Easily Created High Converting Forms For Landing Pages
It never ceases to amaze me how so many internet marketers seem to over look the importance of their landing page forms in determining the conversation rate on their landing pages. Your lead generation efforts can often live or die based on the form you have placed on your landing page.
Some typical examples I see everyday include extra fields that really don’t need to be in the form to forms that seem to never end to forms that have the standard ‘submit’ button. Usually it’s because of a lack of understanding of the principles of landing page optimization or because the organization’s internal culture does not encourage an atmosphere of innovation and so Jane in Marketing will put up a standard form, almost the same as her paper forms because that is what the company has dictated as the approved.
Clearly this approach has no real appreciation for conversion optimization or the unique way in which online behavior differs to traditional print media.
Okay enough of the lecture, if you want to create kick ass forms that convert, here’s my top suggestions for landing page forms.
1. Test Different Columns
Something as simple as changing your form from a 1 column to 2 column can significantly impact on your conversion rate, I have known some clients to report double, even triple digit growth with this one technique alone. Why? Because it can bring a long or poorly position form above the fold and make it appear shorter and easier to fill and so conversion goes up.
2. Test Number of Fields
In landing page design, long copy has been known to outperform short copy. Yet when it comes to forms, shorter forms tend to outperform longer forms in terms of conversion. You have to exercise caution however as generally speaking the shorter the form, the less qualified the lead. However you can always monitor your leads and if quality falls, you can introduce a few more fields.
In the past when I needed to build a mailing list quickly without worrying too much about email quality and user engagement, I would only use single opt in and only include an email address field and a submit button on my form. For some newsletters it was okay but with others where I needed engagement I would introduce a name field and use double opt in to improve the quality of my list.
3. Keep What You Need, Scrap The Rest
You need to be brutal here, to maximize your conversation rate only ask for what you need, in my above example if it’s a simple mailing list, just ask for their email address. If you want to personalize your emails then ask for the name on sign up or ask for it later on, after they have signed up. The principle here is that the more you ask the more you increase the anxiety of the respondent.
4. Use a Stepped Approach
If you simply can’t avoid asking a lot of questions or if it is essential that your form has to have 10 or more fields then try breaking your question into smaller chunks and spreading them out over a number of steps, like in a wizard form.
Again be wary here, you will inevitable lose people in each and every step. For example at step 1 you will have 80%, at step 2 60% and by step 3, well you get the idea. Test your wizard to find the optimum number of steps with the essential questions you must ask.
So that’s my top tips for order forms. Keep it lightweight and relevant and watch your conversion rate take off.