More than 60% of B2B marketers say they struggle to generate high-quality leads from their website and landing pages. That’s a big worry when these “marketers” can’t do the only thing these expensive websites, pages and marketing campaigns are designed to do.

One obvious problem marketers keep coming across is form design. Most of them are ugly, uninspiring and generally quite painful to use – which poses a bit of a problem when they stand between users and just about every conversion on your site.

No matter how good your ad campaigns and landing pages are, crappy forms will kill your conversion rates.

#1: Hide hero forms behind your CTA button

When your landing page has a CTA in the hero section (ie: above the fold), hide your forms behind your CTA button. Don’t slap users in the face with a form as soon as the page loads. Let your call to action copy do the talking and concentrate on maximising those CTA clicks.

 

#2: Shorter forms aren’t always better

The general consensus on form length is that shorter forms convert more – but this isn’t always the case. Here are a couple of guidelines to keep in mind:

  • Use short forms for quick, secondary conversions
  • Don’t be afraid of longer forms for your primary conversions

The truth is sometimes people expect to fill out longer forms. For example, when they’re applying for a loan, creating an account or signing up to a paid version of a software product.

Generally speaking, the bigger the reward the more effort people are willing to put in.

#3: Get a dedicated form analytics tool

Formisimo is an industry leading form analytics tool

Sure, you can do form analytics with Google Analytics but it doesn’t quite go far enough. With a dedicated form analytics tool, you can get in-depth data on how your forms are performing.

You’ll get info on how many users start filling out your forms, how many of those fail to finish and which fields cause them problems – plus a bunch of other useful data. Without a dedicated tool, you form optimisation efforts are nothing more than guesswork.

#4: Get rid of the unnecessary

Rather than simply creating the shortest forms you possibly can, get rid of anything unnecessary. What counts as unnecessary? Any field that asks for information that you don’t need for marketing purposes and users don’t need to provide you for a better experience.

When your form analytics tool reveals a field is causing problems, you need to ask how important it is. Is it worth getting conversions without this information? If not, you might be better off settling for fewer, higher quality leads.

#5: Go easy on the validation

Form validation is there to do two things: protect your site from attacks and help users complete your forms the first time around. The protection side of things should take place on the back end, out of user sight. However, the front-end validation that helps them complete your forms will appear in-browser.

Just remember this second type of validation is there to help users complete your form, not make it more difficult. Don’t be too strict with your validation or you could end up causing more problems than you’re fixing.

#6: Don’t use CAPTCHAs

One form of “validation” that really needs to disappear is CAPTCHAs. Forcing users to fill out these horrible things because you can’t be bothered to put the most basic form validation code in place is pretty criminal. Aside from adding extra work to filling out your forms, CAPTCHAs are notoriously difficult to complete first time around.

Lead generation forms are pretty useless unless they actually generate leads. The biggest mistake most marketers make is simply not paying enough attention to them. From the design process and all the way through form optimisation, working to improve the performance of your web forms is vital to maximising conversion rates – so put the extra effort in.