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Finding technical issues with checkout

debugging process for a small store

10:25 am on Nov 23, 2013 (gmt 0)

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I run a small online shop

It's a wordpress/woocommerce/paypal setup.

Things are going OK conversion rate about 2.5% which I guess isn't too bad. And sales haven't dropped off significantly - people are buying.

However I have had people contact me saying that they have had troubles checking out, not s much a usability issue but more a technical issue (they can't add things to the basket/connection to paypal not working)

Everytime I try it or get people I know to test it they have no problems.

What I wanted to ask here is how people go about testing their sites for bugs? I came across a site called 'feedback army' but that seemed to be more on the usability/look and feel side of things. I am sure my site could benefit from this but my first priority is to try and find how many people can't technically buy off me and if there is anything I can do about it.

Any tools tips suggestions would be rally appreciated.

5:11 pm on Nov 23, 2013 (gmt 0)

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There is percentage of issues that will simply be out of your control. Mostly this is because nearly all shopping carts rely on cookies to work properly. If a browser is not accepting or writing cookies as it should then you'll see issues like you are having. Javascript may be disabled also which is sometimes the case.

My only suggestion is to find out what browser and version they are running and possibly investigate their User Agent string. The User Agent sometimes reveals numerous spyware and toolbars that cause issues. The boilerplate message I give visitors a lot is clear your cookies, update your browser, and if that fails try a different browser. Most of the time that resolves the issues. To be honest Woocommerce is a pretty well tested piece of software so my first thought is that is not the problem.
4:26 pm on Nov 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

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What particleman says is the truth. If your conversion rates are where you want them, I would not spend too much time trying to track down one off issue. Our sites have the occasional issue but with soooo many browser variations it is next to impossible to test against them all. Add in mobile and tablet and now it it unwieldly.
4:46 pm on Nov 26, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Thanks both. You are right there is just too much to figure out, impossible to cover all bases. I like the boilerplate suggestion, will employ that fr sure :)
10:21 am on Nov 27, 2013 (gmt 0)

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For a short time I worked in the test team for a major supermarket. Somebody just went out and bought examples of all the major smart phones and tablets and a room full of testers just ran the same scripts on all of them, as well as computers running every major browser under all the currently popular operating systems. Nothing complex but a lot of capital and manpower that would be uneconomic for most SMEs. I have no idea how many different security programs they threw into the mix.

Even then the end user is still going to find some way to screw it up.

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