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Magento: Give Your Visitors a More Efficient Checkout

We all know that Magento’s ecommerce platform is a great way to sell products online. However, one of the drawbacks to the base install is the checkout process. Although it features a step-by-step checkout, which user testing shows as being a positive approach, it is still lacking some features that may help convert lookers into buyers.

Magento Skip Step 1 Extension

Magento Skip Step 1 Extension

One of the best extensions you can install to make your Magento checkout process more efficient (and to potentially increase conversion rates) is the Skip Step 1 extension by Anders Rasmussen. Anders has graciously provided his superb extension for free. As the name implies, this extension will skip step 1 of the Magento checkout, which is the step that asks the user if they want to checkout as a guest or register. The goal is to make for less steps during the checkout process and to keep it as simple as possible.

Some customers may get confused when landing on the One-Page Magento checkout, thinking they’ll have to register in order to complete the purchase. By installing this extension, we eliminate any potential confusion and thrust them directly into step 2 – Billing Information.

So allow me to show you how to get it up and running. I had a heck of a time trying to get this installed via Magento Connect 2.0 running Magento version 1.5.0.1. When I attempted to install it via Magent0 connect, the extension just would not work – it didn’t show up at all. So I had to install it manually. If you can install it via Magent0 Connect – then do it. It’s much easier. But if you are having difficulty, you might have to install it manually.

Installing the Skip Step 1 Magento extension manually

First off, you’ll need to download the extension manually. To do so, I use a neat little tool located here. Just paste in the Magento Connect 1.0 extension key (magento-community/Crius_SkipStep1) and click Download. You will then see 2 links show up on the page and use one of the links to download the extension (here’s the link in case you can’t get it figured out). Unzip the contents of the file and upload it to your Magento root folder via FTP. (I won’t go in to details on how to connect via FTP as it is outside the scope of this article.)

When the upload finishes, log in to your Magento Admin and go to System > Cache Management to clear your cache. Then go to System > Configuration > Checkout (under the Sales heading on the left side menu). You should then see a heading for Skip Step 1. Click on the heading to expand it and make sure all settings are set to Enabled. Click “Save Config” to save your settings, then test your checkout process on your Magento website to make sure it is working properly. When you click “Proceed to Checkout” after adding an item to your cart, you should be met with the new step 1 – Billing Information.

Enable Skip Step 1 in Magento Admin

Enable Skip Step 1 in Magento Admin

 

Note: If you are having trouble getting this to work after unsuccessfully trying to install it via Magento Connect, you might have to FTP up to your site and delete some .xml folders that should not be there. Installing via Magento Connect added xml folders to my files rather than xml files like they should be. Just follow the folder structure from the packaged extension you downloaded and find the xml folders on your server. Then delete them and upload the extension manually. All should work fine after that!

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