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Unless you sell online, chances are one of the main objectives of your website is to generate online enquiries or new business leads. Dependant on your products and services, you may want visitors to pick up the phone and make an enquiry, or alternatively you may prefer visitors fill out your enquiry form and send their details to you.
This post will focus on providing tips and recommendations for those of you who would like to increase online enquiries.
Some of the best practice techniques we hear again and again about enquiry forms are:
This generally translates in to asking your visitor for their name, email address, phone number and then a text field for them to submit their enquiry. But it's always good to test conventional wisdom.
The problem with this approach is that you asking your visitor to describe their requirements, interests and other parts of their enquiry in one field. Dependant on your products and services, and the specifications of them, this requires a fair bit of effort in the typing department.
So, rather than providing another basic enquiry form like lots of companies do, there are a number of reasons why asking visitors for more information about their requirements can and does benefit businesses.
Here is an example where a longer landing page performed better for the business than a simple landing page. You can read more about it in the presentation at the end of this post.
Asking the visitor to provide more information in order to make an online enquiry provides a number of key benefits for your business, as well as benefiting your visitor.
Benefits for your business
Benefits for your visitors
In addition to the recommendations and benefits described above, there are also a number of best practice tips that I encourage all businesses to consider following on their enquiry form.
Although I would encourage you to provide a more comprehensive enquiry form to encourage the right type of visitors to make an enquiry, there are a few points to keep in mind.
Results and impact on the recommended approach described on this post can be seen on slides 36-42 on this presentation I have recently delivered.
Hopefully this article has opened up a few ideas for you to consider using for your enquiry forms. Remember, asking for more isn’t always a bad thing! What do you think?
By Paul Rouke
Paul is our Smart Insights expert commentator on usability and conversion optimisation. Paul is Head of Usability and founder of usability consultancy PRWD (PRoductivity Without Difficulty). He is a usability consultant, trainer and speaker who absolutely loves sharing tips, advice and customer insights to SME’s through to blue chip companies on how they can improve their usability and on-site conversion rates. Paul works with a range of recognised brands including Speedo International, Lakeland, JD Williams, Isabella Oliver, The Royal Mail and The Scout Association, as well as a wide range of SME’s who all recognise the competitive edge they can gain by investing in improved on-site usability to improve their conversion rates. Paul is one of Econsultancies well respected training team, and he delivers two courses, Usability and User Experience and E-commerce Usability and Best Practice. Paul also writes articles for Econsultancies award winning blog, sharing tips, advice and recommendations. Paul’s business PRWD also has a usability blog sharing tips and advice and company news. You can follow Paul on Twitter for his latest insights, links and commentary on all things usability and conversion optimisation, or if you prefer you connect by Linked In.
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