Don’t put your contact form on the contact page

Written by Tom Greenwood - September 13, 2012

Article read time: 2 minutes

It almost goes without saying these days that every website has a contact form, and that contact form can be found on the contact page.

It seems logical that basic usability principles dictate that your main point of contact should be in the place that people will look for it, which will be on your contact page.  You wouldn’t want to confuse them by making them have to hunt around for it.  Would you?

Of course not.

So then why is it that the title of this blog post tells you not to put your contact form on the contact page?

Two reasons:

  1. I was trying to get your attention by saying something that would confuse you
  2. Because the contact page is not always the best place for your contact form

Contact Link in navigation

What do you mean?

Well, it is true that it is good to have a contact page with a form on it, the fact is that people have to leave the page that they are on and decide, of their own initiative, to go and find your contact page.  That’s a bit like putting the cash register of high street store in the yard out the back, with a small sign over the door at the back of the shop saying ‘Checkout’.  Why would you do that?

Take the contact form to the customer!

If there is a page where you want to generate enquiries (in many cases that is every page), then you need to make it easy for people to contact you directly from that page.  Conversions increase massively when you remove the barriers (however trivial they may seem) from standing in the way of your customers enquiring or buying something.

Need some proof?

On our website, we have a bar stuck to the bottom of the browser window that gives you our phone number, and that on-click, opens out into a form.  Yes, even right here on the blog.  When we added that form, our enquiries increased by around 10%.  That might not sound like a lot, but those are enquiries from people who probably wouldn’t have bothered going to our contact page.

Even more interesting is how our friends over at Dejan SEO changed their website to include a quote form slap bang in the middle of their homepage.  It’s the first thing you see when you reach their site.  You don’t need to go to their contact page.  You don’t even need to decide to ask for a quote.  It just tells you to do it, and you do!  Enquiries through the website increased by a staggering 800% following this change.

Similarly, you’ll notice that landing pages for online ad campaigns nearly always have a form directly on the page in a prominent position.  Take a look at these 35 landing page designs and see how many of them feature some kind of form directly on the page.

But the contact page is still good right?

Yes, the truth is that your contact page is as important as ever, and you shouldn’t neglect it.  BUT, what you also need to be doing is thinking about how you can generate leads from all the other pages on your website.  Get creative with the way that you integrate forms, display contact details and use messaging and styling to not only make people want to contact you, but make it super easy for them to do so.  Try it, and I bet you’ll see an increase in business.

Now leave us a comment, contact us, call 0207 112 8240 or try out the form stuck to the bottom of your browser.  Blatant huh!