Lesson Four – Getting to Know Your Audience

Plato, Aristotle, Shakespeare. Masters of rhetoric and oratory, the human condition and stagecraft. Not three guys you’d usually associate with tips to improve form conversion, are they? Most of us wouldn’t, but then again maybe that’s why 99 out of 100 people walk away from a contact form without giving it a second thought.

These three figures shared something in common that you can harness for form conversion: they knew their audience inside and out. You don’t have to be a master philosopher or spend your life studying theater to master building a form that speaks to the people you’re building it for! We can lean a little (a whole lot!) on technology.

Use Google Analytics to get an idea of who your audience is.

This is waaay outside the scope of “just forms”, so but it’s so important for form conversion it needs to be at least mentioned. Google Analytics has a wealth of audience data that you can tap.

What parts of the world does your audience live in? You might be really surprised.

How does your audience break down by Age? Gender? Interests? Do you have a lot of movie fans that visit your site? Technophiles? Lifestyle and hobbyist aficionados? Sports and fitness buffs? Travelers? Do-it-yourselfers? Do you even believe that you can learn all that about your audience through Google Analytics? You can. It’s really kinda creepy, but it’s there.

Most people probably visit your site via mobile, but what kind of devices are most popular among your visitors?

All of this information can be leveraged to make your forms speak to your audience far more directly than any standard form can ever achieve. The more effort you put into engaging with them, the more likely they are to engage with your form.

How do I get Google Analytics? Can I even use it if I’m not that techy?

Anybody can learn the basics. It’s a rabbit hole you can chase with increasing complexity the farther you take it, but for what we’re talking about here, anyone can do it.

Check out Google’s Analytics Academy. The Google Analytics for Beginners course will show you everything you need to get started. It will show you where to place the tracking code to connect, but if you’re scared to edit, no worries. Take a look at Google Analytics Dashboard for WP by ExactMetrics.

Easy Mode: Using Analytics just for your forms.

Don’t want to deal with the rest of this right now?

Already have that all set up and want to take a deeper dive directly into form data?

Check out the IntelligenceWP and User Analytics add-ons for Ninja Forms. Both provide a wealth of metrics on your users, allow you to set goals and track engagement, and a whole lot more.

User Analytics lets you collect valuable user data on form submission without the hassle of integrating with any third party service at all.

IntelligenceWP is a much more robust tool that brings complete Google Analytics integration to your WordPress forms. Don’t worry, there’s a setup wizard. It’s magical 🙂

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Most of your users connect via mobile device. Build your form for them.

The majority of people browsing the web at any given time are doing so on their phones or tablets. That’s been the case for years now. If you’re designing your forms from your desktop for desktop users, give this some thought.

What’s functionally fine and aesthetically pleasing on your desktop may be anything but on a phone. Be sure to vet your form on your phone before it goes live. With Ninja Forms, you can even build truly mobile-first from your phone!

Here are some mobile-friendly pointers to live by when building your form:

  • Design with mobile in mind. A form that presents as clean and crisp in a mobile format will look great on a desktop too, but not always the other way around.
  • Dropdowns are evil. Don’t be that guy or gal that makes your users scroll through 100+ fields of a Country dropdown on a mobile screen if you can possibly avoid it. Look to alternatives when possible.
  • Field labels need to be at the top of the field, never to the left or right! Your users are working with limited horizontal screen space. Don’t make them scroll left to right in addition to up and down.
  • Each additional field on a mobile is especially painful. Eliminate nonessentials with passion.
  • Ghost text on mobile is makes your form particularly difficult to process. As eyes are drawn to white space, ghost text that can be only slightly detrimental to usability on a desktop can make your form a real struggle to parse on mobile.

If you’re struggling to get your design just right, keep in mind our extensions that make form design easy: Layout and Styles especially, but even Conditional Logic and Multi-Part Forms will give you better usability from a phone or tablet!