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burt

Guest Checkout - got one on your site ?

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I just purchased something from a well known UK site (advertise on TV all the time), and went through their "quick checkout".  This might as well be called a guest checkout which is the terminology most people use at this forum.

 

What happened at the end of the Checkout?  I was given a way to login to their site to track my order (even though there is no account details [password etc] to enable me to login.

 

-

 

I put this question out there, for those of you running an optimised checkout, where guests can buy from you...how do you;

 

1.  allow customer to track their order

2.  allow customer to login to give a review should they wish to

3.  allow customers to contact you about their order

 

and so on.  In other words, all the things that can easily be done by someone with an account, how do you allow those without an account to do it.  Maybe you have not thought about it, in which case, this post might start you thinking.

 

Bear in mind, that even though they are a guest, they could be a "cheerleader" for your business, and Google loves to have new content (such as product reviews).


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@@burt

 

Guests customers should be allowed to: 1. track their order and 2. write reviews because "G" loves the content. That's a win, win, win situation. The shop owner, guest customer and Google all get something meaning from the deal.

 

But not as much should be provided for a guest. Registered users should be allowed more capabilities to encourage signups.

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We always ask reviews in emails..


:blink:
osCommerce based shop owner with minimal design and focused on background works. When the less is more.
Email managment with tracking pixel, package managment for shipping, stock management, warehouse managment with bar code reader, parcel shops management on 3000 pickup points without local store.

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We always ask reviews in emails..

 

Good.

 

Q: how does a person without an account log in to give you the review ?


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IF YOU MAKE A POST REQUESTING HELP...please state the exact version
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Get the latest current code (community-supported responsive 2.3.4.1BS Edge) here

 

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1. They can't

2. They can't

3. Contact Us page

 

:D

 

Can you change `they can't` into `they can` ?  If not, why not ?


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Get the latest current code (community-supported responsive 2.3.4.1BS Edge) here

 

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Good.

 

Q: how does a person without an account log in to give you the review ?

We use identifiers in links to allow reviews by orders on a special reviews page. Its similar to password reset mechanism.


:blink:
osCommerce based shop owner with minimal design and focused on background works. When the less is more.
Email managment with tracking pixel, package managment for shipping, stock management, warehouse managment with bar code reader, parcel shops management on 3000 pickup points without local store.

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Can you change `they can't` into `they can` ?  If not, why not ?

 

The PWA addon deletes the customer data on checkout success. So no info left anymore.

You could skip the delete process though and keep the customer data. But then you will have to send them a reminder of some sort that they have to create a password to access their order history which again would defeat the purpose of "guest" checkout.

 

If it clearly states that checking out as guest removes the possibility to track orders or having a order history or be able to leave feedback and they still choose that option then so be it. I personally don't understand why one would choose guest checkout, the process is almost same except that you need to add a password.

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I hope this doesn't drift too far off topic but how about an option right up front in the checkout process

 

Do you want to use guest checkout?

*Note to customer, by opting this you will not be able to access your purchase records in our store.

Do you want to checkout and create and account?

*Note to customer, by creating an account you can check on your purchase status, purchase history and much more.

 

That way, right up front the customer has control, and has information to make that decision on


I am not a professional webmaster or PHP coder by background or training but I will try to help as best I can.

I remember what it was like when I first started with osC. It can be overwhelming.

However, I strongly recommend considering hiring a professional for extensive site modifications, site cleaning, etc.

There are several good pros here on osCommerce. Look around, you'll figure out who they are.

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@@altoid

guest checkout is come only from the fear of spams which is a stupid behaviour and no reason to fear by this way. But if you give your email address only without password than yes you will be spammed of course. (!)

I say only customers that if you make a registration than you wont be spammed if you check off newsletters. :)


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Email managment with tracking pixel, package managment for shipping, stock management, warehouse managment with bar code reader, parcel shops management on 3000 pickup points without local store.

