Did you know that the design of the forms on your website has a huge impact on submission rates? Yup, better form design could account for more newsletter signups, account setups and, most importantly, more sales!
At Ometria’s latest breakfast seminar, renowned ecommerce expert Dr Mike Baxter revealed how changing one tiny aspect of your forms can get you results, along with eleven other tips and tricks (now available in a downloadable ebook called 12 Things You Can Start Tomorrow To Accelerate Your Ecommerce Business).
For more advice about webform design, we suggest checking out this article: Ecommerce Web Form Design Best Practices: 12 Tricks for Making Your Forms Less Tiresome
“This research has been around for a while, but it’s not terribly well applied yet. What this is is eye tracking research, and what is happening here is that the size of the circle denotes the amount of time that the eye stays fixed at that point.
What the research reveals is that certain alignments of the form field label and the form field itself work hugely better than others. So if, for example, you have a form like this where the label is here and the form field is there, every time you want to fill the field in, your eye will typically jump back and forth several times for you to check. And that applies what is known as a cognitive load. The higher the cognitive load, the more effort will be felt and the more people will get fed up and say ‘I’ll do this later’ or ‘I can’t be bothered’.
So there are steps you can take to lighten the cognitive load so that people will far more readily complete the forms that you’ve given them rather than just abandoning them. The best by some considerable way is making your labels top-aligned (the cost of top-aligned labels is that it makes your form longer so it means more scrolling, though this is not as big an issue as it once was). The next best is to have right aligned labels - aligned next to the form.
With left aligned, you get a nice tidy left margin - you could argue that this looks neater, but you should abandon your design instincts, the one that looks untidier works best! Right or top aligned labels reduce the number of eye fixations by 50 per cent or more.”