Yesterday, Luke Wroblewski – Chief design architect at Yahoo! – wrote a blog post singing the praises of audiosharing site Huffduffer. But it wasn’t Huffduffer’s service that got Luke W animated, so much as their sign-up page.
While most sites use a standard form with text-boxes and radio buttons for new sign-ups, Huffduffer presents its questions as a ‘Mad Lib’ style statement…
“I would like to use Huffduffer. I want my username to be _____________ and I want my password to be _____________. My email address is _________. By the way, my name is ______________ and my website is ___________.”
…which is kinda neat.
But Luke, being a ‘chief design architect’ (one of the world’s more tautological job titles), wanted to find out more. Specifically, he wanted to know if this style of form actually encourages more people to sign up than the usual Name: ___________ / Email address: __________ format. So he persuaded Ron Kurti at Vast.com to do some A/B testing and, whaddya know?, it turns out the conversational fill-in-the-blanks form increased conversion by 25-40%.
Given those impressive numbers it’s a cast iron certainty that in the next few months dozens of sites, starting probably with Yahoo!, will consider upgrading their sign-up pages to this new, friendlier format. The trick, of course, will be to get the wording just right – to customize each sign-up page for the site’s particular audience.
…which has given me an idea for a ‘fun’ weekend contest! Hurrah!
Your challenge is this: suggest some Mad Lib-style wording for the sign up page of your favourite web 2.0 site. The funnier the better. Post your entry in the comments and his time next week I’ll pick the funniest (say) three and award some excellent prizes.
Prizes that will include (but are not limited to): fame, recognition of your brilliance and whatever crap I can find in my hotel room – a signed copy of my eBay-auction-winning book, a TechCrunch tshirt and maybe one of those little bottles of shampoo you get.
Here are some examples off the top of my head to inspire you. Yours should be better…
“I do everything Oprah tells me to do so I’d like to use Twitter for three days. I’d like my username to be __________ and my password to be ‘password123′, or the name of my dog which is ______________. Please autofollow me to Oprah, Ellen Degeneres and Taylor Swift.”
“My name is ___________ and I would like to sign up to use Gmail/Google Buzz. The name of the person I am secretly having an affair with is ___________ and my social security number is _______________. Please display this information on my public profile.”
“LOL!!!! My n@me is ____________ & I wanna join yutube becos this video sukkkssss!! I think _____________ is GAAY!!! LOLLZ”
“My name is ______________ and joining Livejournal is my only hope of getting anyone to read my poetry. My birthstone is ____________ and my current mood is _____________ and lonely. No one understands me. I hate my life.”
“My name is ____________ and due to some kind of administrative error I would like to join MySpace.”