As an ecommerce merchant, your goal is to sell as many products as you can and keep your customers happy and coming back for more, right? Today’s consumers are all about instant gratification and easy processes. When you lead a customer down a long and complicated path from browsing your store to completing a purchase, there are many stops along the way where you risk losing them. A buy button, on the other hand, takes them directly to a checkout page and let’s them make the purchase on a whim.
Buy buttons - also known as buy now buttons - are used to sell items or services and can also be used to collect donations or sign up for memberships or subscriptions. The buttons can always be customized to match your brand and can be placed anywhere - a website, social media, in an email, etc.
Read on for all you need to know about buy buttons and what they can do to enhance and grow your online business.
What Does a “Buy Now” or “Buy Button” Do?
In technical terms, a buy now button is a simple button you put on your website or anywhere else you communicate with customers. The purpose of the button is to get them to go straight to making a purchase, letting you collect payment quickly. The button leads them to one of three places:
- Product Page - this is a good option if you’re selling a new product and you want to provide additional information (including social proof) that customers might want to see before they buy.
- Cart - this is a good option if you want to encourage additional purchases. Perhaps the customer has already put other items in the cart and hadn’t yet purchased them - they can now add this new item and buy everything at once.
- Checkout page - this option is the most direct route to the sale and leverages the opportunity to catch someone making a split second decision. It also works well for flash sales or other situations in which you want to present a sense of urgency. Of course, this also speaks to the no-fuss consumers who know they want the product and just want to make the purchase and move on with their day.
In addition to taking consumers directly to a sales point, this simple buy button offers so much more to your business, including:
- Developing trust - your customers will start to recognize your familiar buy button wherever they are on the web. They will know that they aren’t setting themselves up to be scammed, but rather are about to purchase from a known provider. Also, all customers love when their lives are made easier, which is ultimately what the buy button does - it simplifies the process and allows for a purchase within just a click or two.
- Flexibility - you can have as many buy buttons as you want, each one customized for a particular purpose. This is especially relevant for merchants who offer subscriptions or other things requiring ongoing payments. You can offer a “buy now” button and a “subscribe now” button, one referring to a one-off purchase and the other to an ongoing subscription.
- Cross-Selling - once a customer commits to one purchase, you can immediately offer another related item or service using another buy now button.
Using a buy now button encourages consumers to make a quick decision and purchase the item rather than risk missing out. In many cases, merchants will see an increase in conversion rates when using a buy now button. And, of course, when set up correctly, you can track the activity and see exactly how many people are clicking on the buy button and how many of those clicks are turning into actual sales.
Types of “Buy Buttons” That Work
You have the freedom to use whatever text you want on your buy buttons. You want the text to make it very clear to your customer what will happen when they click on that button. Sometimes it can be tempting to go clever or cute, but you run the risk of the majority of browsers not actually getting the subtle joke you are making and clicking away from your site altogether. It’s better to be safe and just stick to clarity when it comes to the text on the buttons:
There is nothing more clear than a button that says “buy now” - making it obvious that clicking on this button will take you straight to a checkout page (of if your info is already stored in the site it might be even simpler and automatically charge your card immediately, like Amazon’s one-click button).
This is a good text for a button that will lead to confirming a recurring payment for a subscription or membership service.
Perhaps you are selling a printable or an ebook. This button text makes it clear that clicking it will result in receipt of the item to the buyer’s computer or mobile device.
Order Now / Shop Now
These button texts make sense to use if the customer will be directed to a checkout page or a page where they may see other items to purchase as well.
Not all buy now buttons have to lead to the purchase of an item or service. It could also be used to direct people to sign up for a (paid or free) newsletter or other information feed.
Where Can You Use a Buy Button?
A buy button can be installed pretty much anywhere where you are communicating with potential customers. Here are some examples of places you can drop a buy now button:
Especially when creating posts that are specifically meant to draw attention to a particular product or launch something new, it’s a good idea to include a buy button. That way, as soon as someone sees this new “must-have” item, all they have to do is click and purchase.
Perhaps you have a website but one that isn’t yet set up as an online store. Rather than create a whole store, especially if you are not sure if your business will take off, you can add a buy button to test the interest in your product(s).
Third Party Cross-Selling Websites
Look for marketplaces or other websites that provide a platform for sellers to market their wares. In these cases, you will be given a virtual shop window where you can display your products and include a buy now button that gives customers the opportunity to purchase.
As your business grows and you have a solid email list, you should definitely consider adding buy buttons to some of your emails. If you’ve got a new product coming out, for example, what better way than to let your email subscribers get first dibs on purchasing it?
Best Practices for Buy Buttons
The ways you can use a buy now button are pretty much endless, but there are some tried and true methods that work better than others. Following are some best practices that you can put into place when using buy buttons to help increase your sales:
- Prominent placement - make sure you put the buy button in an easily visible location on the page/social media post/email or wherever you are putting it. On a product page, for example, try putting the button near the top so that minimal scrolling is required.
- Make it easy - the purpose of the buy now button is exactly that, to let the customer make the purchase now and not go through a lot of additional steps to get there. If a new customer clicks buy now, do not make them create an account in order to complete the purchase, for example. Make the whole process as easy and in as few steps as possible.
- Don’t neglect design - the buy now button must be eye-catching - don’t let your customers scroll right by it! Consider the color, the text and the size when designing your buy buttons. It should match the rest of your brand, but still stand out. If you have a contrasting color as part of your palette, the buy button is a great place to use it.
- Use the data - make sure your buy button is equipped to collect data that you can then analyze and use to inform your business decisions. You’ll want to be able to track customer behavior and see how many people are converting to paying customers. If the numbers are low, you can test different color and text combinations on the buy button to see what works better.
Advantages of a Buy Now Button
Buy now buttons are good for merchants and customers alike. Here are the top benefits to be gained from using buy buttons:
- Increased sales - this is the most obvious benefit and the most important. A well-optimized and well-placed buy button will bring in a steady stream of new buyers from whatever platform they choose to use. The more payment method options you offer, the more you will also encourage sales.
- Fast checkout - customers love a quick checkout process and happy customers are returning customers, adding up to more profit for merchants.
- No account creation - this one is less of a benefit for the merchant (because account creation is a good way for you to collect contact details), but key for many would-be buyers who don’t want to create an account in order to make a one-time purchase. And, if you make the process so easy, chances are they will come back to your site next time they are in need of what you sell.
- Better user experience - letting customers complete a purchase directly from your social media or any other website immediately upgrades their user experience, giving them that instant gratification they love so much.