Originally Posted by octopusapp
This is an excellent idea!
Reducing the barriers between you and your customers is always going to have a positive result. Lots of people might already be on your website looking up your contact information — many of them might find it easier and more convenient to just fill out a webform instead of pick up the phone and call. You also potentially end up with better, more complete information from your new potential customer, and it's permanently recorded automatically, instead of you having to stop what you're doing, find a pen and scribble out some notes.
WuFoo is another great service that does really nice web-forms. Check it out at www.wufoo.com
You are exactly right! I have noticed that most people surf the net not during the 7am to 6pm that we are working, but actually in the late evening and into night. Most people wouldn't feel comfortable calling a landscaper at 9:00pm nor do we really want them to. The online estimate request form provides them to still give detailed information on what they want done or serviced but at any time of the day. This allows them to take action now rather than waiting till the next morning to call during operation hours.
Your also right when it keeps a permanent record of everything they complete on the form. JotForm allows you to create printable reports and can even show me a pie chart breaking down which services people want estimates for by percentages.
I looked at WuFoo but to be honest, I think JotForm is wayy better and has more to offer and it is COMPLETLY free with no branding.
Give it a try and you WILL see results!