Apple Pay and Salesforce Enable Ecommerce Conversions for Mobile Holiday Shopping

Mobile holiday shopping with Salesforce and Apple Pay

As CQL’s team prepares to launch Apple Pay across fourteen global brands on Salesforce Commerce Cloud (formerly Demandware), we caught up with Chris Shaffer, a senior CQL developer and Ryan Petrick, CQL’s UX Design Director to gather some insights.

CQL: Why is Apple Pay important for ecommerce business?

Ryan: Conversions! As ecommerce designers, we are always working on ways to reduce the 25% of users who abandon carts due to complex checkouts. And the numbers are even worse on mobile where conversion rates drop by over 70%. By allowing an e-shopper to bypass the checkout forms (bill to, ship to, credit card authorizations) … abandoned carts will be reduced.

Chris: Transaction security is another important benefit to using Apple Pay, both from the stand point of the business and the consumer. Because Apple Pay depends on both your phone and either your PIN or your fingerprint, it provides the protection of two-factor authentication in a consumer-friendly way. Additionally, the consumer’s bank/credit card details are an extra step removed from the retailers.

CQL: In October of 2014 Apple’s CEO Tim Cook declared 2015 the ‘Year of Apple Pay.’ While we all knew that was optimistic; why now?

Ryan: Apple Pay’s adoption is growing because the ‘one-finger purchase’ is coming of age with wearables and handheld devices leading the way. Today, this surge is being fueled by new Mac OS Sierra and iOS allows you to unify all of your shopping on desktop, mobile and watches.

CQL: Don’t you think it’s partly because of the cool factor?

Ryan: In full disclosure, I’ve been referred to as being a ‘Mac fan-boy’ in the office… probably because I’ve been the one that waited in line for a phone or woke up at 3 am on a launch day to place an order for a watch.

But yes, it is enticing to pay with a simple fingerprint. It’s so futuristic… and it’s happening now. I even bought a pair of shoes the other day… with my watch.

Said another way, Apple Pay has made it a bit too easy to purchase things you need and possibly things you don’t need!

CQL: So we have seen Apple Pay at the cash registers around town, but now on websites? How does that work?

Ryan: With the launch of new Mac OS Sierra and iOS, shoppers have unified the way to check-out for shopping, desktop, mobile and wearable. Here is how it works:

CQL: Any tips on implementing Apple Pay on Salesforce Commerce Cloud?

Chris: For the backend integration, Salesforce’s Commerce Cloud team has done a lot to simplify the process, especially if you are already signed up with a handful of payment providers with whom the Commerce Cloud team partners (e.g. Worldpay, Adyen, and CyberSource). A very basic implementation of Apple Pay can actually be done with little to no coding in these situations – The platform/service can even inject the button itself on the cart page and handles the full flow. A more advanced implementation can be added relatively easily to include some of the missing features like server-side address and contact detail validation. 

Ryan: Our user experience team is always thinking about the number of clicks and time it takes to get through a traditional checkout. When customers move through the various steps such as: Add to cart, view cart, proceed to checkout, shipping, billing, confirm- they have a lot of time to think about that purchase.

We are designing more one-page checkouts and traditional 3-steps are going to be a thing of the past. Apple Pay is the natural progression of the simplified checkout. By adding the option for Apple Pay, users no longer have to fill-out forms or scramble in their wallet to get a credit card out. It has all that information from when you first set up Apple Pay.

When designing the experience, we want Apple Pay represented anywhere you have ‘Add to cart’ or ‘Checkout’, Product Detail Pages (PDP), Quick-views, Shopping Cart, etc.

And really keeping it foremost on mobile is critical because that is where the big problem exists. The fact that it does not currently work in Chrome, Firefox and IE makes this more of a mobile strategy right now. For those browsers, we simply ensure that users will not see the button.

One item to note is that Apple’s 2016 guidelines are pretty new and you will actually find that the Apple Store does not completely comply with them yet. 

CQL: Conclusion

As we let Chris and Ryan get back to their 70 global sites before the holiday code-freeze, we wanted you to consider a few trends:

  • The 2015 holiday season showed mobile shopping bigger than ever, with 45% increase in mobile traffic and 82% increase in conversions. We can expect that the 2016 holiday season will continue this trend.
  • With retailers seeing $18 billion in shopping cart abandonment, it’s easy to see why any smart strategy to conversions, security and mobile is worth the investment.

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