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Create User Friendly forms, Create forms that convert

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Creating User Friendly Web Forms
Mar 27 2016

    Web Forms stand in the way of business conversions. Allow me to explain. A user might want to buy a product, or sign up for a magazine, or maybe just contact us. The only thing standing in their way is a form. Building a user friendly form can help a conversion but we often don’t pay much importance to this important aspect of website. You don’t know how many possible business conversions are lost because an interested visitor didn’t complete the form. In short the most important aspect behind designing intelligent forms should be that people can easily and quickly fill up the form and get going. This post will help you do just that.

     

    Why Form Design Matters

    People generally don’t like filling forms.  Forms are the most important and fundamental foundation of ecommerce sites, social interactions and many online applications. It won’t be wrong if say that forms clearly stand in between user needs and business goals. Let us for a moment compare ecommerce stores with the physical stores we love shopping from. In a physical store you touch and feel what you want to purchase. Once you have selected the products you wish to purchase, all you need to do is reach the POS or payment counter. Thereon it’s a wonderful experience. A nice clerk greets you, processes your payment and packs them the items in a bag. Compare it with online ecommerce stores. Everything is good until you reach the checkout. Instead of a cheerful clerk you have a long form to fill.

     

    Principles behind designing Forms that Convert

    1. Keep it as simple and easy as possible. Ensure that the form is placed correctly and does not have more than required fields. Think from the point of view of the user.
    2. Help people fill in the form by providing a path for completion. You can achieve this by using a polite or friendly tone, or highlighting a specific field of the form and turning it off once it has been filled up.
    3. Imagine how the form will be used. A web form on a Real Estate or Expensive Jewelry website should be very different from a form on regular ecommerce store. Again keep the user in mind.
    4. A form should communicate with the user and understand the possible shortcomings or misunderstanding a user might face. Ensure the form achieves this in a polite but not intrusive manner. If you are asking for some very personal information you can use a small question mark, to describe a brief reason for asking the same. Always ensure that the form filling process should be simple and quick.

     

    Helpful Guidelines for Building User Friendly forms

    Choosing a Name for your Form: Keep users informed about the form they are about to fill up. You can do this by mentioning an appropriate name on the form and clarifying what they will achieve by filling it. A good form title will be helpful for both the purposes.

    Start pages for lengthy forms: Helpful start pages can be a great help for users where there is significant time investment or specific information (which is not expected to be handy) required while filling the form. For example, in case of online surveys or bank account opening forms.

    Clear Scan lines: Clear scan lines are small lines that allow people to take in all the information they need to review quickly. A properly designed scan line will have right visual spacing and colors to increase completion rates.

    Minimal Distractions: Remove any possible elements of distraction. Elements that are not directly related to the form should be removed. This will ensure that users stay on the form and remove possible paths to abandonment.

    Progress Indicators: In very long forms spreading across multiple pages, it is useful to have a progress indicator. A progress indicator will help users to envision the complete scope of the form, indicate the current page or position of the user and provide a way to save the status and return back to the form.

    Tabbing: Utilize the Tab key function on keyboard to allow user to move from one input field to other. Also it’s a good idea to highlight the active input field.

     

    HammockWeb – Top Web Designing Company

    If you want to build a website that has high conversion rate then you ought to work with a top web designing company that thoughtfully creates each and every aspect of your website. We are a web design agency in Los Angeles, that provides high quality web designing services.

    Looking for a web design company in Los Angeles, do contact us.


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    Web Design That Generates Leads

    Unless they’re coming in from one of your amazing blog posts (you do have a blog, right?), your home page will be the first impression your future client or customer gets of you. It may be the only time they ever look at your business. You don’t want them to run screaming off into the distance. You want them to, you know, stick around and eventually maybe even buy your stuff or hire you. Here are some tips from a leading web design agency in Los Angeles, for designing a home page that generates leads. 

