High-performing landing pages have high-performing forms. Low-performing landing pages have forms that are overly complex, too long, or that even work poorly on mobile. No matter the reason, a form that takes too long to complete can lead to potential customers leaving your business for a competitor even if you have a better product.
According to Wordstream research, an average landing page across all industries converts at around 2.35%. The best landing pages – the top 10% – convert at a rate of 11.45% and above. So, how do you break away from having average forms? Here are a few user behaviors (and related tips) to consider when analyzing form field time.
What is field time?
Field time is a measure of how long it takes users to complete each field within your form. Fields the user expects, such as “first name” will usually be completed more quickly than an open comment or more unique field like “annual revenue.” This is important to consider because total form completion time continues to grow when you add these unique fields, potentially leading to fewer form submissions.
How does field time impact my bottom line?
The most obvious connection between field time and revenue is your form completion rate. In a typical situation, a form that takes longer than necessary to complete will convert at a lower rate than a more optimized option.
Beyond increased conversions leading to increased revenue, you should also consider the impact of a poorly-designed form on user experience. Oftentimes, a form will serve as one of the initial touchpoints a visitor has with your brand. If they struggle to complete this step, they may be less excited about taking any additional steps in your funnel.
How can I improve field time across my forms?
After taking a look at your analytics reporting including conversion rate and field time, you may notice specific fields taking longer than you’d like. This is when you need to start viewing overall user behavior as it relates to your forms.
Field order: Users can become fatigued after completing a few fields in a row that are more tedious than they’d like. Consider switching up field order to add space between your more difficult fields.
Labels or placeholder text: Some fields are universally understood. Others are more unique and require clarification. Testing new placeholder text within your fields to increase clarity may help users more quickly understand the information they need to provide.
Multi-step forms: Depending on which form builder you use, you may have the option to turn your form into a multi-step experience. Whether this experience goes across more than one page, simply flashes the next step within the same page, or uses natural language, breaking up the experience allows your users to take a breath between steps and potentially increases the overall conversion rate.
An example of natural language used in a lead generation form.
Form header and CTA text: While we’re mainly discussing individual field performance, form header and CTA text can greatly impact a user’s ability to complete your form. Of course, you need copy that catches the eye and encourages form completion, but it must also serve to explain the form’s purpose and reward. Are you clearly describing what happens after a form completion?
Mobile field time: You’ll likely see differences in form performance from mobile to desktop. It’s also possible that users abandon your forms from different fields in this setting. Consider the user experience implications of any dropdowns and pickers, and be sure your form is rendering as you’d like across a variety of mobile device types.
The goal of form optimization is not only a higher conversion rate but also acquiring better leads and building stronger brand loyalty. Top landing pages convert at a high rate while also laying the foundation of a stable business. Taking the time to make seemingly small tweaks to improve form field time can help you separate your business from the competition.