User - Friendly, Multi-Step Form | Easy User Experience
Whether we know it or not, as consumers we go through all kinds of user journeys every day.
A user journey can be a checkout in a supermarket, online in on a E-commerce site like Amazon or submitting a survey or contact form.
Digital and Retail Customer Journey
User journeys matter, both for the business and the consumer. Nothing is more frustrating for a consumer than a broken user journey. If you are in desperate need to order medicine, you just want it to be quick and easy.
For companies, nothing is more painful than lost business because of problems in the process or simply just inefficient user journeys that consumers abort.
This is particularly important for B2B brands who work with a limited number of high-volume clients. A slight increase in lead conversions from their web presence can mean thousands or even millions in new business.
Multi-Step Lead Form Designed To Boost Conversions
Loosing even a single lead because of compromised user journeys is a big problem for brands, and the worst part: Many brands are not yet aware of it.
Sure, everyone knows about the importance of lead capture, but many brands got their attention in the wrong place. It’s not just the web design, the traffic and the content qualiy that’s going to bring you more leads. It’s the web forms and the user experience of how web visitors can turn into a lead.
Throughout the year 2020, the fast-food chain McDonald's is heading into a big turning point in its restaurant experience.
In the US, the company will implement self-service ordering kiosks in all of its restaurants.
Card payment touch screen panels inside a McDonald's restaurant. Image via https://www.marketwatch.com/story/mcdonalds-is-making-a-big-bet-on-self-service-kiosks-2018-06-04
Depending on where you are based, self-checkouts might have already been in place for some time. We tend to get used to them quickly and they typically do the job really well.
Have you noticed the difference from McDonald’s retail solution to web experiences?
Websites mostly rely on web forms for lead generation. Yet, when you think of web forms, what comes to mind? I certainly never used to think of forms as a great experience like the self-checkouts.
In most cases, websites use the most basic solutions for forms that are available: Web forms that are asking for name, email, company name, phone number, etc.
Example of a bad online form with a lower conversion rate
If you are lucky, you can leave a message with more explanation that you can add to your inquiry.
Nothing exciting and personal to your needs, right?
There’s a lot we can learn from the user experience in the example of McDonald's.
They understood that it’s all about the customer and a seamless experience. Instead of asking all questions at the same time, you see visual buttons of foods based on categories. The order process is covering different screen as a multi-step form.
The screens start with the food selection rather than asking for personal details or credit card. It sounds simple, but that’s exactly why these check-outs work.
They make the customer the centre of attention and start with the need first.
If you project this learning to web forms, then your online forms should also start asking about what your visitors cares about.
And this is what you can achieve with multi-step forms which are the polar opposite to standard web forms.
Impressive web form beginning with asking about user interest that leads to increased sales
Funnily enough, in retail you see the same trend. Think of restaurants in your local town. You probably find your food from a menu, but is this actually the smartest way to find the right meal?
McDonald’s screens show you a very limited number of information on the screen, based on your needs. The classical menu in a restaurant contains a big list of all kinds of foods, snacks, beverages, no matter if they interest you or not.
Multiple step checkout vs. traditional menu
I have nothing against a good old restaurant experience with menu, but there is really a lot we can learn comparing those different user journeys.
Another benefit of the self-checkout is the increased efficiency. When you get shown the foods of your interest in a visual and clear, you make your choice selection much quicker.
Let’s look closer into digital user journey and how you can use step by step forms as a B2B business to unlock up to 5x more lead generation from your website.
Before starting our multi-step form generator, LeadGen, we used to run web design services for busines clients. Our website contact page was one of the key channel that helped us generate leads. Back in 2016, our founder Waseem had two pain points: how to get more leads, but also to ensure he gets the right quality of leads. In making those two components work, he could crack the code to consistently generate new business and grow his web agency.
The Evolution Of LeadGen App Multi-Step Form Builder
Inspired by Apple’s online support forms, that easily navigates the user to the right answer of the problem, he thought multi-step forms would be a good for his website as well.
Apple's online support form
Step forms existed on few websites back then, but there wasn’t really any tool out there that would allow him to this type of form for his web-page. Waseem make a virtue of necessity: To create a step form, which he felt was the best route to more quality leads, he had no other choice than building it from scratch.