    Make It Professional

    The first step to designing a home page that generates leads is to make sure it looks professional. I’m sure you already know that you don’t want a website that looks like it’s designed by a kindergartener (although these days…)

    This isn’t the 90s. Slapping fifty different colors down on a black background with three JavaScript popups is a thing of the past. But you also can’t just stick your text into the basic WordPress theme and call it a day.

    You want a site that looks reputable. And that might cost some money. You should at least spend a bit for the pro version of a theme.

    Before you spend some bucks, though, do some research. Who are your competitors? Better yet, which of your competitors seem to be doing good business. What does their website look like? What do other professional sites in your field look like?

    Take some notes. Make some sketches. Yes, I know. It’s like school, but it’ll pay off in the end. You don’t want other people getting your business, just because your website looks sketchy.

    Now look at your notes. Can you make your website with a WordPress theme? Great! Go ahead!

    Need a fancier website. Find WordPress intimidating? Hire a web development firm. You’ll thank yourself later.

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    •        Leave some white space

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    •        Don’t do almost anything that looks like it walked out of the 90s

    Tell Them What You Do and How It’ll Help Them

    This may seem like a no-brainer, but when you're designing a home page, you should definitely make sure your potential customers or clients know what you do or what you sell. I don’t just mean something vague like “web designer.” Be specific, because your future customers are looking for specifics. Let them know you’re a web designer specializing in e-commerce sites or a ranch that sells, specifically, organic free-range dinosaurs.

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    In order to design a home page that generates leads, you have to actually prompt people to do something that will add them to your list potential clients. Now, it may take a bit to reel in a new client. Or they may be ready to work with you right this moment. Either way, your home page should direct the visitor to do, well, something. And, for the eager visitor, it should do it before that visitor ever scrolls down. This should be your primary call-to-action, which means it should be something like “Get a Free Quote” or “Buy This Thing and Save 20%” or “Fill Out This Form and Get This Free Thing.”

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    This will get a bit more complicated, but if you can you should personalize your CTAs. Hubspot says that personalized CTAs work 42% better than just plain old unpersonalized CTAs.

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    Provide Social Proof

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    This is called social proof. Dr. Robert Cialdini did a study (see a write-up of it) where he encouraged people to reuse towels in a hotel. Cialdini found that more people reused towels if told that other people also reused towels than reused towels if told that reusing towels would mean the hotel would donate money to help the environment. In other words, social proof was an even more powerful motivator than altruism.

    Where do you get testimonials? Well, from your clients and customers. It’s not rude to ask. If people like your work, I’ve found they’ll be eager to give you a bit of help.

    Put Your Address and Telephone Number

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    Keep Your Home Page Your Home Page

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    Make Sure Your Website is Responsive

    Your whole website should be responsive, but pay special attention to how your home page design looks on mobile phones. Is the call-to-action still one of the first things your visitor sees. Is it still obvious what you do? Is the text large and readable? Can a visitor still fill out any forms, even if they’re on a phone?

    Basically, if you give your business card to someone and then they look up your website on their smartphone, will they be impressed or confused?

    Your home page is important. It's not just something you throw up because you're supposed to have a main page! It's not just a welcome mat. It is, in a way, your front window into the world. And, with a little thought, a home page can be designed so that it generates leads and brings you more business

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    A website that makes a visitor feel like it was designed just for them, does wonders in retaining those users and making them come back for more. Navigation, text, media and graphics are the primary factors which should be kept in mind while designing a website.

    Understanding how visitors browse through sites is important to determine the dos and don’ts of web development. Here, we are listing some tips that will improve your website’s user experience and navigation.

    Information is Important

    Imagine this: You visit a website which is attractive in design, but it doesn’t give you the information you need, or is overshadowed by the visuals. Will you stay on the website?

    Although design is a great factor in attracting visitors, it is not usually the design a user is looking for. A website that focuses on the design more than the information tends to be overwhelming to the visitor, leading to the user abandoning the webpage and searching for another source.