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From a customer viewpoint, to be able to "recover" their activity and create a regular account at some point in the future, as well as be able to post a review or track a shipment (still as a guest), would be ideal. One way would be to supply (in the order confirmation email) a long hash-looking string to use in email subject lines and act as sort of an ID/password. Perhaps only a single use could be allowed. Another would be a string to input into a form during registration or posting a review. Again, once used, disable it.

 

You have to balance convenience for the customer against the possibility that someone will steal this ID string and use it -- how much harm can they do? Let's assume that this hacker has access to the order information (product, date, amount, address), say, with a copy of the confirmation email (no credit card information). For example, if used to sign up for a regular customer account (after guest checkout), don't ask for a new email address -- or at the least, send an email to the old address informing them that an account has been set up in their name, and wait a week before allowing a change of email address. Give them the ability to cancel such a signup if they didn't make it.

 

Things customers who checked out without an account might use a unique ID string for...

  1. sign up for a regular customer account (preserving the current order), as they plan to come back and order more (happy customer!)
  2. post a single review for the order (or one per item type?)
  3. track shipment
  4. contact the seller for questions, problems, or return
  5. ??

Is there any information you would be holding on to (with PWA) that a customer would be alarmed to see you had, if they converted to a regular customer account? Such information, especially any credit card data, would have to be disclosed when using PWA checkout.


If you are running the "official" osC 2.3.4 or 2.3.4.1 download, your installation is obsolete! Get (stable) Frozen or (unstable) Edge. See also the naming convention and the latest community-supported responsive "Edge" release

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guest checkout is come only from the fear of spams which is a stupid behaviour and no reason to fear by this way.

I say only customers that if you make a registration than you wont be spammed if you check off newsletters. :)

 

I think customers choose "guest" to minimize the amount of information they have to enter for an order, although in truth, it's probably not much more to create an account. If a customer isn't sure they'll be back to buy more in the future, they may take comfort in not leaving as much of a "paper trail" behind them (abandoned accounts, etc.). Being able to convert a guest purchase into a regular customer account, in the future, is a plus for them.

 

Don't most countries now have anti-spam laws restricting your use of email addresses? Even if not, a clear statement promising what you'll do with an address would be comforting to customers, as well as UNselecting (by default) any signup for newsletters, etc. Make them explicitly check (on) a box in order to receive mass mailings, remind them that they signed up and how to unsubscribe at the top of each newsletter, and make it easy to unsubscribe.


If you are running the "official" osC 2.3.4 or 2.3.4.1 download, your installation is obsolete! Get (stable) Frozen or (unstable) Edge. See also the naming convention and the latest community-supported responsive "Edge" release

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I use a guest checkout

 

Tracking Order / Update is taken care of by shipping company

 

Contacting me is normally by return of order email

 

Hmmm reviews that is one i want to solve. An easy way to marry up order and review request.

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Great conversation!  

 

On the site from which I purchased this morning, I ended up with a link to a page on the site and an identifier (eg:  abc-123 - of course, the actual identifier is much longer and more random).  By accessing the page with the identifier, up comes my order details

 

site.com/order/abc-123

 

Really simple and works well.  Who else would know my identifier, assuming it is not an incremental identifier and is instead written randomly.


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@@mattjt83

 

For #2 how do you marry up the customer to the product?  

Or put another way, how do you ensure that the one doing the reviewing has actually bought the product.  


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@@burt

 

I guess you are right about that. The shop has been online since 2011 and I have never once had someone leave a review without us asking them to. I guess if you were worried about spam you'd have to add in some sort of assurance that they had indeed purchased that product, maybe just use their email address?


Matt

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I agree it's not a major issue in "real life".

 

Here in the EU we have some idiotic consumer protection laws one of which is about false representation - shopowners must ensure that the one leaving the review has tried the product.  Got a fake review?  Get found out?  Trouble.


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burt,

 

My experience has been bad in both the cases I did a purchase without account. I didn't like the concept before and even less after that purchase, so I don't use it in my shop, I really don't like it as a customer nor as a shopowner. I prefer to offer a quick account creation and force customers to use it. Things goes much smoother then.

