How to Optimize Your Forms for Quality Leads

If you’re smart about your inbound marketing strategy, then you have spent a lot of your marketing resources on creating a user-friendly website that provides visitors with high quality content.

images-11If your content is good enough, and you include effective calls to action at the end of your content, then you have a good chance at capturing your leads. Once readers click on your call to action, they will be brought to a landing page where they will have to fill out a form in order to supply you with their personal information, such as their names and email addresses.

The filling out of these forms represents the capture of your leads. However, there is definitely a science to creating the perfect form. A poor form can result in visitors leaving your landing page, or even worse, leaving your website altogether. The following are a few tips to help you create a form that will convert your visitors instead of scaring them off.

How the Form is Displayed

The form needs to be simple and easy to read. This means avoiding crazy graphics that clutter the landing page. The form should also appear above the fold of the page, meaning that visitors don’t have to scroll down in order to reach it. They should be able to fill it out as soon as the landing page loads.

The Right Length

This is easier said than done. A short form that only asks a few basic questions, such as what the visitor’s name and email is, may have a better chance of being filled out than a form that has dozens of different questions on it. Most people feel uncomfortable giving away too much personal information, not to mention don’t want to spend the time doing it. However, the more information you can get, the stronger your leads will be. This means that you may want to ask for a little bit more than just name and email. For example, age and gender can be incredibly helpful when marketing to your leads.

Include a Privacy Policy

Have a link to your company’s privacy policy near the location on the form where you ask for the email address. Visitors are always a little skeptical about providing personal information online, a privacy policy is a great way to ensure that they can trust you to keep their information private and not share it with other companies.

Add Trust Elements

The more trust elements you have, the more official and trustworthy you will appear to visitors. Some of the trust elements to consider adding include a download count, a registrant count, customer testimonials, a share count, security badges, and major media mentions.

Avoid Adding Links

The only link on your form should be to your privacy policy. Don’t add any other links, even if it’s to your own site. Why? Because the last thing you want is for your visitors to click that link and leave your landing page without filling out the form. Even if they are just going to another page on your site, they may forget about the form and you’ll be taking steps backward.

Providing Strong Incentives

Visitors need to feel like they are getting something of value for their information, so be sure to give it to them. Offering a downloadable coupon isn’t going to convince anyone to provide you with their personal information. However, an eCourse, a white paper, an eBook, a newsletter, a webinar or a consultation to name a few, are a few popular ways to entice visitors to fill out your form.

Quality Headline

You should have a headline for your landing page that immediately attracts the visitor’s attention. It should explain explain the solution to the visitor’s problem. For example, if you are offering an eBook full of recipes to help you lose weight, then your landing page headline should read something like “50 Recipes that will help you lose weight.”

Optimizing for Multiple Browsers

You’d be surprised at how many companies don’t check to make sure their landing pages load properly on various browsers. Make sure that your form not only loads properly in each major browser, but that it can be filled out and submitted correctly as well.

Getting your website visitors to your landing page isn’t the last step of the conversion process – it’s getting them to actually fill out your forms. These tips will help provide you with the best chances of converting people who have come to your landing page.

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