Let’s be honest: designing forms isn’t the most exciting part of building a landing page. It’s no wonder most marketers would rather devote their attention to headlines, visuals, and attention-grabbing calls to action.
But, you should never forget that your forms are conversion-driving marketing elements all on their own. They need to work within your landing pages, and to make potential buyers want to take action. Otherwise, these seemingly bland pieces of the puzzle can actually work against you and defeat their own purpose.
To show why these mistakes are so easy to make – and to ensure that you get as many conversions as you can from your landing pages – here are a few things every marketer has to know about forms…
Keep Your Online Forms Short When You Can
In the same way that huge blocks of text seem like a pain in the neck to read, a long form can easily feel like a hassle to someone who just wants to get some information or move closer to a solution. That’s twice as true when your visitor is coming to you via a mobile device, like a smartphone or tablet. By keeping your forms short, you can go a long way towards encouraging visitors to actually fill them out.
Ask For the Info You Really Want and Need
Lots of marketers use forms that ask for data that would be “nice to have,” but isn’t strictly necessary. If knowing things like the size of your prospect’s company or their title within the organization won’t really help you to help them, save it for later. Requesting these pieces of information just more fields to your form, and are details that are probably better gleaned during a phone call or consultation, anyway.
Forms Should Be Tested Extensively
Occasionally, we talk with new clients who are amazed that they aren’t getting any conversions from their website. When we undergo a detailed audit, however, we find they have forms that aren’t working, or that aren’t compatible with mobile devices. The moral of the story is very clear: have your forms tested extensively so you know they work regardless of what devices or browsers your buyers are using.
Test Different Form Options and Layouts
The best way to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of your landing pages is to test different elements against one another. That doesn’t just mean trying different options for headlines and buttons; it applies to forms, too. Experiment with different options, layouts, and fields. You might be surprised at what customers actually respond to, and how little differences in the design of your form can yield big changes in your conversion ratios.