While you probably have a good idea of what you want visitors to do when they’re on your website – something specific like buy a product or sign up for your newsletter – you still also want those people to be able to contact you directly if they have any questions. Having a separate contact form on your website is good way to facilitate this communication.
Posting your email address will certainly allow visitors to contact you, but you will also open yourself up to receiving a large amount of spam. There are automated tools that scan websites for any and every e-mail addresses that they can collect. Having a contact form can save you time, as well as make your visitors feel like you’re being responsive to their needs. To help you when choosing a contact form solution I have provided an overview of three contact form solutions below.
Gravity Forms is my go to form solution for WordPress websites. While there is no free version of Gravity Forms, the plug-in allows you to do significantly more on your website then just contact forms. For example, one of the main features of Gravity Forms is its “form builder.” This allows you to create various types of forms, including multipage forms, contest entry forms, order forms for product purchases and more. In addition, both paid versions of Gravity Forms include access to add-ons that let you integrate your forms with e-mail campaign management software, accounting software and even PayPal payment services.
While doing research for a client project I stumbled upon the Formidable WordPress Form plug-in. Formidable comes in several different versions, one of which is free. With the free version you’ll be able to set up basic contact forms as well as submission forms that you can use for other tasks throughout your website. With the free version you can build forms using six basic fields (single line text, paragraph text, checkboxes, radio buttons, drop-down list and a reCAPTCHA verification). Formidable Pro however, gives you the ability to use significantly more field types, customize the visual “look and feel” of each form, and allow you to use various add-ons to tie your forms into e-mail list management tools, CRM (customer relationship management) tools and PayPal tools. I will admit that Formidable is similar to Gravity Forms in many aspects but Formidable goes a step further with its reporting and graphing capabilities.
Contact Form 7
If you are certain you only want a contact form solution, and have no need for any of the more powerful tools offered by Formidable and Gravity Forms, then you might want to consider the free Contact Form 7 plug-in. While there are certainly ways to customize forms Contact Form 7, its greatest strength is its simplicity.
Choosing A Contact Form
The most important thing to consider when choosing a contact form solution for your website is that it meets your needs. The plug-ins above are very easy to use with some practice, but you still need to go through the necessary steps to install, configure and customize them for your website.