He asked his web developers to create a contact form with a series of different questions before asking for any kind of contact details and personal information. To this day, this same form generates leads for his agency!
Apexure's web form design for lead collection
Now, this web form was built using custom code which is a big pain if you want to roll out multi-step forms on a larger scale, including client campaigns.
After testing and optimizing the new contact form back then, Waseem saw tremendous potential is providing the same online experiences for his clients. After all, 80% of his business came from B2B companies that measure online marketing success in lead collection, not direct sales.
In late 2016, Waseem worked on creating a very lean backend solution to create multi-step lead forms. He gave this first web app the name “Mailer”.
Mailer - A web app that creates multi-page forms
It did the job well, but was really not more than an internal agency solution that still needed a bit of skills to create step by step forms.
That’s why in 2017, Waseem thought of building a proper tool that anyone in the agency, including account managers could use. That's when multi-step form generator, LeadGen was born.
LeadGen Multi-step Form Generator Dashboard
It wasn’t until 2018 until we started rolling out a beta version of LeadGen to the world, allowing any marketer to create their web forms in a multi-step style.
In summary, we got in love with multi-page forms because for B2B brands they provide a huge improvement in user experience and provide chances for better conversion rates.
Creating different multi-page form designs in LeadGen Form Builder
Our main agency contact form converts at a staggering 13%. Out of 100 visitors on the contact page, we get 13 leads. Most importantly, these are qualified and real leads that we can actually work with.
Apexure's contact us step by step form for lead collection
Our contact form filters out spam, makes it practically impossible for a bot to cause spam issues, and provides us with details about a project inquiry.
Multi-Step form example with one question per step
Step forms present different questions on different form steps rather a single page. This way, you can provide an easy and simple user journey for even more complicated inquiry processes, lead forms and surveys.
Multi-step forms are based on the foot-in-the-door technique. The more questions you get a visitor to answer, the more likely it becomes the form gets filled.
An interactive form that presents questions on different steps rather than a single page, creating a complete user journey that only shows the relevant information at the step.
Think about it yourself: If you get into a conversion with a good salesperson, you’ll get ask about your need first. You’ll explain what you need, what you expect and before you’ll get asked about personal details, you have already taken your time to share a lot of information. Because you spent this time, even if it doesn’t take long, you are way more likely to take the last final steps. You are happy to provide your email, phone number or address to get more information.
Why do humans do this? Well, there’s a few important points that come into effect here. Firstly, every question you answer is a micro-commitment. In real life, every “Yes” and answered question makes you less likely to stop. Online, the more you go through the form, the more reward you feel because you already invested in the process.
This is an effect that you can’t really experience in a simple web form.
A multi-page form often has a progess bar which indicates how far you’ve come which plays into this tendency to continue the journey.
Secondly, multi-page forms are simply much easier to process. If you see 10 questions at the same time, you feel more overwhelmed than having everything nicely presented on different stages.
Users step by step process of filling a multi-step page form for lead collection
Finally, you can personalise multi-step journeys which you can’t do with single-step forms. For example, you can ask a service requirement question with 5 choices on step 1. When clicking on a certain choice, you can send the onto a different path than for other choices.
This way you provide a chatbot-like experience in a form, providing relevant and personalised information that makes your web visitor feel understood.
Speaking of chatbots, can these not be an to an alternative to lead forms?
Chatbots for customer support service
No. Chabots are great for support request and two-way interaction, less for defined offers and lead capture.
A lead might be ready to inquiry and just wants to get in touch. A chatbot would not be appropriate here because there is no need for a conversion, especially not for a human-like bot with possibly irrelevant answers that makes things more complicated than they have to be.
A multi-step form example built with LeadGen App
Multi-step lead forms are a great solution for any type of business that needs to capture more quality leads. No matter how big your organization, lead inquiry forms greatly benefits from step forms because of the user-centric and structure way of presenting information.
Step forms are perfect for B2B brands because these are type of companies which have a huge needs for lead capture. Especially if you are a Small-or Medium-sized business that only works with a limited number of clients, multi-step forms can be a great fit. You can use them for increasing lead quality at the same time.
