly communicated before the customer wastes time in entering any additional information. Focus the tests around the essential areas of the page. This often has a more significant impact on the conversion rate than testing minimal modifications on other pages.

Tests should be conducted regularly, for example, twice a day, to make sure that customer-critical functionality is working as intended. Scheduling tests, once they’re written, is the responsibility of both Frosmo and its customer. We define the critical functionality, such as the checkout funnel, together with the users, and we at Frosmo then decide what to test to make sure it works. We can conduct an intern test to see whether the user can add products into the cart, proceed to the checkout page, fill out the fields, and leave the payment gateway. The test can be scheduled to be run at any interval.

coding

Frosmo has developed a solution called Workspaces that allows front-end teams to safely develop and test website modifications and other features in the production environment. This unique solution uses JavaScript, which eliminates the need for separate development servers and works based on the same principles used to show unique digital experience layers to website visitors. With an environment that looks and behaves just like the live site, you can avoid unexpected errors and easily test, stage, and share changes.

By testing changes on a live site without development servers, there is no risk of having website changes that work perfectly during development but cause errors once in production. This also enables easy collaboration between front-end and ecommerce teams.

5. Error test monitors for customer conversion startup

Choosing the software that works best lets you efficiently run your desired tests with minimal effort or coding skills. Frosmo uses an open-source error tracking tool for monitoring errors and checking whether everything is fine with your site, and not just in the standard browsers. This tool monitors what the users are experiencing in the website at any given time, helps developers monitor and fix crashes in real time, and provides the health status of all modifications on the site.

Our team-specific dashboards show all our customers, current error rates on their sites, and what the errors are about. This is a pretty neat feature for error tracking, allowing Frosmo to catch the errors even before the site owner does.

At Frosmo, we make our customers feel safe about developing their sites and implementing modifications with tried-and-tested industry best practices. We can respond to new issues like the changes you make on your site, even when something goes wrong. The error-tracking tool is not just about modifications, but it also gives information about any abnormal changes, such as if conversions dropped significantly, or transactions count dropped.

Conclusion

Remember that your website is an extension of your brand. A bad user experience can be the thin line between a visitor becoming a potential or even loyal customer and becoming “the one that got away”. A website requires continuous tracking, testing, and maintenance. With quality assurance and product team working in tandem, a great user experience is within reach. The courage to question conventions and implement a test-driven culture helps you to create the best user experience for your customers.

With Frosmo Workspaces, testing and collaborating is easier and faster without affecting the live content of your site. Workspaces improves the user experience safely as it eliminates the risks of discrepancies between different environments. To know more, watch the recent webinar recording.

If you think this is the right solution for you, please contact sales@frosmo.com.

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About the writer:

Vesa Hyppönen is a team lead developer at Frosmo working in the customer service function. Working as a full-time programmer since 1998, he has vast experience in different fields ranging from early 2000s web, SAAS, native mobile in j2me/Symbian/Android/iOS, 3d games and the modern web application stack. He spends a large part of his time thinking up solutions for customers, be it in JavaScript, PHP, some Lisp language, or even Ruby. His career days started with web applications using databases and ASP/PHP scripting, but the focus has now shifted to e-commerce solutions on the front and back end, such as A/B testing, data integrations, smart recommendations leveraging machine learning and augmented/virtual reality.

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