February 25th, 2009 | 2 MIN READ

4 Tips for Order Tracking Usability

Written by author_profile_images Linda Bustos

Linda is an ecommerce industry analyst and consultant specializing in conversion optimization and digital transformation.

Comic credit: xkcd Web Comic

1. Remind customers on the order confirmation (thank you) page to check their inbox (and junk folders) for the following:

a. An invoice for the purchase.
b. An email explaining how to track an order. (May be included on the invoice, if so, please make that clear to the customer).
c. Notification when the product ships and if the order is delayed for any reason.

Be very clear in your subject lines what each email is about. Example:

a. "Invoice for Get Elastic Order #xyzxyzxyz"
b. "How to Track Your GetElastic Order"
c. "Your Get Elastic Order #xyzxyzxyz Has Shipped"

Ask to be added to the recipient's email safe list and include instructions on how to do so.

2. Put your Order Tracking link in the top navigation menu. Not only is this a conventional placement (most people will expect the link at the top and look there first), but you eliminate the need to scour your home page looking for the buried link. Order Tracking is also a customer service value proposition -- so show it off to all your visitors.

Don't hide your order tracking page behind "Help" or "Customer Service" links.

3. On the Order Tracking page, show where to find the order tracking number (like Evogear):

Evogear also re-states the estimated shipping time, and provides an 866 number if the customer has questions.

Please allow 1 to 2 business days for your order to ship.
If you see no results and it has been more than 3 business days since you placed your order, please give us a call at 866.386.1590, and our customer service team will gladly assist you.

Even easier for customers, allow them to track orders by providing just a phone number like Coleman:

4. For telephone orders, provide tracking instructions by email. Have CSRs (customer service representatives) remind customers they will receive an email with tracking number (if required) and link to Order Tracking page.

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