From taking admission to the school of your choice to giving your feedback in your favorite restaurant, forms are everywhere now. But the prospect of filling up forms can be a very painful task, even frustrating at times. Is the alignment of the labels or the use of multiple colors distracting you? The complex formatting can be at times a challenge and whoever said that a multiple color scheme can attract users was addressing only a fraction of the problem. Here are some practical guidelines aimed at improving the usability of forms and making them more effective and efficient.
Single Column Layout
According to recent studies, readers’ response and feedback on forms, the vote seems to be unanimously in favor of single column layout. Not only do they improve the readability of the forms but also boost the level of clarity and usability. Another benefit of this formatting is that it helps to optimize the form length, and the input is a way more streamlined fashion. The single column layout also helps the user grasp the form’s content better, and there is no uncertainty in the user’s mind about what value needs to be put in which column.
Top Alignment Necessary
This requisition has pure scientific backing. Studies indicate that keeping a uniform direction in your entire form layout goes a long way in improving its readability. A top alignment makes it possible to have 4 visual fixations but a single direction as opposed to other formats like Left alignment where the number of visual fixation and direction is doubled. The increase in the number of directions and visual fixations makes it all the more difficult for the reader to comprehend the form visually and thus lessens its appeal and the resultant rate of conversions a swell.
Keep the Contents Short
While creating a form you might be tempted to add some more elements, include a couple of additional matrices or put in a few more questions. But be careful to weigh out the pros and in doing so. Do not look at unnecessarily increasing the length of your form. Think hard and take a pointed decision. List out the essential elements and the core issues addressed by your form. Limit the questions in a fashion that the form’s length can be contained within reasonable limits as well as all the necessary elements that comprise of the core of the form are not compromised.