A/B test forms to reduce abandonment

1. Gather baseline performance metrics like conversion rate and field-level abandonment rate for each web form.

The conversion rate is the percentage of people who complete the form divided by the total number of people who started filling out the form. Use a form analytics tool like Lucky Orange to find out the percentage of visitors that are abandoning each form field. A screen shot of a website with a form within the Lucky Orange heatmaps tool. Callout boxes note where to access the forms heatmap and how to select the form abandonment report from the menu.

2. Evaluate form fields to determine whether the information gathered in each field is essential for the visitor to successfully complete the task.

For example, if you don’t have to ask for a phone number, that may be a field you can remove since it’s typically a field that corresponds to high form abandonment. Note down information that you could request at a different point in the visitor journey.

3. Look at fields with high abandonment and either add clarity or remove them.

Test adding instructions to fields that may require specific inputs, like case- and character-sensitive password requirements or mailing addresses.  Note down fields that you can remove to test whether a shorter form converts better than a longer form.  Apply this same logic to your multi-step forms.

4. Choose one change from the notes you've made that you think will have a high impact, and test it against your current form.

Select one change per A/B test, so you can determine whether changing that specific variable increases your conversion rate over your existing form.  Make sure the traffic segments seeing the form don’t change greatly during the testing period to avoid new variables messing up your results.

5. Use a testing tool like Optimizely or Google Optimize to run your A/B test.

The test should be long enough to get you a sample size that’s sufficient to give you confidence in the accuracy of your test results. Some A/B testing platforms, like Optimizely, provide a sample size calculator to help you determine the sample size you need to ensure statistical significance.

6. Analyze the results of both forms using a form analytics heatmap to see if the new version of your form has improved your conversion rate.

7. A/B test other problematic form fields you identified earlier to find ways to further increase conversion rates.

8. Validate whether your increase in conversions from form changes helps you achieve your ultimate conversion goals.

Making a form easier to complete doesn’t always mean it will increase your objective of more sales, more qualified leads, etc. Check to make sure the higher conversion rate of your form is also resulting in an increase in these types of metrics.