Pick ten marketers and they'll give you ten different opinions on how many form fields are optimal for conversion on website forms.
Every website has a different audience, and achieving perfection on the first try is unlikely. We spend a lot of time on this stuff, and have found that the type of personal information your are requesting is just as important as the number of form fields.
However, we always need a place to start, and numbers don't lie.
Eloqua perfrmed a market research stufy on this and found out some interesting statistics.
[blockquote]61% of Forms have 5 to 10 Fields and convert 40% of unique visitors.[/blockquote]
[one_third][image src="http://thinkhandy.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/chart13.jpg" lightbox="true" alt="conversion rate and forms" autoresize="true" clickthrough="false"][/one_third][two_third_last]Click the chart to expand and you will learn that there is a sweet spot. For optimal conversion rates, start with between 5 and ten fields in your lead generation form. You might also consider the stage in the buying cycle of your visitor.[/two_third_last]
If the form leads to redemption of an offer that one might redeem in the discovery stage of the buying cycle (such as researching methods of achieving their goal), you might be best served with 5-7 fields. If the form surrounds a "bottom of the funnel" offer like a free assessment or pricing sheet, you can probably get away with asking for more information.
Top of the Funnel Offers
What: Blog Articles, Tip Sheets, Checklists
Voice: This content should surround what you do, and not be about you. This should be helpful information designed to educate your prospect well enough to want to see how you perform these services.
Ideal Number of forms: 5-6
Middle of the Funnel Offers
What: eBooks, Whitepapers, Case Studies
Voice: This content should surround how you perform your core services. This content should educate your prospect well enough to want to discuss how you can perform these services for them.
Ideal Number of forms: 7-8
Bottom of the Funnel Offers
What: Webinars, Consultations, Free Trials
Voice: This content should surround how you can perform your core services for the prospect. This content should be personalized to each prospect. In the case of a free consultation, the prospect should understand what it would be like to be your client, or how you would tailor your services to them.
Ideal Number of forms: 8-10
The most important thing to do is test. Monitor results and always be increasing your conversion rates.
The most important aspect of lead generation is underrstanding your buyer. Developing marketing personas is critical to driving more quality traffic to your website, and then converting those website visitors with offers they will want. No matter how many fields they have to fill out.
For more on developing killer marketing personas for your digital efforts, download our free eBook on the subject below.