Form spam, the relentless nemesis of lead generation and online communication collection, can be a major headache for website owners. It not only frustrates but also undermines the value of genuine submissions. In some cases, spam overwhelms the majority of form submissions, causing legitimate entries to be overlooked or ignored by weary reviewers.
I recently assisted a new client in resolving their long-standing issue of excessive junk submissions flooding their inbox on a daily basis. This problem had persisted for years, forcing them to sift through each submission to identify the genuine leads amidst the clutter. The amount of time wasted over the years on this task is beyond measure. With a few code tweaks we were able to put an end to this annoyance =.
After over 20 years of playing cat and mouse with form spammers, we’ve found a few techniques that work very well at cutting down on spam by up to 90%. There’s still 10% of Spam coming from actual humans submitting forms manually, but these are by far the minority.
In this article I’ll equip you with our small arsenal of tactics that will help you eradicate form spam and restore order to your tracking results and conversion numbers.
Prepare yourself to implement these five potent strategies and triumph over the form spam bots.
1. Form Field Validation: Harness the Power of Validation
Validation stands as your trusty sidekick in the battle against form spam. By implementing form field validation, you can effectively thwart those bots that submit nonsensical entries like “12345” as a phone number.
Thankfully, advanced form tools like Gravityforms offer backend mechanisms to combat such shenanigans. Activate these validation settings and witness those nonsensical submissions disappear!
2. The Honeypot Technique: Master the Art of the Hidden Field
While visitors can see the standard fields such as name, email, and phone number, you can deploy a secret weapon—a hidden field. These covert fields, strategically concealed from human eyes, serve to confound spamming bots. Remember, bots comb through a website’s HTML code, not the page visible to humans. They mindlessly fill out every field they encounter. This is where the hidden field comes into play.
By including a hidden field in the form that doesn’t appear on the website but is present in the code, you can swiftly identify spammers and distinguish them from legitimate submissions. Implement a backend filter to detect completed hidden fields and promptly block those pesky spam submissions.
3. CAPTCHA: Embrace the Power of Human Distinction
We’ve all seen CAPTCHA before. CAPTCHA is a security measure that verifies whether a user is human or a bot by presenting them with a challenge or task that requires human intelligence to complete.
While we prefer to hold off on this unless it’s really needed because it can sometimes be perceived as an annoyance for users, there are some cases where it’s needed. Consider implementing CAPTCHA in your forms to repel robotic intruders. Just remember to maintain a user-friendly experience!
As you grow and become better at leveraging the web to grow their their businesses it’s important to fortify your defenses and preserve the integrity of your lead generation efforts. Armed with these powerful techniques, you are on the path to conquering form spam and emerging as the champion of conversions!
Remember, fearless marketers, adapt, evolve, and stay one step ahead of those pesky spammers.
Don’t Let Obstacles Someone’s Already Solved Hold You Back!
Thank you for reading this article! I’m Jason Lexell, a web marketer dedicated to helping companies thrive by generating high-quality inbound leads from their target customers. If you’re facing challenges in improving your online visibility and acquiring more leads, I invite you to take advantage of a complimentary huddle session. Let’s kickstart a conversation about tailored solutions that can fuel your business growth. Together, we can pave the way to success. Contact me today to get started!