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SEO Best Practices: Are Your Website Forms in View?

posted by Michael Epps Utley Michael Epps Utley
an illustration of a laptop computer with a red background on the screen and a form popping out with a user profile image, username, and password field on it

Website forms are meant to capture information from potential leads for easier follow-up. The fewer steps someone has to take to share their interest and their information with you, the more readily they’ll move through your sales funnel. That’s why having a form above the fold is a tried and true best practice for search engine optimization (SEO).

The What and Why of “Above the Fold”

“Above the fold” refers to the area of a web page a user can see before they have to scroll down. When there is an easy-to-use form in that area, it means the site visitor will:

  • Immediately know how to get in touch with you.

  • Understand how you’ll contact them with more information.

  • Easily share information and details with you so they can move on to the next item on their to-do list.

Google may not publicize a one-to-one relationship between form placement and SEO, but low bounce rates and longer site visits have long correlated with improved site positioning on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).

If you have a form that’s too complicated, a form potential leads have to scroll down to read/complete, or no clear way to get in touch with you, potential customers will find a competitor who is easier to engage with.

Where to Use Above-the-Fold Forms

While some sites utilize forms like this on every page, that may not be necessary for your business. The frequency at which to utilize forms depends on your website design approach and development and the recommendations of your marketing agency or team. In general, our clients have seen improved marketing analytics by making changes like:

  • Placing a form in the hero area of their home page, to the right of the copy that explains how they help customers and clients achieve their goals.

  • Adding the form to major services pages, so you can track form submissions for key products and services to see your sales strengths and opportunities.

  • Incorporating forms on content marketing landing pages for specific campaigns and promotions.

Keep This in Mind for Effective Website Forms

Placement is half the battle when it comes to optimizing website forms. Form design can also help or hurt your conversion rates. Here are some website form design strategies that have proven effective for our digital marketing campaigns:

  • Less Is More: When it comes to capturing information, the fewer the fields asking for information, the better. Stick with fields that ask for a potential lead’s name, email, phone number, and a brief message. You can get more information as you build relationships with potential customers.

  • Reduce Spam: Google Captcha keeps lead capture forms simple and secure while preventing spam and malware from corrupting your Content Management System (CMS).

  • Page Speed: Page speed is one of the most important marketing analytics metrics if you want to improve both user experience and SEO. Some form tools can slow down page load times, so be sure to retest your site using the Google PageSpeed Tool to confirm you’re not experiencing load errors or significant page load delays.

Optimizing forms makes lead acquisition easier. As long as your lead response approach is proactive, your forms can help get more people interested in your brand, your product, or your services.

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