OK, the headline exaggerated it — most of these resources won’t help you improve your entire Lead Gen Website, just your Lead Generation Forms.
But, if your forms suck, then all that hard persuasive work you’ve done on the rest of the Website goes to waste, right? So why not get hot on improving your forms now, so you can enjoy a full pipeline of well-qualified prospects later?
So let’s start with…
Wisdom from the Eisenberg’s
Great information for ensuring your Website is pulling in profitable and qualified leads rather than tire kickers. This is one of the few resources that does actually talk about more than just lead forms. And just for good measure, here’s a ClickZ article from Bryan that also gives recommendations applicable to both your entire Lead Gen Website and your forms.
This is a great strategic, top-down look at the three big flaws afflicting most lead-gen forms. I’m sure you’re doing to know what those three flaws are, but you’ll have to click-through to find out 🙂
Resource #3: 7 Form Factors to Increase Conversions
This one looks at the major elements that are part of every lead generation form, and then tells you how to maximize the effectiveness of each element.
Now Let’s Look at…
Split Test Results Worth Studying
Resource #4: Wider Funnel Tests a Newsletter Sign-up Form
This is a great test for a few reasons, but mostly because the test explicitly forms hypothesis to test, prior to creating the test, rather than just throwing variations against a wall to see which one “sticks.” Plus the hypothesis and lessons learned are really insightful and broadly applicable.
Resource #5: Wider Funnel Tests for Form Length and Form Flow
Another solid testing write-up from Wider Funnel. Worth the read.
Case Studies & Usability Guidelines
Resource #6: Lesson From Madlibs Signup Fad: Do Your Own Tests
If you’ve never heard about them before, the Madlib style sign-up form proved a hit with several businesses and bloggers on the Web a few years back. But when this guy tested it out for himself, he found a different story. Bottom Line: best practices are in no way guaranteed to work in your specific situation, and surprising, head-slapping tests are fairly common for anyone that runs them. Think for yourself & do your own testing.
Resource #7: An Extensive Guide to Web Form Usability
Smashing Magazine has no shortage of great articles on Web Design and Usability. This one is no exception.
Resource #8: Testing Form Length Reduces Cost Per Lead
Marketing Experiments has a nice blog post on this, and one of the more interesting points about this isn’t the findings — since shorter forms almost always DO increase conversion, thereby driving down cost per lead — but the point made at the end: that the “extra” information you’re holding out for is probably not that accurate or valid to begin with. This is a great one to show to naysayers who fight the “shorter is better” mantra. That and the ol’ “Let’s just test it and see” strategy : )
So that’s all eight of them. Now go out and do some optimization testing!