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Should I use the “autocompletetype” attribute on my web forms?

Should I use the “autocompletetype” attribute on my web forms? - answered by Matt Cutts

Matt's answer:

MATT CUTTS: Bonjour. Today’s question is about auto complete. The question is can you explain a little bit about the proposed autocompletetype attribute? Is this something I should add on my web forms? Great question. So what is auto complete, and how do we use it– autocompletetype, specifically? So the basic idea is lots of websites have forms. You type in your name– your first name, your last name, your address, your street address, your postal code, all this sort of stuff, and it’s a real pain to fill out those forms. If you’re a business owner or a publisher, the easier you can make it to fill out those forms the more likely it is that people will do purchases or sign up for your newsletter or whatever it is that you’re interested in. So it’s highly recommended that you make it easy for people to fill out those forms. OK. So how can you make it easier for people to fill out these forms? Well, you take your existing web form, and Google Chrome– hopefully, other browsers will pick this up as well– has proposed a standard called autocompletetype. So you can say autocompletetype is street address. It doesn’t change your form elements– your variables are still the same, so you’re only adding. It’s not as if any of your forms are going to break. But by annotating your forms with the correct type of thing that you expect people to fill in with the browser’s auto complete, Chrome will know exactly how to fill out your forms. So if a Chrome user comes on your page, they want to buy something, and they start to type something in, then they can just see the option to autocomplete. And when they type in that first field all of the fields will get filled. So it’s just a tiny amount of work. It just annotates your web form. It makes it a little bit more semantically understandable in some sense. And as a result, users will whisk right through your form. They’ll be able to sign up for your newsletter, purchase, whatever it is you want them to do. So I would highly recommend that you do this. I really can’t see any downside, and I hate filling out forms just like everybody else on the web does. So if you can find a way to do this, just take a little bit of time. I think you’ll find it really rewarding. In fact, when I can automatically fill out a form, I have to say it completes me.

by Matt Cutts - Google's Head of Search Quality Team


Original video: