Picture this: the dreamiest of dreamy ideal client brides is visiting your website. She reads your about page and thinks, “Wow, this photographer totally gets me. I want to be her friend!” She visits your weddings page and thinks, “Yes, totally in my budget!” She hops on over to your contact page…and leaves your site.
What the heck just happened????
Your contact page is the “closer” on your site. It’s the page that magically turns visitors into leads. Even if the rest of your website is amazing, if your contact page is lacking, you could be losing potential leads in that precious last minute.
Even I sometimes make the mistake of thinking designing contact pages is “easy” because they are so short & sweet. But just because a page is short doesn’t mean it can’t be intentional.
The first step of designing any page on your website is determining its goal. The goal of your contact page is pretty simple: for users to inquire with you about your services. That means that every aspect of your contact page should serve that goal! Everything on your contact page, from words to visuals, should be making it easier for clients to inquire about your services.
Today I’m sharing all my best tips for designing a contact page that does its job and turns your visitors into leads.
Don’t leave users guessing what’s going to happen after they inquire with you. Tell them exactly what they can expect after completing your inquiry form. On my site, I say, “Complete the form and I will get back to you within 1-2 business days.” And then, of course, live up to your promise! If you say they will get a response within 24 hours, you should be prepared to do so!
In that vein, the button users click should also tell them exactly what’s going to happen when they click it. Typically people use the word “submit,” but that’s really vague and doesn’t explain what’s going to happen after the user clicks the button. My form button says “send your message,” since that’s what will happen after they click the button—their message will get sent to me. As always with buttons on your site, make sure the form submit button very clearly looks like a clickable button. Use a rectangle about 40-50 px high, and center the text.
Good user experience includes giving users appropriate feedback when they take actions. When a user submits their form, reassure them that their message was sent and when (and how) they can expect a reply. For example, you could say, “Thank you! I’ve received your message. Please check your inbox for my response in 1-2 days.”
Once users are on your “thank you” screen, it doesn’t mean they are necessarily done with your site. Let’s imagine a case in which they simply submit their inquiry and move on. What are they probably going to do next? Research and inquire with your competitors! Keep your users’ attention by inviting them to visit your blog!
Studies have shown that conversion rates increase with the fewer form fields there are. That’s why I encourage my clients to include no more than 5-7 items in their form. Some information you actually need: their name (so you know how to address them), their email (so you can respond to them), and their wedding date (so you can see if you are available). Potential clients know how necessary this information is and they will be happy to tell you!
Everything else is information you want: their number of guests, their proposal story, their wedding colors…you get the idea! Many of the wants can wait until you are a little farther along in the inquiry process. At best, your clients will give you an answer that may or may not be accurate, and at worst, you risk confusing or annoying them. It’s not worth the risk! A couple extras I do like including are asking who referred them and a more open-ended question where they can tell you as much or as little about their wedding as they choose!
Form design best practice (which if you can believe it or not, is a thing) states that forms should be one column. This is because it’s more likely that users will misinterpret items on your form or fill it out incorrectly. Keep your form to one column and stack the fields vertically to make things easy on your users. Left-align the text (form labels and input fields) so that users’ eyes can easily follow along.
Ensure that users can quickly and easily select the next field by using the “tab” key. In Showit, you do this simply by putting your input fields in order from first to last in the left panel. Here’s a more detailed explanation if you need it! It’s also a good idea to order your form fields from easiest (your name) to hardest (tell me more about your wedding). This makes users more likely to complete the form because by the time they get to the harder questions, they’re already mostly done!
Also, label your form fields in addition to the fields themselves. This is because the input field text disappears once the user starts typing. They could forget what exactly they are supposed to type, so having a label always visible is good practice. Check out this example from my own contact form!
On mobile, size form fields a little larger so they are easily clickable. Size the submit button up to the full width of the screen. Form fields should also stretch the full width of the screen.
Once you’re done designing your form, you will want to test it on mobile and desktop. Ask friends with other types of phones from you to test of theirs as well. Practice submitting from your form and make sure it sends to your inbox!
I’ll wrap it up with one last quick tip: always list your email address on your contact page. Some users may simply prefer to send an email than to complete a form. Remember, the goal of your contact page is for users to inquire with you. An email still counts as an inquiry! Don’t miss this easy opportunity to capture more leads!
Your contact page is such an important page for your business. It turns website visitors into leads (who eventually turn into clients, aka the people who pay you!). So it’s definitely worth your time to make sure your contact page is just right.
I’d love to hear about your contact page in the comments!