Form submissions might not seem like a big deal from the client side. On the company side, however, they represent a huge leap in the customer journey. Something in your top-funnel content convinced this visitor to engage further with your company. What was it? That’s where form tracking comes in.
Form tracking is about more than just finding out how many people submitted a form. It allows you to analyze the crucial interactions that led to this conversion so you can find the elements of your website that work really well and rid your site of the ones that don’t.
In this series we’ll cover topics related to tracking forms in WordPress, offer tips and tutorials on different tracking methods, and provide solutions to common issues you might run into.
Introduction to forms
The anatomy of a form
- <form> the container element that defines the form
- <label> the text that tells you what information to input in the adjacent field
- <input> the fields in which users enter information (not limited to text). Examples of different inputs are:
- Drop-down menu
- Select a file
- Radio buttons
- Text area
- and so on
- <button> a button can have one of three functions:
- Submit: sends the form data to the web server
- Reset: clears the data entered in all fields
- Button: has no default behavior
After a user clicks a “Submit” button, the form data is then processed and stored in a web server.
Popular form-building plugins on WordPress
Contact Form 7
- Free plugin
- Large support system: it’s one of the most widely used WordPress plugins with over one million active installations
- Easy to create forms (simply select the field you want to add and CF7 will generate the tag for you)
- Interface is not user friendly
- No styling options directly available
- Extensive options available with the free version
- Aesthetically pleasing and simple drag-and-drop interface
- Styling customizations (limited in the free version)
- You can view submission data from within the Ninja Forms tab on WordPress
- Add-ons must be purchased (their add-on bundles start at $99 or you can purchase each add-on separately and they vary in cost and add up quickly)
- Easy-to-use drag and drop form builder
- Advanced field and styling options for intricate forms
- If you choose to purchase add-ons in Ninja Forms, Gravity Forms might end up giving you the same (or more) options than Ninja Forms for a lesser price
- No free version
- Access to pro and elite add-ons are pricey
And these are some of the most commonly used forms:
- Contact Us
- Newsletter Signup
- Account or event registration
- Customer Feedback
- Sales Inquiry
Some forms have more business value than others (i.e. a sales inquiry submission is more likely to lead to a sale than a newsletter signup), and we’ll go over that in a future post.
Why should you track them?
- Pinpoint usability issues: Use form tracking to determine if there are areas of your form that discourage users from completing them. Maybe a large percentage of users who start to fill out the form abandon them at a certain field. Does it take too long for them to complete? Are the instructions unclear? You can zero in on these specific interactions and really improve the usability of your forms.
- Get to know your potential customers: Form tracking gives you additional data about where your visitor got there and what elements on your site they respond well to. Tracking user behavior from start to purchase and beyond will help you come up with a more company-specific version of the customer journey.
- Improve ROI: Form submission tracking can give you invaluable insights on the overall effectiveness of your content. Use it to back other conversion data and incorporate more of the revenue-generating elements onto your site. That’s why we’re all here, right?
Form tracking methods
You could manually track form submissions using the data stored in your web server, but you would be missing crucial audience and referral data (among many other things). The best way to track form submissions is to streamline your WordPress forms with your Google Analytics account, which you can do in a few different ways:
- Creating a destination goal in Google Analytics
- Creating an event in Google Analytics
- Using a WordPress plugin
We’ll start to dive a little deeper into each of these methods over the coming weeks. Stay tuned!
Next week: Destination Goals
Want more content like this? Sign up for our newsletter below or follow our LinkedIn page for updates!