We are building an E-commerce website for a client that only sells one product (with different size). The customer can buy multiple quantity and different size every time.

Now, we're having a discussion on whether if we should:

A) Put the product add to cart button on the check out page so the customer will have a seamless checkout

Quick mockup of the wireframe

B) Or back to the traditional way, where we put the add to cart on the product description page. The checkout page will only consist of the overview of your cart, addresses, and payment details

I personally think option B is the way to go because in option A user doesn't get the full visual and descriptive details of the product on the checkout page. And I also think the checkout flow is weird when you can add to cart and edit the cart at the same page.

But other team members think option A will increase conversation way since everything is on one page.

My question is, if anyone have any experience/suggestion on which flow has the advantages when doing a single product e-commerce checkout?

  • How does the user get to these pages in the first place? If doing A, does the user come from a product description page first? What about in the B scenario? Commented Oct 16, 2015 at 5:02
  • @KevinBorders Good question. For A, the user can get access to this page from the product description page and also from the menu say a "Buy Now" button. For B, it will be more of a traditional approach, so the user will be able to add to cart in the product description page, then click Cart on the menu to land on this checkout page with only the overview of the cart, account, payment details..etc..
    – jcyin
    Commented Oct 16, 2015 at 9:34

2 Answers 2


Reasons for not getting rid of the cart:

  • The cart often gets perceived as a "saving items for a later purchase" feature.
  • it is a metaphor for real life purchase: First you put it in the cart, then go to the cashier, then buy it. This is a useful mechanic for non-tech-savy to understand what's happening.

The argument "everything is on one page" is a hard one: A one-step-checkout (which you did not build - yours is a "one-step-cart-and-checkout-product-page") always brings the danger of information overload and massively collaborates with what users EXPECT to happen on a product page. So even if you think your feature is great, expectations will work against you.

Then, as well, for marketing you will run into different problems: How to create mailings for cart abandonment? Which page will you redirect to? Where will you show the current amount of items "on the cart"? How does the user navigate to the list of items he selected two days before?

I think the consequences are broader than the benefits.

  • Thanks, well descriptive point of view to the issue. Agreed that this is more like a "one-step-cart-and-checkout-product-page" then a one step checkout page. To me the most unnatural user flow is putting the cart and checkout in one page, which is confusing. Because "checkout" should be as simple as possible to just checkout, but we added an extra step for people to add products to the same page!
    – jcyin
    Commented Oct 21, 2015 at 8:22

While A has the add-to-cart and the cart information on the same page, you still have to arrive at that page via a product description page. So, it is still a two-step process like B.

The design of B actually exposes more of the workflow (selecting quantity and hitting add to cart) on the first page the user sees instead of the second page. So, if you are judging only based on how early the user sees the workflow, then B is actually better. However, there are always other considerations (such as following conventions to provide familiarity) and it depends on your exact website. The only way to know for sure is to A/B test it.

  • Agreed that to get the best comparison result is to A/B test. But user on A can also get to the cart page through the menu as well, so is actually one step shorter. But if you think about the user pattern, a user wouldn't directly to go the cart page to add product, most likely he/she would want to see the product itself first before adding the product to the cart. I believe it is more stimulating to have the add to cart button on the product description page, rather then going to another page and do it. Then you'll sort of lose the interest without all the supportive elements.
    – jcyin
    Commented Oct 21, 2015 at 8:27

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