The not so Amazing e-ticket Online Ordering Experience

16 November 2008

The other side of the e-ticket is the ordering experience. This one wasn’t especially smooth.
Mostly, because I am presented with information I don’t need to know about, and essential information about the process is missing.

Some problems: When I have to make an extra account for the payment (which is ok I guess, but not really necessary), I have to do this at the paylogic website. There’s no reason for this. Just let me make an account at the Bimhuis site. I don’t need to know who your payment service provider is, or to be presented with their branding. Just talk directly to me, Bimhuis, I trust you already, otherwise I wouldn’t be ordering.
Now I am not being redirected to the paylogic site, instead it is loaded in an inline frame. Which generates another problem: the space on the Bimhuis site is too small for the registration form, and I am presented with scrollbars. The cramped feeling here doesn’t feel good when I’m paying something. My trustmeter is going down.

The most important problem though is how the final payment is handled. I just ordered my ticket, and I’m ready to pay for it. Since I chose iDeal, I’m waiting to be redirected to my bank’s website. Waiting for something. To happen. But nothing happens.
So I go directly to the paylogic website with my login. There’s my order! Can I pay it here? No. I have to do it from the ordering process. But in the orginal window, there’s no link I can click. Just a static page telling me I’m paying through Paylogic, for the Bimhuis, and the payment is handled by Docdata Payment. This is way more information than I need to know, and no simple link to complete the process.

I guess this is an issue with Safari’s pop-up blocker, which I turn off to order second ticket (hoping the first one magically goes away, since I cannot remove it). And indeed: the second time, the window seems to reload itself from the inline frame, and redirects to the website for my bank. Yep, this sure looks like a hack. But it works, I can pay for my ticket.

How easy would it have been to just include a link for me too complete my process, or a message stating pop-up blockers get in the way of the ordering process? You do test the site against different browsers and operating systems, no?