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Three Ways to Improve Your Online Forms

June 30, 2011  

"Finding a balance between gathering relevant information from your leads and not sacrificing your conversion rate can be difficult," writes Billy MacDonald at the HubSpot blog. "You want to generate as many leads as possible while hooking your sales team up with information that will help them establish connections, build relationships and close deals." Here's how to create online forms that get the balance just right:

Start by talking to your sales team. Find out what a salesperson needs to qualify a lead and make initial contact. "Understanding these critical information points will allow you to craft questions on the forms of your landing pages that will give your sales team a head start," he notes. "And they'll love you for it."

Then write your form's questions. According to MacDonald, one of your greatest challenges might be crafting questions that elicit information without making your leads cagey. An easy way to assess a question is by reading it aloud to colleagues. "If it's too intrusive sounding," he says, "try [devising] another question or wording that will still get you the answers you want."

Keep it short and sweet. The longer a form, the more daunting it appears. Don't ask anything you don't need to know. And consider drop-down menus, which further shrink forms, provide ready-made responses and enable you to further segment leads for enhanced targeting and nurturing.

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