I wanted to get your opinion or find out if there is any evidence around using a minimal header (logo and secure checkout icon) and footer on basket page which essentially reduces checkout abandonment.

For example... Basket (Minimal header/footer) > Checkout (Minimal header/footer) > Receipt (Global header/footer)

From some competitor analysis I have found 10/10 basket pages in the UK continue to use a global header and footer which gives users another opportunity to continue shopping. It's only when the user progresses from their basket to the checkout process where you'd find a minimal header and footer.

For example... Basket (Global header) > Checkout (Minimal header) > Receipt (Global header)

I'd greatly appreciate your help.

KR Greg


The header/footer navigation is removed during checkout, in order to prevent users from going to other pages and, thus breaking the checkout process. When users click on a secondary link and leave the checkout process the conversion rate is going to drop because not all users will comeback to finish the checkout.

I've found 3 studies of removing the navigation but they are performed on a landing pages that collect leads. Landing pages and checkout pages are similar because they both have a goal of making the user enter its email, personal info and financial information. Therefore, the results have some validity and can be trusted.

Here they are:

  • Thank Kristiyan I'm fully aware of A/B testing and header/footer navigation best practices within a checkout flow. However my question is more specifically related to the basket page and the grey area around using a minimal header and footer on this page. – Greg Smith Feb 7 '17 at 9:42
  • I believe you cannot compare the examples of testing the conversion of landing pages (the examples you provided) to checkout pages simply because when the subject is paying something, it gets more complex that can't be compared with a process of just dropping an email. – Joao Carvalho Feb 7 '17 at 9:44
  • @JoaoCarvalho They're similar because they both have a similar goal. It is true that entering financial data is more complex, therefore the conversion rate would be lower. However, we are measuring the abandonment rate due to click of navigational link. Entering financial data makes the process longer, thus removing the navigation link should have a stronger effect. – Kristiyan Lukanov Feb 7 '17 at 12:41

I will base myself on personal experience: Amazon tries to eliminate any process to go back during checkout process (FYI: don't know if the process is the same on all country stores). But will I think like: "Ok, I can't go back so I will need to add my credit card to exist this process"? No. I would just hit the browser's Back button.

Getting the user to force something (specially when the subject is paying for something) without alternative is definitely not one of the most honest experience to provide.

Check topic 5 here: https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2009/05/12-tips-for-designing-an-excellent-checkout-process/

Still, if you need to get more data/answers about this, do a A/B test and see which one converts better.

  • 1
    Thanks Joao Amazon's rigged checkout (or 'Trump-esque' approach to migration) becomes annoying when you're trying to go back, which makes it extremely difficult to abandon. I'd like to think I'm an advocate for honest experiences, which is why I'm leaning towards keeping the global header and footer on the basket page so users can continue to shop. Logically it makes sense to reduce navigation within the checkout and still have the function to edit or change your basket via a back button etc. I'll be able to gather evidence during the user testing and drop in some case scenarios. – Greg Smith Feb 7 '17 at 10:19

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