Top tips: Optimise your order confirmation page

Leaving Money on the Table
Are you making the most of marketing opportunities when you make a sale? Probably not according to a new study by Owned it, who specialise in helping retailers optimise campaigns, measure results and deliver incentives.

Owned it’s new study “Leaving Money on the Table – how order confirmation pages are used to increase sales” reviews the efforts of 30 leading UK online retailers, including Amazon, Argos and Marks & Spencer, to identify which brands endeavour to increase conversions via social media, incentives and product referrals on the final stage of the checkout process – http://tamebay.com/wp-admin/post-new.php#category-allthe order confirmation page.

Top retailers

Amazon Order Completion PageTop performing retailers were Amazon, Marks & Spencer, New Look and House of Fraser. Compared to others, these retailers have optimised order confirmation pages to offer a combination of prominent social media elements, incentives and/or the ability for customers to refer their purchases via various channels such as social networks and emails.

Amazon ranked top in the research offering the ability to share purchases through social networks and emails.

Marks & Spencer also made good use of the opportunities an order confirmation page presents, with clear signals for customers to follow the brand on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest. It also incentivised customers via a £100 gift card.

New Look’s one screen page offered clear signals to engage with the brand and encouraged repeat purchases.

House of Fraser order completion pageHouse of Fraser packed its order confirmation page with offers to incentivise repeat buys, with money off, reward points and encouragement to follow on social networks.

At the bottom of the table almost a third of retailers provided a simple online confirmation page with no incentives or opportunities for customers to engage with the brand further.

Social media elements

Owned it expected to find prominent Facebook buttons in the majority of retailer’s order confirmation pages. While 53% of the retailers included a Facebook button, only 13% displayed Facebook and other social media buttons prominently. By prominent, Owned it means in colour, above the fold and large enough to see easily. Often these buttons were in the top right of the page. Further, only 3% of retailers asked their customers to take a specific action, such as House of Fraser asking customers to “Like us on Facebook.”

Facebook and Twitter were the most popular social media channels, while 20% pointed their customers towards the latest social media community Pinterest. Only 17% asked their customers to follow a blog.

Incentives – long and short term

Incentives to continue shopping varied, with 7% of retailers offering money off or cash back vouchers, ranging from £10 cash back to 15% off next purchases; while other incentives included 30% off for new customers shopping in store to free business cards.

Lost opportunities – some interesting predictions

The potential opportunity being missed by retailers that are not optimising their order confirmation pages is staggering: taking Argos (number two in the IMRG/Experian Hitwise Hot Shops List top 100) as an example, online sales account for £1.6 billion of turnover. Taking a conservative view, even if 1% revenue is increased by encouraging customers to take a social action, such as referring their purchase via social media or email, Argos could conceivably see an increase in sales of £16 million – all for the cost of adding a referral feature at the point of sale. Owned it’s industry data shows that a much higher follow-on sale rate of 5-15% is being achieved by retailers – if Argos could replicate these figures, the potential increase in revenue through social sharing at the point of sale ranges from £80 million to £240 million.

Top tips to optimise your order confirmation page

Using the information contained within the study, Owned it’s co-founder Sonu Bubna sets out some top tips for retailers looking to optimise their order confirmation page:

  • Proactively ask your customers to engage in social actions such as like/ follow your brand and share the purchases products
  • Track product sharing or social media follows
  • Offer a combination of immediate and longer term incentives
  • Identify key brand advocates also understand how and why your customers are engaging on social media
  • Optimise campaigns for different products/customers
  • Consolidate information into one page

You can download the full Leaving Money on the Table – how order confirmation pages are used to increase sales study from the Owned it website.