Case Study: A/B Testing Streamlined Checkout Flow for Better CX

June 20, 2019

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In marketing and optimization we talk a lot about reducing friction to conversion, but it can at times be hard to quantify. In this A/B test, the optimization team had a suspicion that an unnecessary checkout step might be causing drop-off without adding much value, and so they put the question to a A/B test. They were able to quantify and understand exactly what part of their checkout flow helped and hurt the user experience.

The Brand

This brand is a high end hotel company with a collection of historic estate hotels around the UK.

The A/B Test

This booking engine on this brand’s website contains 3 steps: room-suites, add-ons, and payment. But, the brand doesn’t generate much revenue from add-ons. The optimization team wondered if the add-ons step might actually be causing unnecessary friction. They hypothesized that by removing the add-ons step completely order conversions would increase without negative impact on average order value.

They ran a split A/B test with one variation. The new variation featured just two steps for the checkout process.

Results And Next Steps

This A/B test ran for 45 days, saw over 112,000 users and over 205,000 visits. Removing the add-on step completely made a huge difference in customer drop-off. In the two step checkout process over 30% more customers made it to the payment page, and orders increased by almost 5%. On smartphones alone, however, the conversion lift was 11% — smartphone users experienced the greatest friction at the add-on stage.

Based on this improved conversion, incremental orders for 30 days is projected at over 300 with revenue of approximately £48,500. Upon seeing this significant win, the brand decided to immediately serve the new variation to all traffic.

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Luke Hardwick is a Manager of Customer Success at SiteSpect, consulting for SiteSpect users on their optimization and personalization road maps and projects. Luke is based in London and has experience as an conversion rate optimization specialist across many softwares before landing at SiteSpect.

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