"Helping people who help people"

Forms on your website

She finally decided she was ready.  At least, ready to do some research to find someone for help.  She had never done therapy before and was nervous to even search.  It felt like being naughty online, seeking help for problems she should be able to deal with.  Off she went, to Google, surfing websites, reading profile after profile, in search of someone who mentioned her particular issues.  When it became clear everyone was saying the same generic thing, she started to grasp for things between the phrases, some tiny shred of information that might make her feel hope from the profile statements. 

Finally, she found someone, who maybe, possibly, might be able to help.  She started to cry.  All that pain, all the worry, the unknown of therapy, the cost of it. C ould she even justify it? Was her problem really worth money she didn’t have?  She went to the therapists website.  Found the “contact me” form.  And started to type.  Crying in sadness, dispair, and crying with the hope this may be the beginning of the end of her pain.

It took a long time to craft exactly what she should say.  She didn’t want to appear stupid, immature, or too weird.  She rewrote, recrafted, erased, started over, until finally she was exhausted.  She just had to send the first email.  The therapist will return her email and things can go forward.  She was still nervous.

Ready, set, GO!  Send form.

Error.

Blank screen.

WHA?????????????????????????????????????????????

After the shock of some form error, of losing everything she had written, of not wanting to go through THAT again, she decided it wasn’t worth it.  Nope. Maybe it was a sign she didn’t need help.  She was just too tired and drained to attempt to send a new email.  Maybe another day, with a new therapist who didn’t require a form, she’d try again.

 

Don’t be that therapist.  Don’t lose potential clients because you have a form that limits what they can share, that gives them one MORE step before they can contact you, that takes the control out of their hands and puts it on your website coding working properly.  And don’t risk your reply email going into your prospective clients email SPAM folder.  They have NO IDEA what your email is in the first place – because it’s hidden away, so even if they look at their Spam folder, how do they know if you replied? 

You may end up disappearing on a client because they can’t even email you back.  They’d have to be SUPER loyal to go back to your website after waiting an untold number of days, then refilling out that form, feeling even more vulnerable because you never replied (or so they thought.)  At least with an email address they can shoot you another email a few days after their first asking if you got their first.  If you had replied, then you know you have problems and can try other means to contact the client.

There are benefits to forms.  I’ll address those another day!

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