Why Online Businesses Should Employ Inline Validation

What is inline validation?

Inline validation is a way of checking that a user’s data is valid by providing useful feedback before submission. It significantly enhances the usability and  UX of forms and reduces form abandonment rates by providing a quicker way to enter address details. Loqate’s address verification technology can reduce address entry time by up to 78% and cuts back data entry errors at point of capture by more than 20%, all improving the end-user experience.

If filling in a form is like starting a first conversation with a business, well, the submit-and-response web form is a bit of a mute. Users can enter the equivalent of a long monologue without any feedback from the form – until they click submit, which leads to predictable dissatisfaction if the form doesn’t accept their response. 

The inline validation form responds to user submissions in real time, which is much more obliging to users, and generally gets the job done much quicker. Whether by displaying a pleasing tick on correctly input data or prompting users to make a few amends in real time, the user no longer needs to cross their fingers on clicking submit, as errors will already have been rectified during the data entry process.

The benefits of inline validation

  • Correct errors when users fill forms in real time – Without inline validation, users can progress through forms and submit errors unknowingly. Inline validation solutions like Loqate correct errors at point of entry, in real time.
  • Reduce ‘pogosticking’ – Pogosticking might sound fun, but in online marketing, it’s usually bad news. It is the term used to describe users who visit your webpage and then ‘bounce’ off it to return to the search engine results page (SERP). This is a common practice for eCommerce customers who find your site’s web forms too clunky to use. Pogosticking can be reduced by ensuring forms are easy, seamless and optimized for the user’s needs.
  • Minimise user confusion – One of the main reasons it can be so annoying to be returned to a form page after submission is that it’s not always clear what you, as a user, did wrong. For longer forms, this can mean you need to scroll back up the page in search of red text. Inline validation can fix this problem by dynamically responding to user submissions, letting them know if the data is correctly inputted before they move to the next field.
  • Win customer loyalty – There’s a reason companies like Amazon became so successful – they’re extremely easy and frictionless to use, offering one-click delivery to their customers. Although not every business can be an Amazon, the same customer preferences are universal. An online shop that employs inline form validation will win more repeat business than competitors with a clunky submit-and-repeat model.

Example of inline validation

Here’s an example of inline validation done right:

Here, Twitter makes use of dynamic messaging on the right-hand side of the field to alert the user to the fact they already have an account with them. They get extra points for also giving the user options to rectify the problem by logging in or recovering an existing password! By pre-empting the user's next steps and giving real-time feedback, this form is likely to achieve a high level of engagement.

The inline form validation solution for online businesses 

Installed with a few lines of code using a single API, Loqate is the all-in-one solution to delivering engaging eCommerce checkout and form fill experiences, bringing address, phone, and email validation in real-time to your web forms. Discover the key features of Loqate’s inline verification solution for addresses, phone and email, including its international coverage, single easy to implement API, location biasing, Fuzzy Matching capabilities and use of the world’s most curated global data. With Loqate, you can avoid the common pitfalls of online web forms and switch to inline validation for accurate data, customer satisfaction, and repeat business.