Shopping Cart Life Span: How soon does your shopping cart expire for anonymous users? More than a few shopping systems use Session variables for tracking cart items, and expire within hours, especially for users behind prozies that change IP addresses often, thus rendering the current Session invalid (think AOL). Several studies point to the fact that customers will wait as long as 4 days before deciding to buy, and if the item they were looking at is still in their shopping cart, you just saved them several steps and increased the possibility of conversion substantially.
First, from the product page, the Add to Cart button should be highly visible. Next, the shopping cart should be easy to locate—usually positioned in the sidebar, or the top-right. The checkout page should be super-easy to access, and never more than one click away, allowing a visitor to bypass the shopping cart if they want. Finally, the checkout fields should be logical, and kept to a minimum.

In response, some people choose terribly cumbersome names. They find out that “Tshirt.com” is taken and then learn that “HockeyTshirt.com” is also taken. So they create an unworkable domain name like VeryCool-HockeyTshirt.com. Not only is it too long, it contains a hyphen, which should be avoided (some users forget to put them in, sending them to your competitor’s site.)


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Bailey Richert is an award-winning business coach who helps individuals launch and grow profitable online enterprises as “infopreneurs”: respected experts in their fields creating value, generating income and realizing their ideal lifestyles by sharing their life experience, knowledge and passions with others through information products and services.

Product matching: in apparel, jewelry, and other specific types of product sales websites, offering a generalized “recommended products” in the lower part of the product detail page is often not enough. Consider setting up specific matches, for example, this pair of earrings goes well with that necklace. Think of it as the editorial content of the site that customers will appreciate, because you have taken the time to not only know your product, but give them direct guidance on what goes with what. If you don’t think this applies to you, think about it and see if there is something similar you can offer for your products, as it yet another way to increase per-order averages.
In professional diving, checklists are used in the preparation of equipment for a dive, and to ensure that the diver and life support systems are fully prepared before they enter the water. To a lesser extent, checklists are used by a minority of recreational divers, and by a larger proportion of technical divers during pre-dive checks. Studies have shown checklists to be effective at reducing the number of errors and consequent incidents.
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