There is not just a good case for using multi-step forms for lead capture. They are also great for capturing client project details in a briefing. Also, you can use them for hiring processes, questionnaires, conditional forms, calculators, quote generators and more.
If you are a B2C brand, you can use multiple-step forms for the same purposes, including e-commerce checkouts, linking the form to a payment gateway.
Marketing and web agencies use these forms on their own presence, but even more so across their client campaigns.
A lot of LeadGen users are agency owners that work on client lead campaigns and web projects. You can use LeadGen to build lead-generating landing page & conversion-focused web-design.
Above all, you can increase conversion rates through rigorous testing. Test your lead forms as much as you test your web designs and online ads. This is exactly where most marketers stop. They invest a ton of money into high-quality web design that looks good, but actually doesn’t convert. They invest a ton of money in blog content that has no love and just use simple forms.
You can now imagine the result of all this: You are missing out on a ton of conversions because there wasn’t enough focus on the different conversion-driving elements, including the lead forms.
You might have the most beautiful lead form, but it just doesn’t convert well. Or you might have a form that ticks all the boxes for conversion-friendliness, but your web-page is unoptimized, contains poor text copy or you simply have the wrong type of traffic.
LeadGen AB Testing
This now sounds like a huge mountain to climb, looking at all these different factors. Sure, there is a number of factors, but the lead form is a big one of them, so it’s a good place to start purely with the form.
Create two different form variations and run a form A/B test via LeadGen. It’s important you don’t mix form variations with landing pages variations. Focus on just one factor: Your form.
Different form variations to perform A/B test
Simple things that in theory should get you better conversions are a lower number of questions performs and personalization (starting with service need before asking for personal details).
Other factors that matter are form design (match it with your website and brand identity) and fast form load time (dependant on image and content files used in form).
Example of a great multi-step form design
It's an interesting question what type of online forms, single-step or multi-step forms, generate the most results in terms of lead collection and conversions.
If there was a clear answer as to which one is better, then probably only one type would be used on the internet.
Single-step forms just have one form step that contains all questions and content:
Long single-step online form to collect web design project requirements
Multi-step forms present questions on different form steps, one at a time on different screens.
Best online form design with service selection buttons
Test out the example inquiry form yourself below:
First of all, let’s define how to measure the effectiveness of an online form. In nearly every use case, the objective of an online form is to get people to submit the form. The higher the conversion rate (Form submissions/ page visitors), the better.
LeadGen dashboard with form and conversion rate metrics
To know how LeadGen multi-step form builder helps to build different and the best online forms in the healthcare industry click here.
Just by comparing a lead capture form to an employee feedback form, it becomes clear how different lead forms can be. The lead capture form which is the key to generating leads for businesses should ideally be as simple as possible. Less questions and fewer distractions are more likely to drive conversions than long and complicated forms.
In terms of the form length, a more compact and concise form will win over a long form with unnecessary questions, e.g. “How did you hear about us?”. Such questions can still be asked later but within a lead capture form, this is just too much in one question.
It doesn't mean that a multi-step form design with a lot of questions doesn't work. They can be very useful when you have the luxury problem of too many leads to ask a lot of qualifying questions to achieve less but quality leads.
To find out if a multi-step form design or a single form works better for your page, the answer can only be found with testing. Form A/B testing is a great way of understanding what type form is likely to generate more conversion over time. An A/B test is a commonly used experiment tactic by marketers when comparing landing pages and website variations with each other.
Two similar online forms competing for an AB test
The important thing with LeadGen App multi-step form builder is that you don't even need two different page variations. All you need is to create two form variations and start a LeadGen experiment. Give it enough time and a significant amount of conversion data to draw conclusions.
For example, a web form with under 500 visitors will give you "only" 10 leads with 2% conversion rate. Still, this is not sufficient data to confidently understand which form type converts better.
Based on experiments of forms that we have run in our digital marketing campaigns, the multi-step form design is the better choice for B2B lead capture forms. It gives the user complete focus on one question at a time rather than showing a long-form with many fields.
Here is the LeadGen multi-step form demo that came out as the winner from the AB/Test. Navigate through the form to get an understanding of how it works and how the form is embedded into a web-page:
When you just ask for name, email and message, then a simple single-step form could also do the job well.
