Top 10 Shopify Stores | Who’s Got the Best Checkout UX?

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July 07, 2022

2020 has seen eCommerce brands evolve years in mere months due to the ‘Isolation Economy’  – the result of our world’s effort to contain a global health-crisis. Physical retailers had to adapt, with many rethinking their business models (or even worse, closing) as more shoppers move online. Suddenly an eCommerce site went from ‘nice to have’ to business critical almost overnight.

Platforms stepped up; Magento, BigCommerce, and Shopify – naming but a few – all rallied to launch care packages, helping retailers get online as soon as possible. It became a legitimate movement (we even did our bit).

Which got us thinking about all those new Checkouts going live

HiConversion recently launched a checkout analytics app on Shopify, and as part of our ongoing research into the market, we wanted to see how already established brands setup their Checkouts (and are they, well, any good?)

In order to help give merchants a place to start in improving their own checkouts, we looked at the top Shopify stores and assessed their checkout and cart experiences. We based our ‘teardowns’ on the 5 most important checkout KPIs: Cart Abandonment, Checkout Engagement, Checkout Conversion, Accelerated Checkout, and Mobile Abandonment Gap.

In this article, we’ll share our findings and give each checkout a rating out of five based on these metrics. Hopefully, this quick analysis will give you an idea of what sets these shopping experiences apart from the rest of the pack, and get you thinking about how you can make improvements.

We tested checkout UX on the top 10 Shopify stores, taken from the list at ‘Top 500 Most Successful Shopify Stores‘:

  • Al Rugaib Furniture
  • ColorPop Cosmetics
  • Fashion Nova
  • JB Hi-Fi
  • Gymshark
  • Cettire
  • USAtuan
  • Bee Inspired Clothing
  • Pura Vida Bracelets
  • Kith

Alrugaib Furniture 

Interestingly, Alguraib Furniture uses a cart icon on each product listing instead of the more common “Add to Cart” button. After clicking the icon, I did not receive any sort of confirmation or change in the page. It was only after I refreshed the page that the cart icon in the top right corner indicated that I had added an item.

Checkout Rating: 🛒 🛒 🛒 3/5 

While Alguraib Furniture has some designs that are certainly worth testing, I was surprised their initial checkout pages didn’t offer many accelerated payment options (PayPal, Apple Pay, Shop Pay etc.)

ColourPop Cosmetics 

This is the leading Shopify cosmetics merchant and their shopping experience places high in most if not all of our key metrics. ColourPop offers secure checkout (which has been shown to be critically important for shoppers), express payments with PayPal, and popups on mobile useful for reducing cart abandonment. 

Checkout Rating: 🛒 🛒 🛒 🛒 🛒 5/5 

ColourPop sets the standard for a high-selling storefront on Shopify. Their high rating suggests regular testing, optimization, and adaptation to changing customer preferences. 

Fashion Nova 

An Instagram shopping staple, Fashion Nova also impressed us with their clever checkout strategies. They have a clear focus on accelerating checkout, particularly with their high demand reservation notice and multitude of express payments. 

Checkout Rating: 🛒 🛒 🛒 🛒 4/5 

Fashion Nova has strong offerings on both desktop and mobile, although heavy use of popups may be contributing to cart abandonment. It’s surely worth a test as results could go both ways. 

JB Hi-Fi 

This Australian electronics site provides much of the standard Shopify store features, such as cart summary and coupon code apply, although it has some design choices that could be losing the store revenue. An example is the lack of a secure checkout button in the summary, which might decrease customer trust in the store upon first glance.

Checkout Rating: 🛒 🛒 2/5 

JB Hi-Fi has a good foundation in place but would likely see RPV improvement if they implemented a more robust checkout strategy. Also, the overall design of the site may seem dated compared to others in the same space which may turn off a significant number of visitors. 

Gymshark 

Another big player in the social media commerce scene, Gymsharkemphasizes being conscious of current events in their checkout with a COVID-19 notice. While this may negatively affect successful checkouts in the short term, they likely build trust with shoppers that could translate into increased sales in the future.

Checkout Rating: 🛒 🛒 🛒 🛒 4/5 

Gymshark has a clean, engaging design on both mobile and desktop (I’d even say it’s best on mobile). Their visual of the ‘1-5 customer path’ also could be a contributor to high checkout success rates. 

Cettire

Similarly, to what we saw with Fashion Nova, Cettire uses a “Only One Size – Low Stock” alert that may boost checkout acceleration. The mobile experience, however, may be a bit too simplistic for most visitors to navigate successfully.

Checkout Rating: 🛒 🛒 🛒 3/5 

Cettire’s score falls in the middle – they do some things right but may be playing it a bit too safe to unlock any significant revenue increase. I’d recommend experimenting with more digital payment availability as a starting point. 

USA Tuan  

This store may not be the most user-friendly for all visitors, but where USA Tuan does shine is checkout engagement. Immediately after adding an item to the cart, a popup summary is shown. While this may increase conversion rate, I could see AOV taking a hit.

Checkout Rating: 🛒🛒 2/5  

USA Tuan could definitely benefit from having richer descriptions on their product detail pages (visitors would likely buy more if they knew more about what they were buying). High engagement, however, could lead into betterment of other checkout metrics that have produced big gains for other brands. 

Bee Inspired Clothing 

Making buying easy has consistently worked well for merchants when aiming to boost RPV, and Bee Inspired Clothing clearly has this as a goal. Visitors are greeted with the popup below, assuring them that many payment options are available in addition to other accommodations.

Checkout Rating: 🛒 🛒 🛒 🛒 4/5 

This brand knows what concerns their customers the most and making them feel secure right at the start of their experience is sure to keep them coming back. 

Pura Vida Bracelets 

Pura Vida also provides incentives upon a visitor landing on their site, with a dash of creativity. A progress bar, additional related items, and even more incentives jam-packs their checkout with AOV and conversion-boosting possibilities.

Checkout Rating: 🛒 🛒 🛒 🛒 🛒 5/5 

With colorful, unique designs and a powerful checkout, it was difficult to not give Pura Vida bracelets our top rating. This is a great example of a site that uses every tool available to maximizes its potential. 

Kith 

One of the designs that immediately stands out on Kith’s product detail page is the price within the Add to Cart button. It’s another opportunity to test an element that to many might not matter much, but could potentially yield some interesting findings when it comes to checkout engagement.

Checkout Rating: 🛒 🛒 🛒 3/5 

Other than the price/add to cart button, much of the rest of Kith’s site is standard Shopify fare. We’d recommend playing around with a popup on the initial landing or even right after adding an item to the cart. 

The Verdict: Best Shopify Checkout 

This wasn’t meant to be a deep dive into the science of checkout optimization, but rather a general overview of what we see most often in top-selling online brands.  

As for the best checkout on this list, it was a tossup between Fashion Nova, Pura Vida Bracelets, and Gymshark. 

Gymshark’s crisp UX (especially on mobile) and adaptability to recent events earn it a top spot, but the sheer effectiveness of Fashion Nova after initiating the checkout is tough to ignore.  

Obviously, some aspects of this analysis were a bit tougher to judge, such as cart abandonment, which we’ll have to explore further in a future deep dive. 

If you’re new to checkout optimization, we hope this walkthrough gave you a sense of what the best Shopify stores incorporate into their UX strategy (and what they avoid). 

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