Is confirmation of products and shipping details still relevant, or it simply adds information load to buyers. Especially when we think of mobile experiences.

I know that we use them to prevent errors, but can't we use something like this (just show the cart, then ask details, but always showing the price):

mockup

download bmml source – Wireframes created with Balsamiq Mockups

If we have added a confirmation we would have 4 steps instead of 3, and a screen with many information.

So my core questions are:

  • Do users really double check their information before purchasing?
  • Is there any case study or research on that topic?
  • What is your approach on this?
  • 1
    For the example workflow, calling the button on the second screen "Next" is misleading. It should be "Buy" (or similar) instead. (This might even be legally required, e.g., in Germany). – unor May 29 '15 at 13:44
  • @unor thanks thanks for letting me know. Fixing it right now. – gpelelis May 29 '15 at 15:01

I think you need to see Uber app from a UX engineer's point of view. Make purchasing simple, clear, intuitive and elegant. I will be happy to give my users an option to cancel the order if they feel that they had purchased something wrong instead of putting an extra page for confirmation.

Think it this way when you purchase an item you have an intent to do so. What you can do is put a button to go back to the cart in case user needs to make changes to the purchased items.

  • "I will be happy to give my users an option to cancel the order if they feel that they had purchased something wrong instead of putting an extra page for confirmation" - It matters at what point in time the user realizes that they made a mistake in the order. For example if the order is already shipped canceling it may be non-profitable to one or both parties. – Balaji Natarajan May 27 '15 at 18:20
  • @BalajiNatarajan Yes you are right but then you will have to do a little math. You will have to understand when you loose more, by annoying a user with one extra page every time he makes a purchase or by cancelling the order which will be very less frequent. Also in such a case the app might offer to afford losses. – Krishna May 27 '15 at 18:28
  • For Uber I would as a user want the extra check - then if the order is wrong then it is my fault for checking - if I don't get the check then it is the system's fault as they did not do as I asked – Mark May 27 '15 at 19:57
  • @Krishna User would still lose time (may not money) with an incorrect order. This realization of mistake might happen only after receiving the wrong product so it's not a bad idea to show it one final time before purchase. Amazon does it and it's very useful. – Balaji Natarajan May 27 '15 at 20:54
  • 1
    @gpelelis you only look at the list of items in the first step whereas confirmation page shows list of items, shipping speed, payment info, discount etc because all these happens after the first step. In the screenshot posted by OP, step 2 -> fill details is where all the other things happen. Although change blindness could be a possibility, you can change the ordering/layouts to make it clear enough for the user to review & checkout – Balaji Natarajan May 27 '15 at 21:25

Okay, I don't have user research to back me up but ihave 20 years of user experience to help give insight.

  1. I don't think you need the price on the fill details screen - its not needed.
  2. I do think people double check before purchasing ONLY if the price is over a certain amount (like over 20$)or they are committing to flying somewhere on a certain date.
  3. Booking a flight is a common one for having a check info screen but placing a bid on ebay for only 5$ I dont htink you need a confirm is also a good one to look at.
  4. My approach would be to assess how fast the user wants to complete the transaction vs how much the money means to them. Some people are fine will spending without confirming.
  • I really appreciate your insights. So as a generic rule we could say that based on the value of money for our buyers, we should decide whether to include the confirmation dialog or not. Also I am curious to know more about what you mentioned on 1, why you believe is not needed? – gpelelis May 27 '15 at 21:10
  • I'd vote for consistency. If a site shows me a confirmation screen for $50 purchace, I expect to see a confirmation next time, even if it's only $5. So I think you can skip the confirmation only if the vast majority of transactions are small enough. – Dmitry Grigoryev May 29 '15 at 9:25

If your website is WCAG 2 AA, then you need to be concerned with guideline 3.3.4 Error Prevention (Legal, Financial, Data)

This requires one of the following to be true:

  • Reversible: Submissions are reversible.

  • Checked: Data entered by the user is checked for input errors and the user is provided an opportunity to correct them.

  • Confirmed: A mechanism is available for reviewing, confirming, and correcting information before finalizing the submission.

Two of the techniques they suggest are

This depends on various factors such as

  • Variety of products (ex: Shoes, Shirts, Perfumes etc.,)
  • Product specification (ex: size, color etc.,)
  • Discounts (if Promo code entered, indicate reduced price)
  • Shipping speed
  • Payment Info

If your checkout process handles just one entity and is straightforward, then it makes sense to skip the confirmation page. Ex: Adding value to your smarttrip card, buying an ebook.

If your checkout involves more than one factor mentioned above then it is worthwhile to show the confirmation page. Amazon is one such example where you typically add items of different varieties with multiple quantities, sizes etc., 'Place Order' page shows the summary of all items, shipping speed, payment info one last time before you push the button.

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