A study performed on UK customers by Experian found that consumers on average will abandon transactions when identity checks take 7 minutes or longer to complete, although there is variation across verticals. This underscores the importance of organizations being able to present and perform these checks within an acceptable time frame or standard for their industry.
Identity checks might be in everyone’s best interest, but 45 percent of survey respondents backed out of at least one online transaction due to the length and complexity of the identity checks. Of this group, nearly half took their business to a competitor. Extended waiting times give consumers the opportunity to re-evaluate whether a purchase is necessary, and to look up products elsewhere to find a better price, or a quicker check-out process.
Many forms of identity checks are used in the CNP channel, including Knowledge Based Assessments (KBAs or Out-of-wallet checks), phone verification, identity document verification, and more. The time to complete these checks can vary depending on how they are implemented and how difficult they are for the consumer to complete.
Organizations need to ensure they are able to perform identity authentication and verification checks for risk and compliance reasons, but they also need to be mindful of how long these checks will take the consumer. Many vendors focus on providing a seamless and relatively quick user experience, and utilize modern technology such as mobile devices to quickly capture images of documents, or deliver a phone verification code through SMS.
When it comes to online retailers, consumers are only willing to wait five minutes before giving up on the transaction. UK residents are prepared to spend seven minutes on identity verification checks when they visit a government site or perform some form of public service transaction, but for other types of services such as online gambling, the tolerance falls to four minutes.
The industries where consumers have the highest tolerance for identity checks and lengthy transactions include travel and financial services sectors. Consumers are willing to spend 10 minutes completing mortgage or loan applications, and when it comes to travel purchases they are willing to spend up to nine minutes completing identity verification checks.
Regardless of what types of identity checks are in place, an organization needs to ensure consumers can complete these checks within a time frame that is consistent with competitors and others in their vertical market. Depending on the types of goods or services an organization offers online, there are different expectations and standards in terms of what types of identity checks are used and how long the process can take.
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