The 5 most effective ways to increase your form conversion rate

By Timo HillmannAug 17, 20213 min read

Increase your form conversion rate with these five tricks

Every website has one - web forms are everywhere and millions of people use them every day. Forms play a key role and establish a connection between your website and its visitors. From newsletter signups and job applications to the well-established contact form, web forms serve many different applications in almost every interaction your visitors have with your website.

But what do you do if your website visitors don't pay attention to the nice form you added to your website? Studies have shown that the average contact form just has a conversion rate of 1%. Spending time to build a web form can be frustrating when your form conversion rate is low - the entire goal of any form is to gather submissions, after all. So why are your visitors not filling out your forms?

While there is no simple answer to fix low form conversion rates, we will look at 5 tips and best practices that you can use to improve your own form conversion rate.

1. Keep it simple

Let's face it, people are lazy, and this includes your website visitors. So, do you need to ask for a street address? Or for that phone number? Research shows that reducing the number of fields improves the conversion rate and, thus, increases form submissions. Choose the right amount of form fields for your use case.

For example, when designing a newsletter signup form, you should only collect a first name and email address. And you may not even need the first name. On the other hand, when creating a lead generation form, fewer fields can also decrease the quality of leads.

This also applies to optional fields - if you don't absolutely need the information, just don't add the form field. And if you do need the information, make the field mandatory.

2. Remove friction

Keeping with the previous tip's theme, submitting the form should be as frictionless as possible. While captchas are efficient at filtering spam, studies have shown, they can hurt your forms' conversion rates. When captchas are on, you could lose out on about 3% of total conversions!

That doesn't mean you have to sacrifice your security, though. Modern captcha solutions (e.g., reCAPTCHA v3) protect your website and forms without interrupting your users and affecting conversion rates.

Reducing friction also means making the form easier to fill out. Again, users are lazy, and they don't want to type the same information multiple times. Help them out by auto-filling the fields that your visitors filled out before or try to predict their answers.

You can achieve this by making use of the "autofill" attribute:

  <label for="first-name">First name</label>
  <input type="text" id="first-name" autocomplete="given-name" />
  <label for="email">Email</label>
  <input type="email" id="email" autocomplete="email" />
  <input type="submit" value="Subscribe now!" />

3. Make your CTA stand out

Using the word "submit" on all your call-to-actions (CTAs) doesn't inspire your website visitors to convert. It also doesn't let them know what happens next. Treat this as an opportunity to convince your users to fill out your form and hit submit.

Try some of these examples instead for your CTA:

  • Subscribe now
  • Request a call
  • Start your free trial
  • Download this ebook

The color of your call-to-action matters, too. Certain colors statistically perform better, e.g., the color red is the highest performing color. The key here is to choose a color that fits your design and brand but also stands out enough amongst all the other buttons on your website.

4. Location matters

Most users spent 80% of their time above the fold. This means that the location of your form can heavily influence its conversion rate. Make sure that your conversion form is positioned in an obvious place - for most forms, this should be above the fold. Putting a web form at the bottom of your page will mean that most visitors will likely never see it, let alone interact with it.

5. Add social proof

Humans are pack animals - we need to feel a sense of belonging, and we look at what others are doing or have done in the past to learn what is correct. Our decisions are influenced by the choices, opinions, and actions of the people around us.

This is what we call social proof, and it is a shortcut for us to decide how to act. It is also one of the best ways you can improve your conversion rate. For example, 70% of people will trust a recommendation from someone they don't even know.

There are several elements of social proof that you can incorporate:

  • The number of registrations, signups, etc.
  • Media mentions
  • Customer recommendations and logos
  • Social share count

A/B test your improvements

As we've seen, there are a lot of areas to look out for when tackling conversion rate optimization. Arguably the most important thing you can do to improve your form conversion rate is to A/B test or split test your changes. Testing any improvements will give you confidence that you are on the right path and remove any conjecture about what works and what doesn't.

For example, A/B testing is extremely useful to find the best performing CTA copy and color for your website.

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