I've been working on an e-commerce website, and the stakeholders want to add the following text: 'free shipping if payment by debit card'. Where should I display this on the website?

I think the most relevant place is the second page of the checkout process which is the payment page. Do you have any other ideas?


  • 2
    Where are delivery fees displayed on the website? I assume before they get to the payment page.
    – Matt Obee
    Feb 20, 2013 at 17:30

3 Answers 3


Free shipping is known to be one of the most effective marketing tools e-commerce sites have.

Shipping fees can affect the number of items a customer purchases, and they can decrease how frequently a customer makes purchases from the site:

With fees, shoppers will make fewer shopping trips and purchase more goods at a time -- not unlike shoppers who drive great distances to a particular store, Bell says, and decide they had better stock up while they're there. Alternately, fees can prompt consumers to simply walk away. A survey from 2004 found that shipping and handling costs triggered 52% of the abandonment of online shopping carts, Bell says.

Studies have shown that while many customers will "browse" your products, a very small number will actually place them in the cart. If you do not put the free shipping option on the pages that are being browsed, then you are only showing one of your most compelling sales motivators to as little as 19% of your visitors:

In another study for a major department store retail chain it was determined that there are two main reasons for cart abandonment: (1) Customers cannot find what they are looking for, or (2) they do not care for the shipping options. Our study found that 56% of all shoppers browsed for products, but only 19% placed an item in their cart. The most cited reason for this first level of abandonment was, “I can’t find what I’m looking for.” Of this 19% only 7% of shoppers completed their transaction. The most cited reason for this second level of abandonment was, “the shipping costs and options were unacceptable.”

As such, I would not treat it as a transactional element but as an enticement to get the user to commit to a "buy" decision.

The best place to put this information is directly next to the item's price. If you don't then the user is not given a very compelling reason to reach a "buy" decision, and will therefore never see that free shipping is available.

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  • 1
    This is a good answer, but to augment: you'll probably also want to remind people when they're choosing a payment method.
    – Sam Blake
    Feb 20, 2013 at 18:24

Where you show the delivery fees shouldn't change based on your payment method, and any incentive should be shown at the same time as the delivery fees.

You should show the delivery fees as soon as you have enough information to calculate them, which would usually be after you have a shipping address. You should generally try to keep related information together, and so I would suggest something like:

Delivery charge: $14.50 (or free when using a debit card)

As a side note, you may run into issues with your payment processor when doing this. Many agreements with Visa or Mastercard requires that you not offer any discount to people not using credit cards or disadvantage credit card using customers in any way.

I'm not saying this is the case, just something for you to check up on.


If you have a catalog page, a simple sign added at the side of the product name helps, and/or in the product detail. Or display a big box pointing that.

For example see this product page in a ecommerce site:

enter image description here

  • For the ones wondering RM = Malaysian Ringgit.
    – Knu
    Feb 22, 2013 at 0:55

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