Time for a quick test.

Should you tell users upfront what’s required in the sign-up process?

Guess which version had more completed checkouts:

  • The one with the short statement above the “Continue” Call To Action button, outlining sign-up requirements,
  • Or the one with no statement?

Version A (with a short statement, click for a full version)


Version B (no statement)


Have a look, think for a second, and scroll down to see the results.






















Winner: Version A, with the sign-up requirements upfront – had a strong impact all the way down the funnel, increasing checkout completions 15.61%, at 97% confidence.

Interestingly, adding the sign-up requirements upfront meant that less traffic clicked through the application. However, those applicants entering the funnel were more qualified leads, contributing to an overall higher completed checkout rate.

Although pre-emptively stating your qualification requirements may scare off some applicants, outlining what’s expected early on can help ensure you get the most qualified leads entering into your funnel.

In this study, providing the application requirements upfront not only helped screen for the most qualified leads. But, it also set expectations before applicants started the process. So, users could enter prepared, with the proper ID in hand.

Going in prepared likely reduced distraction. Applicants didn’t need to get up from their computer, find their wallet, rummage through it, and locate their ID — only to get distracted along the way and potentially abandon the task.

All this evidence goes to show: your visitors are more likely to complete a task if they know what’s expected before they start.


1. Set visitor expectations early on. Before visitors start your application process, tell them exactly what’s needed and expected. Clearly state your application requirements and the time commitment involved. Doing so can increase task completion, reduce visitor uncertainty, lower anxiety, remove friction — and increase conversions.

2. To get more qualified leads, be upfront. Although you may get fewer leads, you’re likely to get a higher number of qualified applicants if you’re upfront about your exact application requirements.

3. Remember: visitors are more likely to complete a task if they know what’s expected before they start.

Should you tell users upfront what’s required in the sign-up process?


PS. Did you guess correctly? I did. As did 75% of those who guessed the results. This is something I have tested and have seen working myself, so it was relatively easy for me. Some of the test results can be surprising though. More tests will follow, stay tuned.