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But First, to Prevent Spam, what is 6 plus 4?

You see it all the time. You are shopping for web services, maybe a designer or SEO company in Seattle. You land on the website of a company you do not yet know, and are offered a contact form. You are not offended by what you see, and maybe even like some of it; you see potential. You want more information, but not necessarily by giving up your contact info. Can you trust them?

That is why you are here reading the web page… to decide if you will seek to know more about them, or pass over them and keep looking for someone else. You hope that eventually, before you die of old age, you will find a promising company you are willing to trust. Someone you might hire. Someone who can deliver what you need. Someone who is affordable but high quality. So you decide to fill in the lead form.

Almost done, and it says “to prevent spam, what is 6 plus 4? (required)“.


I’ll stop here. I’ll just ask the obvious question of you, the business offering that form to that potential new customer, at that stage of the process:

Did you really want to introduce the idea of spam right at the point where this new potential customer was (finally) willing to trust you with their name, address, and phone number?

If you need anti-spam technologies for your lead gen form, hire a decent programmer or web developer. Tell them SEO consultant John Andrews sent you over, because you need a user-friendly, spam-proof contact form that is easy for the user and trackable for its conversion performance. If you don’t get good results, let me know.


  1. SEM Services wrote:

    I am vary wary of submitting my details to any site. I still receive spam emails all the time from just submitting my email address, and even worse, from submitting my home address, I receive post that I have not asked for. The worst case came when I submitted my credit card details and the site wiped my account. From now on, if it’s not a trusted site, it’s not getting my info. It’s weird though that I am happy to give my info to a trusted site. What makes it so trusted?

    Monday, September 14, 2009 at 10:07 am | Permalink
  2. Wayne A wrote:

    Very valid point. Viewers, visitors tend to be extremely fickle and you never can know whats at the back of their mind. I ran a basic test a while back and found the “Are you human” approach had a lower abandonment rate.

    Friday, September 18, 2009 at 12:08 pm | Permalink
  3. Ayaz Ullah wrote:

    If a website has a high reputation e.g. PayPal you wouldn’t hesitate to give your details etc. Most of the time I trust the top results which come up on Google for popular keywords.

    I’m used to the spam prevention, as most sites have them nowadays and I don’t think a new potential customer would hesitate as he/she knows it’s normal. However, an amatuer to the internet could be worried.

    Monday, September 21, 2009 at 1:39 pm | Permalink
  4. I have no fear to give my information to any web site. I often buy some stuffs on internet and I have had any problem.
    I have a second adress email for this and I have my private one for my friends so I have any probelem !

    Tuesday, September 22, 2009 at 1:27 am | Permalink