Bad form design is a more common problem than anyone wants to admit. Here are the top 7 mistakes you should avoid.
Bad form design can really kill the conversion rate for lead generation forms and landing pages. Often, you know what the right thing to do is, but you can’t convince the other team members! Well, here’s the data you need to win them over – by showing them how their form choices will affect their conversion rate.
Unbounce also found that any use of a dropdown lowered all rates to 15% – regardless of how many form fields there were. In other words, a nice, efficient three-field form would lose nearly half its conversions if one of them is a dropdown.
For a frictionless sign-up alternative, consider using an identity service such as LinkedIn’s “Sign In with LinkedIn”. It’s one click for your user, and you get incredibly rich profile info. Formstack found that using social media auto-fill from Facebook or “Sign up with Google” increased conversion rates by 189%.
If you’ve had any prior contact with the user, use that to pre-fill any form fields you can. All the major marketing automation tools can provide this feature – Hubspot, Marketo, Pardot, and Eloqua being the ones we see most often among our clients.
Another good approach is to add autocomplete form tags to your form fields. This prompts your user’s web browser to fill in the right fields. No external integrations or APIs required. Talk to your user experience engineer about this.
Mistake #5: Not matching your form design to the customer journey
Sales teams – the lifeblood of any B2B business – need useful information about their potential customers. So often, marketers feel pressure to over-deliver, and build forms with a dozen fields!
Top of funnel: These visitors are in discovery mode. You should ask for enough information to begin nurturing them, and no more. Having a name and email field is sufficient.
Middle of funnel: Buyers who are in the consideration and validation stage of their journey need more information. At this stage, you are offering high-value content and can reasonably expect the buyer to tell you more about themselves. Adding questions about their company size and industry are reasonable.
Bottom of funnel: When a buyer enters the purchasing stage, they’re willing to tell you a lot more. Now, at last, you can go crazy: Full name, business email, phone number, world region or zip code… go for broke.
Instapage has a ton of useful advice on making your forms match the customer journey. Go check it out.
Mistake #6: Your submit button says “Submit”
If your form’s submit button says “Submit”, “Buy”, or “Download”, you’re missing an opportunity.
Use targeted words or phrases relevant to what you are asking the user to do. Instead of “Sign up”, how about “Get my free 30-day trial” or “Get the free industry report” or “Request My Free Consultation”. These kinds of phrases lower user anxiety and build trust on an subconscious level.
Doing a task well is more than just avoiding mistakes, of course. But don’t repeat the same mistakes others have already made. The great thing about being human is that we can learn from other people’s experiences.