Despite being an adult, whenever I mention to my mom that I’ve been invited to something special, she always encourages me to send a thank you note. It’s one of those bygone manners that’s faded overtime as our society has become hyper-modernized. If Jimmy Fallon on The Tonight Show can master the art of the thank you note on his show, perhaps we should pay more attention to our thank you pages and even our order received pages on our websites.
I’ve assembled some tips to help you get the most out of your visitors after they have submitted a form or purchased a product on your website.
Why a Thank You Page?
By having a separate thank you page, you are sending a clear signal that the user completed a goal and that the message was sent successfully. The thank you page is a visual reward to let the user know they did something right.
A separate thank you page is a lot less complex than AJAX and offers a lower threshold of complications.
A Thank You Page for Each Form
“Thanks? Thanks for what?”
Consider having a thank you page for each individual form that you have on your website. If you have a general contact form and another form for more specific information, have a thank you page for each one.
There’s probably a reason why you have multiple contact forms, and there might be completely different procedures that must be completed after those forms are submitted. Let you users know that the completed that specific form for a more personalized experience.
Tell Users What to Do Next
Remember the last episode of The Sopranos, where the music stops abruptly and the screen cuts to black? That really confused people. Although I don’t want to get involved in why that was awesome cinematically and how it was meaningful, for the average viewer, it was deafening.
You should let your users know that not only did their form submit successfully, they need to know what to do next while they are awaiting your response.
This can include:
- Inviting them to share your website and content or follow you on social media
- Showing them the way to your preferred review sites so they can submit one of their own.
- Letting them keep browsing or shopping. Keep them on the site, maybe they’ll buy again.
- Encourage them to sign-up for your email list. Help them stay in touch with you and keep them coming back for more.
By telling your visitors what to do after they completed a goal, you are keeping them on your site longer and extending the experience.
Setup a Google Analytics Goal
Find out how often people are submitting forms in Google Analytics. This can help you determine a conversion rate for your goal. For service oriented clients, this metric is the single most important proof that SEO or other internet marketing practices work.
Setting up a Goal in Google Analytics with a thank you page is simplest type of goal in Google Analytics.
Label your Goal and check “Destination”
Set the Destination to the Relative URL (without the domain) of where your Thank You page is, or whatever page you wish to consider as a goal.
If your contact form correlates to a monetary value, such as a lead, you can enter that here.
If you have a specific path of pages you’ve developed to get your visitor to complete this goal, you can set that up here too.
Boom. You’re done.
Let the site run for a few days and check back to see if those goals are triggering properly. You can also add additional funnels to let Google know that you have a set path of pages of how you want or believe your visitors should land on prior to submitting the form.
Brag on Your Thank You Page
If you’ve got fantastic reviews, great testimonials, or a high level of followers on social media sites, this is a great place to add those.
If a user submits a form to you and they are transferred to a page with authoritative proof, you are adding to the users experience and proving to them your site is the right one for whatever they desire.
I’d like to reiterate: “Thanks for what?”
There is no reason for your thank you page to be indexed by Google. How is it helpful for a user to find your thank you page on Google? That’s complete opposite of the funnel you want to create.
I recommend adding a noindex meta robot tag to your page’s header. This is easy in WordPress with Yoast SEO.
No need to add nofollow, as there is nothing wrong with Google or other search engines for at least crawling this page and following the links.
If you run an online store, your thank you page, or order received in this case, should have a few more items on it to help your visitor. You want to do everything can in order make the visitor, who is now a paying customer, feel like every penny was worth it.
Add a link to download the PDF Invoice or receipt. This is incredibly helpful and can save the user time dealing with it themselves. In some countries, it’s the law to allow the customer to download the PDF Invoice right after the transaction completes successfully. It also just makes sense.
Just because a visitor buys a product, doesn’t mean they won’t buy again. This is an excellent time to show products that are similar to the one(s) your customer purchased or other featured items.
As you can see, giving the visitor a clear funnel to do more after they’ve completed a goal offers assurance that your site, product, and/or service is top notch. Just because the contact form was sent or the place order button was pushed, that doesn’t mean the experience has to end right then and there.
Implementing one or two of these items could extend the experience, or in the case of someone looking for support, dampen the emotions of a poor experience.
Steve Scott is the CEO & Director of Training at the Tampa SEO Training Academy. He has taught SEO skills to people from around the world and currently offers his hands-on search engine optimization training workshops in Tampa to individuals and businesses of all sizes. Corporate SEO training classes and consulting are also available.