We have explored the possibility of making the phone number a required component of the checkout form, but we found that it had a very negative impact on conversion. Basically, we found that folks weren't completing checkout because they didn't want to give out their phone number, which is understandable. People are often concerned about their privacy.
However, we do have a doc that shows you how to manipulate your checkout.css.liquid template to make it appear that phone numbers are required:
Let me know what you think!
Instead of stating it just "phone number", maybe have it displayed as shipping phone number" so it doesn't seem as invasive and customers clearly know what the number is for.
If customers leave it blank, we have to manually email the customer to ask for it, since couriers other than USPS will require a shipping phone number. If customers don't want to leave their number, they're smart enough to not input their real numbers anyways (e.g. 000-000-0000).
Nearly every other e-commerce site (Amazon, Best Buy,etc.) require a phone number in order to process orders, I would imagine it to be the standard now.
I hope you guys can re-consider. Thanks.
Though we don't really have any concrete plans to make the phone number required, either as an option or as a general requirement, you can definitely change the text of the phone number field.
That's something that you can definitely do with a checkout translation -- check out this article for more info:
Basically, you'll have to find the "Phone" field and to say "Shipping Phone Number". You can even make it more obvious that you'll require this number by changing the text to "Required Phone Number" or something similar, so that your customers know that they must enter their phone number on checkout.
Let me know what you think!
In terms of finding something that "works" for Harper, what do you think about an implementation along the lines of a custom form field on the cart page that asks for a shipping phone number and makes use of something like the jQuery validation plugin?
Not perfect, but it'll allow him to associate a shipping phone number with each order - though he'll have to look in the order notes for each order in to find them.
That's a great idea, but would require some significant custom coding to the cart.liquid field which is why I was shying away from that idea, as many folks (including myself) aren't savvy enough to push that into the cart.liquid template, and would typically require help from someone who is to get it working.
Also, because that would extend Shopify's functionality above and beyond its intended usage, it's not something I can encourage as, well, it falls outside of my ability to support. ;)
With that fair warning said, you can probably reach out to a freelance site like Tweaky or a Shopify Expert to have this kind of thing built, Harper.
...to see if this can be built in your case.
Talk to you you all again soon!
I could probably help you get this implemented if you have time for some back-and-forth and are willing to dig into your code templates.
Let me know if interested.
I'm confused about this sentence in the Shopify Resources link you offered:
"Using a shipping carrier that requires phone numbers will automatically make this field required in the checkout. No configuration necessary!"
How can Shopify know a phone is required when a carrier isn't selected until the next page? I tested this by leaving the phone field blank, created a UPS order, and did not get any warning.
"Though we don't really have any concrete plans to make the phone number required, either as an option or as a general requirement, you can definitely change the text of the phone number field."
With all respect, I think this is a significant mistake. For those who are concerned about any effect this may have on their conversion rates, they can simply leave it turned off.
For the rest of us, or certainly for myself, mandatory phone numbers mean far less intrusive direct contact with the customer, an easier method of weeding out fradulent orders, and fewer packages gone missing, returned to sender, or customer complaints of packages sitting at the depot .
Seems to me that for something as significant as this, giving an option is always the best option.