• http://gugli.wordpress.com/ Anna Sebestyen

    Hello Patricia,

    I really liked your summary on reg forms, and these types of tips and tricks are most welcome! Thank you.
    Just a few fair assumptions and or questions (I am quite curious what is your stance on these aspects). I have put them into ‘7P fashion’

    visibility: some of the forms are placed below a long article, not ‘above the fold’ where visitors could immediately find where they can register. Reg forms work better in more visible sections on the page (if necessary placed on both the top and at the bottom)

    visuality: you have mentioned that it is strongly recommended to communicate the specific benefits, like giving a short sample etc. I couldn’t agree with you more. But even if you provide a summary, I think it is essential to accompany your downloadable product with some attractive and relevant image, as it can improve conversion rates. It could be just a well designed cover page for a white paper – but it feels more tangible this way. So showing your product is one thing. In addition, I presume, it is also important to place the reg form close to the picture.

    validity: placing some ‘thank you, it was truly useful blah blah blah’ etc. genuine (!) quotes from readers next to the reg form may also increase plausibility, and encourage visitors to react, and hit the submit button.

    victory: if a visitor has asked for one product (e.g. a quote for website SEO-healing), after the submit form, on the thank you page, you may call her/his attention to your other product (CPC campaign) or vice versa. It could be in an Amazon.com-fashion, e.g. those who asked for xy also downloaded our xyz. It may work for certain types of businesses I think.

    vanish or vigor: the consistent follow-up is the most convincing part of your arguments. Superb. Especially if it contains some extra info that serves as update/ addition for the downloaded product, already attracting the user. Maybe this feature could/ should be already built into the content of the downloadable material (i.e. purposefully holding back follow-ups, some charts, surveys etc.?)

    And the last bit – I do not think it affects making business in English but Hungarian is an agglutinating language – I suppose that texts on the reg form button, most importantly ‘Submit,’ works better if it is in first person singular, affirmative, and not in an imperative form (‘I’ll have it’ instead of ‘Send it to me’ ), and especially not like ‘order it from us.’ The approach may be better from the user’s point of view, or not?

    Sorry for the length of the comment. I am enthusiastic about user-friendly online marketing. :)

  • http://www.adapt.com Erica Forrette

    Thank you for a great article; it really prompted me to think about the way we treat our landing pages and what we include as far as reg fields. And I will definitely take the advice on what to test on the 3 diff. versions of the landing page. I look forward to future articles in this new SEL column!

  • http://dlperry.com DLPerry

    Excellent points. I’d like to add another, more technical one – Data Security.

    I still see a lot of usage of ‘insecure’ forms to gather personal data, or at least ‘perceived’ personal data – ie: we all know that addresses and telephone numbers are publicly available – but this information still tends to be viewed as ‘personal’ by most end-users.

    I feel that if you are going to ask for ‘perceived’ personal data such as telephone number, address, etc. – you really should do so from a secure form.

    Granted – nothing is 100% secure. However it has been my experience that when asking for ‘personal’ data – the conversions do seem to increase when this is done via an SSL secure form.

    Of course, as discussed here – to avoid the security issue entirely – just don’t ask. :)

  • http://www.1shoppingcart.com/ecommerce-blog/ MichaelV

    Great article!

    One of the most important things you can do for your business online is test & track everything… doesn’t matter if you are an SEO, or an ecommerce site owner, test and track everything!

    You will always find that the less information your prospects have to fill into a form, the better your join rate is going to be…

    But don’t let that get in the way of your sales objectives. I had to shake my head at your real-life example above Patricia:

    The final form tested was very, very simple and contained only two required fields (email address and country). The response rate sky-rocketed to 15.5%

    Possibly this company had its reasons (and the following is more important for b2c than b2b although still very relevant), but I can’t stress enough how important it is for your sales process to always require a name on your forms.

    After all, what good is a 15% response rate if your sales conversion is abysmal?

    Whether you are following up by phone, or email, being able to use a name will increase your conversions significantly.