    A web development company should bear in mind to keep the design simple and uncluttered. Integrate designs and images in your website which will help the user easily determine what the site is about and where to look for certain information. If the design hinders the user in acquiring information, get rid of it and replace it with a design that aids the user in finding out what they want in a hassle-free manner.

    Be Responsive

    The saying “content is like water” is the basis of responsive web designs. Designing a website that is responsive means that content can be viewed easily in all devices—laptops, mobiles, tablets, you name it. Getting a responsive design for your website ensures that your visitors are not annoyed if they have to constantly zoom in to read the content while using a smartphone.

    Since 80% of internet users utilize mobile devices, it is important for a website designing company to understand that websites should accommodate mobile and smartphone users or be left behind in the competitive race of web development.

    Furthermore, Google has changed its algorithm and now ranks your website on the basis of how mobile-friendly it is. So if businesses want to improve the ranking of their websites, going mobile is a great option.

    Cut Down on the Page Load Time

    Whether you are standing in a queue, or hanging around for the lunch you ordered to arrive, waiting is frustrating. Waiting for a webpage to load is a similar experience and since, in this case, a user has the choice to leave the page entirely, this is commonly the option people opt for when a page takes too long to load. According to Radware, a two second delay in website’s loading time resulted in abandonment rates as high as 87%.

    Moreover, with a high page load time, businesses suffer more today than they did a few years back. In 2010, if a page took six seconds to load, it suffered a conversion hit of -40%. Today, the same time will take a hit of -50%. Users expect a sleek and friendly webpage where they don’t have to wait too long and it is up to the web development company to provide them that.

    You can use GT Metrix, Website Grader, and Google’s PageSpeed Insights to analyze your site’s speed and make fixes wherever required. Enabling browser caching and compression and optimizing images will minimize your page load time to a great extent.

    Be Visually Responsible

    Images are a great way to tell a story without words. Successful websites make the use of images on their home pages to tell the visitor what the business is about and what the visitor will get out of it. Too much of a good thing, however, is dangerous.

    As we’ve mentioned above, images hog a lot of bandwidth, which results in a high page load time for a website. To counter that, images should be scaled down or compressed so that bandwidth remains free and visitors to your website can enjoy a great website-user experience.

    Another thing to keep in mind, while designing a website, is that images should not be stock photos. Instead, use images of your own. Remember, the purpose of a website is to brand your image, and it won’t be possible if you are not using images of your own company/products.

    The Navigation Bar is Your Friend

    So, now that you have a responsive website with a simple, elegant design and have taken measures to reduce the page load time, you have ensured that a user will visit your website without hassle. The next step is to plan to make the visitor stay on your site, and here’s where the navigation bar comes into play.

    Navigation bar is a guide to your website, and if the guide is not helpful, the visitor will not be engaged and will promptly leave. According to a research by Forrester, if the first visit to a website is negative, 40% of the visitors will not return.

    When you are hiring a website development company to design a corporate website, discuss your content with them and the design for the navigation bar. Design director Daniel Alves comments that the navigation bar is “the most important design element on a website.”

    In order to create an interactive navigation bar, keep the design simple and easy-to-read. Since people read in a left-to-right pattern, it is advised to keep your products and services on the left of the bar and the “actions” on the right.

    Sharing is Caring

    Social sharing is the new boom. Integration of social media sharing buttons gives you the opportunity to make your visitors your advertisers. The more the people share your web pages on social networks, the more your exposure is increased. So embrace the practice of social media sharing and watch as the traffic on your website multiplies!

     

    Bottom line: Keep the user’s perspective in mind. If there is anything that annoys you while browsing sites, chances are that they will annoy other users, too, so it is best to employ those methods which help the user find exactly what they are looking for on your site without getting lost or overwhelmed by your website navigation. A user-friendly website will entice new visitors and turn them into regulars.