Multi-step forms are great for lead capture campaigns. If we look at employee feedback forms, it could be better to use a single-step form rather than a multi-step form design. This is because a more formal form design would be appropriate for it.
The effectiveness of a form varies depending on the purpose of the form. A good tactic is testing two variations for each form until you found a winner. The winner can be tested again with a new challenger variant. This way, you will ensure that forms are most user-friendly and will help you drive better conversions.
You can build both multi-step and single-step forms within our tool LeadGen. Also, test them via A/B form testing where you can test form on only one landing page.
There are many multi-step lead form examples that come to mind that stand out to make form filling a lot more intuitive.
This is an inquiry form for a digital agency, providing landing page design services:
Start screen, landing page with two Call-to-actions, find out more on page + enquiry (talk to a specialist)
Let’s assume you are ready to talk to the specialist to get in touch. A multi-step form then opens that features different questions in a very simple and user-friendly 3-step form.
Firstly, it asks a qualifying question on the service you are interested that you can choose via a dropdown.
The page also shows a pop-up of the most recent leads to create authentic urgency for more conversions (Built with LeadProof in LeadGen)
Multi-step form design with first form screen, listing service requirements
Secondly, it features an open text field, asking you to provide project details. This shows the potential lead that you are interested in hearing about the project first before asking for personal information such as email and phone number. The order of questions can really make a difference in forms.
Second screen, taking project information requirements in multi-step lead form
Finally, it will ask for personal information which at that point you are likely to provide because you made the effort to through 2 steps before already. With the step form, you can get micro-commitments and a few buttons clicks to complete steps, which you couldn’t do on a single-step form. That’s why it’s not only great for user experience but also increased conversion rates.
Final form screen, personal contact information and customized “Book now” button
Multi-step form creation used to be really cumbersome as you can tell from our story, shared earlier on. With LeadGen, we want to share all our learnings and digital marketing knowledge to provide the multi-step form-builder tool for marketers.
LeadGen Dashboard to track form performance
In LeadGen, you can easily create all kinds of multi-step forms based on your needs. Simply create an account, head over to the forms section and click on “Add new form”.
Our multi-step form-builder is intuitive to use. You can easily add new step by clicking on the red plus button after each step. Alternatively, if you want to use more than one question per step, you can add individual questions by clicking on the orange plus button.
Add a series of steps with questions to create the best online forms
Add your series of form steps and choose from different pre-set questions that already give you the type of question content you need. We got question types like multiple choice, email address, phone number, first name, last name, calendar selection, address questions and more.
Within question, you can choose from a lot of style variations, for example, if you want to show radio boxes, horizontal or vertical buttons or visual image buttons. Also, you can add text boxes with custom text, graphic and GIFs to catch your user’s attention (Although I’d probably not recommend this for a simple lead form).
Once you have added all your questions, head over to the design tab where you can set customize pretty much everything about your form design: Form sizing and shapes, button call-to-action text, fonts, borders, shadows and much more. It’s super handy for designers and any marketer who doesn’t want to touch any code. LeadGen is built for anyone without coding experience and makes it easy to create a beautiful looking multi-step forms.
Easily Design Your Form with LeadGen Form Generator
Once your form is designed, all you need to do is copy the form embed code and place it in your website, e.g. your contact page or a landing page. LeadGen works with an HTML snippet which you can pretty much use in any website builder with HTML editor, like WordPress, Instapage, Unbounce, Clickfunnels, Wix, Squarespace and so on.
Embed Your LeadGen Form in Your Website or a Landing Page
Click on the button to build your first multi-step design in LeadGen App:
While forms typically convert best with a low number of questions, multi-step forms have a high engagement even with long forms. Multi-step conversions are more predictable compared to single-step forms because of the improved user experience.
Whenever you need to ask for a lot of questions, send users onto different paths or qualify leads: Multi-step forms should be your preferred choice for highest conversions.
Multi-step conversions can also be improved via tools like A/B testing. LeadGen App provides A/B testing features and automatically finds out the winning form variant after presenting form visitors different forms. This and many other performance features help to increase conversions in multi-step forms. Most importantly however, the character of using steps instead of a long vertical forms is a powerful tool that encourages a lot more people to complete forms
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