Forms are a Conversation

  • Published on Friday, 14 December 2012 05:37
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The users of your software always visit with a goal in mind. Often in web applications, a form stands between them and that goal.

Whether the user wants to join a community like Facebook to connect with their friends or use a project management tool to organize their business, forms are there to hurdle.

These forms aren’t necessarily bad, we just need to remember that they are a step in the process—a step that must be completed before the user can reach their goal. So we want to make that step as painless as possible.

A Conversation

Try thinking about the form as a conversation: “I’m going to ask you a few questions so that you can complete your task.” But like any conversation, context and order are really important. Let’s say you and I have just met and after a quick introduction I ask, “What’s your address?” Your likely response would be shock: “Why should I tell you?” After all, we’ve only just met, you don’t know anything about me, and I am asking for personal information. I haven’t given you any reason why I need it.

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