How your users can contact to you is of utmost importance. It amazes me every day the number of sites that make it just plain hard to contact the business!
I’ve talked before about how location based businesses need to easily show their location in standard locations (upper right hand of site and footer) – and you can see that in evidence on this site.
Our next step in the rebalancedsf.com project was to add an easy way for people to use a contact form.
My hands down FAVORITE form builder (and plugin) of any kind is Gravity Forms.* While it is a paid plugin (meaning you pay a small fee to use the software), I cannot recommend it enough – and I use it on every custom site I create.
This is the swiss army knife of plugins – not only can you create simple forms, but you can connect it with your mailing list and even paypal to create all-on-one payment and registration forms (great for retreats and events). I’ve even used it to create surveys and to sell products!
In Justin’s case, we made a simple contact form that allows people to connect with him – and it gives people the option to opt-in to his newsletter by simply checking a checkbox (FYI – This one little technique has added hundreds of subscribers to my newsletter list).
I’m an advocate of keeping your contact form as simple as possible — the more complex and more fields you give someone to fill out, the more likely they are to abandon a form.
I once had a client utterly confused as to why his 3 page (!) initial contact form got very few submissions. He could see from the analytics that thousands of people viewed the page – but the conversion rate was way under 1%. Changing the intial contact form to a few simple fields dramatically changed the conversion rate and allowed him to connect with his potential clients personally.
That first connection with your customer is so important – don’t turn off your potential buyer/client/student by making them work too hard!