How to Create Web Forms that Convert Visitors to Leads


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This post is a guest contribution from the team at RankPay, a digital marketing platform that helps small and midsized business owners achieve greater SEO results.

Funneling lots of traffic to your website is an impressive feat, but it’s an empty metric unless it can convert visitors into subscribers or customers. That’s exactly why having effective forms is essential—these data capture tools allow you to gather information on leads that you can in turn nurture into clients and customers.

However, forms can be off-putting to website visitors and potential respondents for various reasons. It can be challenging to grab both interest and attention from potential leads, customers, and clients.

Fortunately, there are a few ways that you can improve your underperforming forms in order to attract more leads and grow your lead generation campaigns. Read on to learn how.

Make improvements to design

One of the initial elements that an incoming prospect may notice about a website is its overall appearance. While looks can be deceiving, it’s true that aesthetics can play a significant role in enticing website visitors to interact with your website. So, if your aesthetic appearance doesn’t appeal to your audience, you may risk losing high-converting leads and prospects.

While design can be somewhat subjective, that doesn’t mean you should completely ignore user experience or design. Here are a few tips that you can use to improve design quickly and efficiently.

1. Use drag-and-drop form builders

One great way to create high converting forms is through customizable form builders. These tools and platforms are fairly easy to use, and they provide you with the added bonus of crafting your content personally for your users.

Another bonus: You don’t need design knowledge to create beautiful forms using drag and drop builders like FormAssembly. All web forms are mobile responsive, so they seamlessly adjust to the visitor’s screen size.

More importantly, you can leverage advanced features like conditional logic, calculated fields, and more through FormAssembly. This ensures that you can create attractive and functional forms that suit your needs.

2. Limit the number of fields

Another design factor that’s crucial to consider involves the actual form elements. Always stick to the adage “less is more” when it comes to form building. In particular, it’s good practice to limit the number of required fields that users must fill out on your forms.

For lead generation purposes, the email field is an excellent example where you can simplify the process. This field, along with a name field, should be all that’s required for a potential lead to submit contact information or secure a download. The more fields that you require, the more you risk losing that potential prospect.

Adding more fields typically requires extra effort from people, which can potentially turn leads away. So, for simplicity’s sake, it’s best to stick to the basics. If you’re a FormAssembly user, you can even leverage prefilled data to take away one more step in the process.

Web form simplicity is also backed up by research. In fact, a recent study performed by Unbounce concluded that when an 11-field form was reduced to just 4 fields, the organization experienced a 160% lift in form completions.

3. Use radio buttons instead of text fields

To expand on the point above, you can also limit the number of choices that visitors can input in a form using radio buttons.

Using radio buttons allows users to choose the button showing their answer instead of typing it or selecting it from a drop-down menu. This ends up making forms much more straightforward for users, thus encouraging them not only to complete the form, but also to fill it out faster.

According to a CXL study, using radio buttons instead of multi-selection drop-down boxes provide a 95% faster form completion rate. The speed at which someone can submit a new form offers serious benefits when it comes to data capture and analysis.

Optimize your web form’s copy

Once you have a user’s attention with your visual form design and layout, it’s also important to address the text found throughout the form. Word choice and tone can influence a user positively or negatively, ultimately determining whether a respondent moves to the submission stage.

Copy is another incredibly important component to turning leads into customers, and it can have a positive impact on lead generation. It also serves as an initial point of interaction with your user that represents your brand messaging and tone.

1. Deliver value in the offer

The truth is, the best way to get people to convert is by giving them a good reason to do so. Unfortunately, sending users a weekly newsletter often doesn’t cut it. You not only need to have a good selling point to convince them to take advantage of what you offer, but you must also communicate that value proposition effectively in your copy.

Offering a content upgrade that’s relevant to your audience is a great place to start. For example, if your audience is interested in topics related to SEO, you can offer them a free SEO checklist that they can download if they join your mailing list. You can gate this behind a web form in order to capture important data and follow up with respondents at a later time.

There are many other excellent content upgrade examples you can use for your site. But the point is this: When you offer something of actual value to your visitors, it will be much easier to convince them to fill out your contact form.

2. Monitor your calls to action

While copy and design are essential, one of the most crucial elements in a form is the call to action, or CTA. Make sure that your CTA is visible, legible, and packs a punch.
Next, ensure the clarity of your CTA by using descriptive action words. Instead of “Send,” “Click Here,” and other common language associated with form submission, mention the specific benefit or outcome again.

A few examples include “Get My Free Guide,” “Get Your Copy Here,” and “Yes, I Want The Checklist,” among others. Once you settle on the copy for your CTA, take extra time to monitor its performance to see how your visitors respond.

Remember, changing just a word or two (or even removing them) can help increase web form conversion rates. You can always run A/B tests to see which CTA buttons work best for your organization and for your users.

Improve form placement

Like the form’s design, its location on a website or specific page plays a considerable role in converting customers. Ideally, you can place forms as calls to action above the fold if your purpose is to generate more sign-ups and submissions. As one of the first things people may see, there’s a good chance that they’ll be willing to submit.

However, it’s common for some landing pages to take the AIDA approach (Attention, Interest, Desire, Action) and place the form at the very end. Long-form sales pages occasionally use this template to maximize conversion rates.

Regardless of where you want to place your form, be sure to track and monitor its performance regularly. Using a tool like HotJar helps you see which elements on the page people click on and engage with the most.

Better insight about which parts of your web pages receive the best engagement is critical. For example, if the majority of visitors leave before scrolling halfway through the page, and your form is at the bottom, consider adjusting placement. Alternatively, you can tweak the copy to help bring the users down the page for the CTA.

The bottom line

Creating a form that converts requires you to evaluate best practices and make adjustments accordingly. By following the tips in this blog post, you’ll be able to design high-converting forms that are optimized for incoming lead and website conversions.

If you’re willing to put in the time and effort to handle this process carefully and effectively, you’ll already have an important advantage when it comes to reaping the benefits of high-converting web forms.

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