Today I saw a familiar pattern on a website for an analytics product. The home page pitched the product, and then above the signup form there was a headline: “Sign up in seconds.”

I see this all the time on signup forms and it makes me wonder: why did the designer put that there? My best guess is that they were trying to relieve some anxiety the customer might have. Like, “don’t worry, it’ll be over soon!”

I’ll bet that the time-to-signup isn’t an important anxiety factor. When’s the last time you shopped for a software product under intense time pressure, where every second counts?

When I evaluate web products I often feel uncertain about what will happen after the quick signup. Sure it takes seconds to create an account, but then what?

I had an idea to address this uncertainty. You could preview the workflow steps that come after the signup so it’s clear how much of a gap there is between signing up and getting value out of the product.

Check out this sketch. It shows “what happens” after you signup. Once you sign up, you get a Javascript code, paste it into your website, and then you can watch real live graphics of traffic come to your website. Sounds pretty easy right? Why not try it?

I haven’t tested this approach on any sites. Intuitively I like how it integrates the call to action with the sales pitch in a single flow. What do you think?