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8 tips to increase the usability of forms

Wiktoria Czerw
Content Editor
8 minutes of reading
8 tips to increase the usability of forms
Category SEO

Forms are essential to any website or application, as they allow us to collect valuable user data. However, if forms are not designed with usability in mind, they can be frustrating and lead to a negative user experience. If you want to ensure that your forms are easy to use, then these 8 tips will help increase their usability. From creating logical form structures to using appropriate field types, read on to learn more about how to make your forms as user-friendly as possible.


The importance of forms in websites

Forms are critical for gathering data as well as guiding users through the process of registering or making purchases. By ensuring that forms are simple and easy to use, businesses can ensure their customers have a positive experience when interacting with their site. A poorly designed form can prevent users from abandoning the form before completion, resulting in lost sales and conversions.

Moreover, a form that is easy to use encourages users to submit accurate information, reducing the amount of time needed to process the data. This can lead to increased efficiency in data management and quicker response times to customer inquiries.

Creating effective forms requires a balance between functionality and user experience. The tips provided in this blog post will help you improve the usability of your forms so that your customers have an enjoyable experience when interacting with your website.

Tip 1: Keep Forms Short and Simple

Forms can be a great way to collect information from your website visitors. They allow users to provide feedback, sign up for services, and purchase products. However, if forms are too long or difficult to fill out, it can lead to user frustration and cause them to abandon the form altogether.

The best way to ensure that users will complete your forms is to keep them short and simple. Ask only for the information that is absolutely necessary and avoid including unnecessary questions. Break the form into sections, so users don’t have to scroll through long pages of questions. Try to limit each page to one question at a time and provide visual cues like progress bars and validation messages to let users know how far they have come and if they have filled out the form correctly.

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Tip 2: Use Clear and Descriptive Labels

Using clear and descriptive labels is an important element in improving the usability of forms. Labels should accurately describe the form field and make it easy for users to understand the requested information. When a label isn’t clear, users may be left wondering what the form field is asking for, leading to confusion and frustration.

To ensure your labels are clear, avoid using technical or industry-specific jargon. Instead, use language that is easy to comprehend, even for those who are unfamiliar with the topic. Additionally, try to only use abbreviations or acronyms if they are well-known and widely used.

Also, be sure to use consistent phrasing for all labels in a form. This makes it easier for users to understand the form and provides more clarity.

Tip 3: Use Placeholder Text Carefully

Placeholder text is often used in forms to give users a hint of the input. While it can help save time by providing an example of what’s expected, it can also be confusing if not used correctly.

When choosing placeholder text, make sure it is descriptive and relevant to the input field. Placeholder text should always remain visible when a user starts typing to remind them what type of data is expected. It is also vital to use placeholder text that is as short and concise as possible to keep the form manageable.

In some cases, placeholder text can benefit longer or more complex fields, such as a description field for a contact form. However, it’s essential to make sure that the placeholder text does not contradict any other instructions in the form.

Tip 4: Provide Real-Time Feedback

Real-time feedback is essential to increasing the usability of forms. As users fill out your form, they need to know that their data is valid and that they are on the right track. Providing real-time feedback enables users to ensure their data is accurate and avoid mistakes without waiting for a response from the system.

Real-time feedback can take many forms, depending on the type of form being filled out. For instance, if a user is filling out a form requiring an email address, the form should immediately alert them if the address is invalid or already in use.

Another example is when a user fills out a form requiring a password. It’s useful to provide feedback about the strength of their password as they type. This helps ensure the user creates a secure password before submitting the form.

Tip 5: Make Sure the Form is Accessible

Accessibility should always be a priority when designing forms for websites. For forms to be accessible, they should be easy to navigate, understand, and interact with for people with disabilities. This means making sure that your form is compatible with assistive technology like screen readers and that your form elements have descriptive labels. Additionally, try adding tooltips or alternative text to elements if they contain complex instructions or require extra explanation. You should also make sure the form is keyboard-friendly, meaning users can tab through and fill out all fields without using a mouse.

Tip 6: Offer Smart Defaults

When filling out forms, people often like to get through them quickly and with minimal effort. One way to do this is by offering smart defaults. Smart defaults allow users to fill in the form faster by suggesting values for certain fields. For example, if you ask for the user’s country, you can offer a drop-down menu with a list of countries and pre-select the user’s current country.

Another way to use smart defaults is to set certain field values to certain predefined values. For example, if you ask a user to select an account type, you can set the default value to ‘Free Account’. This will save the user time by not manually selecting the free account option.

Finally, offering users a way to restore previously saved information is beneficial. This can be useful if the user has filled out a form but has been away for a long period of time or if the session has expired. In this case, a ‘Restore Form’ button can be offered, allowing users to restore their data from the previous session easily.

Tip 7: Allow Saving and Resuming

One of the most important tips for increasing the usability of forms is to allow users to save their progress and come back to it later. By allowing users to save and resume, you can reduce frustration and give them more control over the process.

You can offer users two options for saving and resuming their form: manual and automatic. Manual saving allows users to save their work at any point by bookmarking the page or manually saving a copy of their answers. Automatic saving allows users to save their work even if they accidentally close the page or navigate away from it.

Additionally, you should ensure that users can pick up where they left off if they close out of the form and return later. This can be done by allowing users to enter their email addresses when they save their forms to get a link sent to them with which they can access their saved forms.

Tip 8: Test and Refine

Testing and refining your forms is essential to ensuring that your users have the best experience possible. Test your forms with different types of users, including those with disabilities, to make sure they can access and use them. Check for errors and inconsistencies, and make sure all links are working. Consider running A/B tests to measure the effectiveness of your changes. Finally, make sure to monitor user feedback and adjust accordingly.

Testing and refining forms is an ongoing process and can help ensure that your users have an enjoyable experience. It’s important to remember that no form is ever perfect—but by taking the time to test and refine, you can get as close as possible!


Forms are vital to any website, so ensuring they are usable and user-friendly is essential. By following the 8 tips provided in this article, you can help improve the usability of your forms and create an enjoyable experience for your users. Keep forms short and simple, use clear and descriptive labels, provide real-time feedback, make them accessible, offer smart defaults, allow saving and resuming, and always test and refine. With these steps, you will be well on your way to creating forms that are easy to understand and use.

Wiktoria Czerw
Content Editor

Wiktoria is a language and editorial enthusiast whose passion for content drives her to create unique, SEO-optimized texts. She has always been intrigued by linguistics, and she now applies this passion to her profession by ensuring every sentence is accurate and logical. Wiktoria is known for her precision and timeliness – every detail matters to her, and she strives to perfect the content in every possible way.

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