Tag Archives: registration forms

Boost conversions with simple registration changes

The thought of testing big new campaign strategies may be as scary to businesses as an eight year old watching “Friday the 13th” – both can give you nightmares.

Instead of sticking their neck out with a new marketing idea right now, many companies are switching the focus to improving successful tactics that have lived up to their investment year after year.

The content registration form is one of those most proven tactics – and it’s a place where simple changes can make a big difference in your conversion rates.

The gurus at Marketing Sherpa recently dug through all of their best past case studies and B2B marketing research to find the most effective registration form tweaks that deliver the best results.

Here are some of the most simple ways B2B marketers have improved conversion rates of their registration forms:

Keeping it short. Long registration forms = higher abandon rates. Yes, you want to get as much information as possible, but you could be scaring prospects away with your long form. Instead, focus the questions on the information that’s most essential. Keep it basic, but add a follow-up communication strategy to collect more data once the prospect shows added interest.

Make it voluntary. Give prospects the information they want, whether it’s a product demo or white paper, then ask them for personal information. Strategically positioning voluntary registration forms alongside online demonstrations, and telling visitors that it was voluntary, has the potential to deliver “impressive” conversion rates.

Use secondary offers carefully. It’s usually best to limit landing pages to a single call to action, but in some cases, giving prospects a second option can boost conversions. If prospects aren’t ready to give you all of their contact information, but have the option to download a white paper, for instance, it could significantly improve your conversions.

Pre-populated fields work. If you have the advantage of knowing some of the prospect’s key information, pre-populate fields on the registration form to make it easier for them. One company found an almost 95% conversion rate increase after they started using pre-populated fields.

Take the “reset” button out. “Reset” or “clear form” buttons are a lingering, old-fashioned registration form trend that has worn out its welcome. You don’t want prospects to make it to the end of the form and accidentally hit “reset” instead of “submit.” Chances are, they’ll leave your site before the go back and fill in everything again.

What other tips do you have for improving registration form conversions? Please leave a comment and share what works for your company.

BtoB study finds better results with quick forms

People are willing to answer a lot of questions as long as they can complete them quickly, according to the latest BtoB study by Silverpop. Their business-to-business research also found that once registered, people are anxious to hear from companies.

“Time is the difference between a lead and a lost contact,” according to Silverpop’s Benchmark Study of Lead Management Practice. The longer it takes for someone to answer a list of questions, the more likely they will abandon the questionnaire.

From MarketWatch:

“The forms that were able to be completed quickly — say within one to two minutes or less — were most likely to be finished, while those that took longer were more often abandoned mid-way through,” said Bryan Brown, director of product management and development for Silverpop’s BtoB Vtrenz solution. “The number of required fields appeared to have little impact on completion rate.”

He said that “update” forms populated with pre-existing data the company had already collected from sales leads were completed at a rate 20 to 25 percent higher than new-lead forms. Brown recommends that marketers create forms that are simple, clear and brief, with fields that can be completed without any hesitation.

Researchers suggest when acquiring new leads that companies approach the lead with “as few questions as possible.” Companies should also avoid open-ended questions by providing drop-down menus with defined choices, to help evaluate information.

Once companies gather initial information on a lead, then marketers should send forms with pre-populated fields along with additional questions to acquire more information. Any new lead that expresses immediate interest in product demo or a call from sales should be sent directly to the sales department.

“Customers who receive a sales call within hours of indicating they’re ready to talk will be much more impressed with your program than if they sit for days without a contact,” Brown said.

Registration and lead acquisition forms: Are you asking for too much?

Pssst, here’s a secret… people don’t always tell the truth on registration forms. And, many will hit the road if you ask for too much.

Using tech buyers as an example, MarketingSherpa analyzed what buyers are willing to tell you and what questions go just a little too far.

They asked tech buyers “How often do you provide accurate information to the following inquiries?” and turned the numbers into the Chart of the Week.

More than half of respondents will give their name, email, industry, company name and job title. Over thirty percent of people rarely or never answer company size, phone or custom questions.

So, how do you collect quality leads without asking too much?

Mark Williams at HR Marketer recently tackled this subject in a recent post “Lead Acquisition Forms – When Enough is Enough.” If the reason for filling out the form is to gain access to a valuable information piece like a white paper, people may be more likely to fill in the form. Williams also shares how frustrating it is when you’re in a hurry and get stuck with a form.

Your safe bet is to ask for the basics, enough to make contact with the lead – name, title, company name and email. You may also ask for a phone number, although HR Marketer research shows that HR buyers prefer to communicate via email with vendors.

Williams advises to make more ‘personal’ fields optional like phone number, company address or company size.

As a general practice, usually the longer the form the higher your abandon rate will be. Forms that only ask for name and email will have much higher conversion rates, according to MarketingSherpa.

Before asking customers, ask yourself how important the data is to the company. For example, is your sales team large enough to contact all of the phone numbers you get through lead generation forms?

The key takeaway from MarketingSherpa – “Marketers need to think of lead generation forms as a transaction,” where time is the currency and information is the product. Focus on quality over quantity. Be careful not to turn away prospects, because you’re asking them for too much too soon.