Designing effective web forms

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18 Jan 16.

#Design

With many varying web design projects on the go, we’ve been discussing contact pages in depth and more specifically web forms. A contact section or page on a website is a necessity and common feature (we hope). But we can’t help feel that this is often neglected and a missed opportunity in website design.

Designing effective web forms starts by having the user in mind. If the form makes the user flustered or miffed, you’ll do untold damage to your brand. Whether you choose a single page form layout or have it split over multiple pages, let’s not terrorise your visitors.

Designing effective web forms

The form needs to look clear and concise so that it’s not going to be a drag to fill out and take a decade (that’s more than two minutes in internet land). It’s also really important to consider whether the user might be on a tablet or mobile devise at the time of filling out the form. The fewer fields the better.

If you do go for a form over multiple pages, make sure it’s really easy to nip back and make corrections. There’s nothing worse than filling out three pages worth of forms only to get to the validation step on something on page one is incorrect. (Personally I prefer single page forms as a user, I think seeing all the information that’s going to be required is better than filling out a monster form only realising right at the end you don’t know your blood type).

Obviously the industry and reason for completing the form is important (purchase, information request, registration etc) but if you put your user first it’s a failsafe way of providing a better user experience. Better user experience means better brand experience. Win, win!

From a brand point of view your form validation and ‘thank you page’ is a great opportunity. And last but not least, ensure that your forms work. Test, test, and test them regularly.

Multiple-page web form design

 

designing web forms

Simple web form design

simple web form design

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