 

In those two cases I was supplied with an id as mentioned, but the order and contact information was so poor I regret I did not create an account.

 

One of the purchases was from a huge, well known taiwanese company, and their customers support was far from good when a problem arised (It took me half an hour to find a telephone or email to contact the shop customer service, two emails to fix a defective shipping address, two to get a refund from the badly shipped order and one for now for asking the VAT invoice - btw I still didn't receive it) so maybe having an account would not do things smoother...

 

 

 

 

 

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I agree it's not a major issue in "real life".

 

Here in the EU we have some idiotic consumer protection laws one of which is about false representation - shopowners must ensure that the one leaving the review has tried the product.  Got a fake review?  Get found out?  Trouble.

 

EU laws are becoming too strict and too silly to follow them all. And it's more than dissapointing the fact that big companies does not follow them at all.

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What if during checkout (and not already signed in to their account), it was basically a PWA setup with a few non-mandatory extra fields (create ID & password, unchecked newsletter signup, etc.) at the bottom? The guest could see at a glance that adding a couple extra bits of data could open a full account, and it could tell them what goodies (benefits) they'll get, including not having to go through all of this next time. I think there may be some fear that opening an account means some huge extra amount of information that has to be entered, so asking up top "do you want to create/open an account" could turn off a lot of people. If they see that it's just a small additional amount of information, they might be more inclined to do so. A clear statement that they will not be spammed (what the store will do with their email) next to the email signup could reassure nervous people. As for those who don't want to create an account right now because they're not sure they'll ever be back, put an access code in the confirmation email for their use if they ever change their mind. A prominent link to your data privacy policies (regardless of whether they're legally required or are just good practice) should be right there in the area of the account creation (just make sure the display of the policies doesn't wipe out the customer-entered fields!).

 

Is it possible to consolidate guest checkouts for a single customer (perhaps by email) if and when they decide to convert to a customer account, or would it only be possible to convert one sale to a customer account? Maybe in the registration page, present the saved information (for editing) and allow more than one order code ID from past orders. If there's a conflict anywhere in address, phone, name, etc., what should be done? Just take the latest, and flag that it has changed over time? Are there any security implications?


If you are running the "official" osC 2.3.4 or 2.3.4.1 download, your installation is obsolete! Get (stable) Frozen or (unstable) Edge. See also the naming convention and the latest community-supported responsive "Edge" release

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@@MrPhil

 

I use better checkout and when a user decides to become a member any order they have made in the past as a guest is then included in their customer area. As long as they used the same email. They can also then still checkout if they wish without logging in if they have forgotton password etc.

 

The point is they can get through checkout with/ without account remembering password or not. At the end of the process if they are not logged in they are asked if they want to become a  member and then just have to add a password. If they have made an account in the past they are reminded. But the account creation is after the sale so it doesn't get in the way.

 

The only downside and one I would like to address is how to automate ask for a review from a non member.

Would love a system where a person who has purchased from us can leave a review without membership just from a direct link in email with a token.

 

I have spent quite a lot of time watching live analytics on my site ( OCD I  know) and seeing how people approach the checkout.

 

I see quite a few who have shopped before going to password forgotton and resetting and then going through.

 

However I also see quite a large number go to password reset then change there minds and go through using the guest checkout option.

They seem to prefer to refill details rather than go through the email reset thing.

 

I don't know if i would have lost those people but I think it is interesting that many many people rely on password reset rather than remembering passwords and many even after creating an account will choose to use the guest checkout.

 

For many years I used PWA on a 2.2 site where there was no account option. I never ever ever had anyone ask to make an account and I had hundreds of return customers. 

 

I like the option of guest / member working in any configuration and then sorting out any member processes after the sale. reviews tracking etc.

 

I remember Gary had a token system for order updates some time back but I am not sure how that would combine with customer accounts reviews etc I am sure it would need significant re-coding

 

:thumbsup: Doug

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