I hate small talk. I really, really do. I just don’t see the point in it. Two people locked in a conversational script  littered with generic questions and answers that leave the participants equally uninterested and uninformed. Why bother?

Well, after many uncomfortable interactions at various social gatherings, I realized that small talk has its purpose. Most people aren’t okay with jumping into personal conversations with complete strangers (go figure). Small talk serves as a way for individuals to get a feel for each other in a familiar and unthreatening way. People feel safe with the familiar.

A landing page form is your company’s introduction to a potential customer; it is your small talk. So how do you make sure that the “feel” they get for you is a good one? How do you make sure your small talk turns into a deeper conversation?

Follow these tips and you should have no problem.

1. Form Length

The length of your form should be equal to how valuable people perceive your content offer as being. The more valuable people perceive the offer to be the more information they will be willing to hand over in order to get their hands on it.

I know this might sound kind of weird but let me explain. If you are offering people a simple 10 step checklist (even if it is the best checklist ever) chances are that they aren’t going to take the time to give you their name, email address, phone number,  and location. But say you are offering them a free software trial (or whatever an equivalent offer is in your industry), they might be willing to fill out ten different form fields!

Your offer has to be more valuable to users than the time it takes them to fill it out.

2. Make Forms User Friendly

Not only will people navigate away from a form that is too long, but they will also navigate away from a form that is not user friendly and is difficult to complete. There are a few things you can do with the design of your forms to make them more user friendly:

  • Optimize for mobile use
  • Have clear, visible labels for each field
  • Effectively utilize white space so form is easy to read
  • Use check boxes when possible to minimize information user has to type

3. Use Smart Forms

While we are on the topic of user experience, another way to keep people coming back to your site and keep them downloading your awesome content is by using smart forms. Reward return visitors by setting up your forms so they auto-populate with their information or asks them different questions (once basic information like name, email, etc. is known).

4. Don’t Ask For Sensitive Information

We’ve all seen those forms that ask you for your phone number, address, height, weight and shoe size just to download a PDF.  It’s weird. No one wants to give you all of that information! Only ask for information that you REALLY need.

With the technology breaches that seem to be happening more and more lately, a lot of people are very wary of what information they share online. Don’t ask your website visitors to give out any information that you wouldn’t be comfortable giving out yourself.

What it all boils down to is knowing your personas; knowing what they like and don’t like. Make sure your landing page forms appeal to their tendencies.

Need some help getting inside the heads of your buyer personas? Well, you’re in luck! We have just the thing! Check out our buyer persona worksheet!