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Clients inc. Wilko, Harveys & Schuh
Sole UK Agency in Global Optimisation Group
1750 hours observing online consumer behaviour

Form Field Best Practice and Hints to Assure Wary Users

5th May, 2007

Forms – such an integral part of any website wishing to gather visitor data to allow for transactions to be carried out, logging in to account areas, website personalisation, registrations, competition entries, the list goes on.

Although in principle forms are simply different drop downs, text entry boxes and preference setting checkboxes and radio buttons, the visual and coding execution of forms can be the difference between an abandoned shopping journey and a new customer transaction, registration or application.

Checkout process forms

Crucial to an e-commerce websites success, these forms in general request personal information, delivery information and finally payment information.

Best practise advice for checkout process forms

I’m sure there will be more comprehensive best practise guides available for checkout process forms, but I hope this provides some tangible and clear guides as to the key areas of this process which I have experienced as having the most impact on conversion and drop-out rates.

Google Checkout is gathering momentum

Leveradging its global brand recognition and trust, Google now offers a new checkout solution, surprisingly titled Google Checkout. For a shopper, once they have provided their personal, delivery and payment details into their secure system once, as they visit E-commerce sites offering Google Checkout the visitor doesn’t have to re-enter all their details. For a seller, simply using a checkout system by such a trusted brand will not only streamline their checkout process for their customers, but the whole online trust issue amongst consumers will be negated, because it is Google.

I will be following the uptake by both consumer and businesses of this new checkout, as I don’t doubt for one second that it will prove to be another highly successful revenue stream for Google.

Form field hints for developers

For developers out there keen to provide inline and context sensitive form field hints, take a look at this interesting article on www.askthecssguy.com entitled form field hints with css and html





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