However, there’s no point in having forms on your website if they don’t operate effectively, aren’t updated or kept an eye on, and generally cause more problems than they’re worth. It’s vital to know how to best design and utilize forms today.
Set a Specific Purpose for Each Form
Before you create a form for your website, you need to know the specific reason why you’re doing so. Don’t just create one because people have suggested you do so. Instead, understand your goals for each form and create separate ones as needed. You might have a Contact Us form, one for feedback, signing up to your newsletter, requesting a quote or media information, creating an account, or registering for an event or contest, among other things.
Things won’t work as effectively if you only put up a single form and have people respond to it for numerous reasons, as this situation will likely confuse them. You’ll find it hard to know how to best pass on and respond to or action the data, too. Get clear on the purpose of each form so you can think about this when you design them.
Also, make it evident to consumers what the reason behind each form is. People need to understand precisely what the form is for and why they should complete it. If they don’t, they’ll say no to filling it out, or they’ll fill out the form but perhaps get confused about what to expect in return and get disappointed or frustrated as a result. These are all adverse outcomes you can avoid.
Set Up Easy to Read and Concise Forms
For forms to work well for your business, they need to be easy to read and use for respondents. Choose a clear font in a decent size that people won’t have to squint to read. Always utilize simple headers to break forms down into more manageable sections and stop them from looking too cluttered. Leave some white space on the form for this purpose, too, rather than jamming fields too close together.
Be as concise as possible with the things you ask people to fill in. Keep it down to the bare minimum. While you might have other data you’d like to know for your business purposes, always put consumers first and only ask them to address the aspects of a topic that are a necessity.
Make instructions straightforward, too, so people don’t get confused by your forms. After all, there’s nothing more frustrating than attempting to submit them only to keep getting an error message for no discernable reason.
Another way you can help people when it comes to completing forms is to incorporate smart defaults. This helps reduce cognitive load for respondents because it means they don’t have to type in answers to every single question. For instance, you might set up default answers based on what most people will choose as a response and have an option for those who need to select something different.
Also, pre-populated fields save significant time and boost form completion conversion rates since it’s so much quicker for people to finish up and lodge a form. Pre-populated answers might come from their accounts settings on your website or from Google Chrome or other saved or file caching formats.
Choose the Right Location
Another tip is to place each form in the best location possible. Incorporate these fields in the most commonsense places, so you don’t make people have to search for the right forms. For example, put a Contact Us form on the contact page, and a newsletter signup form as part of a pop-up when people first arrive at your website and you want to encourage them to take advantage of a subscriber offer.
Following the above steps will help you get the most out of all the forms on your website and develop better relationships with shoppers. Don’t forget to keep testing forms to check they’re working correctly, too, and update them over time if required.