The Customer Effect

‘It’s the unifying login layer for commerce’: Bolt’s new SSO product eliminates the need for guest checkout in online shopping

  • SSO Commerce by Bolt enables smooth checkout for shoppers and higher conversion for retailers.
  • Consumers can open a store account and save their payment credentials in a single click at checkout.
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‘It’s the unifying login layer for commerce’: Bolt’s new SSO product eliminates the need for guest checkout in online shopping

Bolt is a checkout platform that aims to make online shopping quick, safe and hassle-free. The company recently launched SSO Commerce, a one-click checkout experience that helps retail brands to engage directly with their customers. When shoppers are about to make an online purchase, SSO Commerce allows them to check out in a single click while simultaneously creating a store account for them on the retailer’s website.

“Bolt SSO Commerce is the unifying login layer for commerce. Our proprietary technology unites retailer store accounts and Bolt accounts, creating a single digital identity for each shopper,” said Maju Kuruvilla, CTO at Bolt. The solution combines the benefits of a store account, such as the ability to track orders and earn loyalty points, with the convenience of a one-click checkout experience across hundreds of retailers in the Bolt network.

Users can log in using a one-time password, which ensures greater security and also eliminates the need to remember usernames, enter passwords, or type in billing addresses over and over. “So far, Bolt has fixed checkout by offering a one-click checkout experience for our network of shoppers and independent retailers. Now, with SSO Commerce, we are fixing login as well,” said Kuruvilla.

Shoppers on a site using Bolt are presented with a variety of payment options at checkout. They can pay using any major card brand or select from a range of alternative payment methods. Bolt has direct integrations with PayPal, Affirm, Afterpay, Amazon Pay, Apple Pay, and Klarna that retailers can choose to offer within checkout. A shopper’s preferred payment method is saved so that the next time they check out, they don’t need to enter any payment information.

From a retailer’s perspective, SSO Commerce turns guest shoppers into loyal, repeat customers. “Retailers can treat new customers with Bolt accounts who have never shopped at their site before like return customers,” said Kuruvilla. With the convenience of single-click checkout and easy store account creation, Bolt claims brands using SSO Commerce have experienced a 25% average increase in store account registrations. Retailers are also able to offer more personalized shopping experiences to their customers by using the insights and feedback from shoppers on the Bolt network.

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One of the leading global brands to take advantage of Bolt SSO Commerce is New York-based fashion label Badgley Mischka. “The purchase funnel gets smaller and smaller as customers navigate from browsing, to adding to cart, to checking out. Removing any barriers to that process helps drive conversion,” said Katie Ouaknine, owner at Badgley Mischka Web. “Creating a seamless process to capture account creation while not hindering conversion is ideal, and we believe Bolt SSO Commerce will provide us that perfect balance.”

Ouaknine believes that SSO Commerce will also enable Badgley Mischka to gain a deeper understanding of its customers’ needs and to engage with them more directly. “Having guest shoppers no longer shopping as guests, we can now share all the wonderful perks of shopping directly on our branded site as opposed to buying our products from major retail chains,” said Ouaknine. “We can also share exclusive content and really treat our customers to a better side of our brand.”

Bolt’s one-click approach is helping to fill a void in the e-commerce landscape, according to retail expert Nicole Leinbach Reyhle, the founder of Retail Minded, an industry blog and publication focused on independent retailers and small businesses.  

“Welcoming customers to create accounts with merchants has historically been presented with challenges, and no other technology has aimed to directly combat login hurdles until now,” said Reyhle. “With Bolt’s new offering, brands and retailers have the opportunity to drive conversion, capture more customer data and connect to their audience in a more secure fashion. I don’t see any other competitor accomplishing this with the same ease and security that Bolt delivers to retailers and customers alike.” 

SSO Commerce will enable much higher checkout conversion for shoppers and merchants, according to Ben Prawdzik, founder of fintech startup Wage. “Fundamentally, consumers like doing things that are easy. If a consumer remembers a checkout experience as being easy, they will have a subconscious affinity for that retailer and go back to shop again,” said Prawdzik. “Other checkout platforms require shoppers to re-enter the same information every time they make a purchase, which can be incredibly irritating. Bolt, on the other hand, is one-and-done.”

With U.S. e-commerce having grown by 44% in 2020, now is the perfect time to introduce the SSO Commerce checkout solution, according to Rick Hoskins, founder of e-commerce business Filter King. “I’m relieved that finally a new system has been built to eliminate anonymous and guest checkout. It’s the natural next step in e-commerce, and Bolt are the pioneers,” said Hoskins.

“I believe their innovation is leading a new online shopping trend. The likes of Apple Pay and Google Pay are too divided. It’s like asking, ‘Are you an Apple or Android person?’ With Bolt SSO, you don’t need to sign up to one side of the competition, as it will serve all users, stores and brands.” 

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