During the design phase of any website, there is a major goal looming in the mind of every web designer: the success of their website and the online business. Websites will be designed by applying all the core design principles, keeping in mind the type of audience the business is targeting. The website design should be user-friendly and interactive, having high standards of usability. So, user feedback or user analytics is very important to track user behavior and analysis for further improvement of the web site. Web forms are key tools which provide valuable business and web design information.
What are web forms?
Web forms are the basic tools that interact with the user, collecting feedback and responses on different areas of web transaction, and also on web usability statistics. The user will enter some data in to the web form which will be sent to the server by a scripting language and will be validated and processed later.
Basic elements of web forms
Some basic elements of web forms include:
They allow the user to include a single line of text like a name, password, etc. The title of the text box should be very short and meaningful.
These are fields where the user can input multiple rows of data such as descriptions, feedback, etc.
These are cascading menus which provide a list of options for the user to choose from.
Here the user can select more than one option.
How to design usable and effective web forms?
To a large extent, the accessibility and usability of the web forms on a web page define the success rate of a site. There are various areas where the web designer should give extra focus while designing the
web site. A few of these areas are:
Select an appropriate form layout
There can be a different layout for the design of web forms but it will depend upon the content or data that should be collected from the user. Accordingly, the designer has to decide upon whether to have a
one-column layout or two-column layout. It is recommended to use a one-column layout if the form is very straight and simple. In a one-column layout design, the title of the field will appear first and
just below will be the text box to enter data. In two-column layout, labels and fields will be in two different columns.
In-line form validation using jQuery will eliminate all the ambiguity involved on the part of the user to enter data. This will make the web form more user-friendly making the data entry faster and error-free.
Pool related fields
The same or related fields can be accumulated together in a web form
making it easier for the user to use the web forms.
Accurate description for each field
The labels of each field should be in such a manner that they are simple and meaningful. The user should understand the exact data requirement of each field in the web form.
Relevant error messages
In case any error or incorrect information is entered by the user, proper error messages should be displayed indicating what went wrong and how to correct it.
Inform the user when the form is complete
Once the user submits the form, don’t let the user wait for decades. Inform him that the process was completed in a successful manner.
Web forms can be anything ranging from a simple sign-up form, contact forms, and shipping or credit card transaction data form. Forms on the web page should be simple and precise, convincing the user to make use of it.