RT Cunningham


Formspree - An Alternative to Google Forms that I Really Like

Formspree forms Formspree doesn’t create forms, they process them. That means it works great on completely static websites. So does Google Forms.

The reason I started using Google Forms first was because I couldn’t find a better alternative. Well, I found one when I wasn’t looking for one. I followed a link from somewhere and I don’t remember where (as usual). It probably came up in a search as a result for something else I searched for.

Formspree doesn’t Create Forms

While this is true, they give you the required ingredients to create your own. I created mine like so:

  .themeform input { width:100%; }
  .themeform textarea { height:200px; width:100%; }
<form class="themeform" action="" method="post">
  <label for="name">Name:</label>
  <input type="text" name="name" placeholder="Your name" required>
  <label for="email">Email:</label>
  <input type="email" name="_replyto" placeholder="Your email" required>
  <label for="message">Message:</label>
  <textarea name="message" placeholder="Your message" required></textarea>
  <button type="submit" id="submit">Send</button>
  <input type="hidden" name="_format" value="plain">
  <input type="hidden" name="_subject" value="New Contact Message">

I inserted it in a new page template. I could have as easily used a WordPress shortcode. The “themeform” class already exists in my theme. I couldn’t see adding another class just for this.

The Formspree website is pretty straightforward. You have to create your form and then use it once to register your e-mail address for that specific URL.

It isn’t Perfect, of course

When you fill out the form and click send, you’re taken to an intermediary page where you have to click the CAPTCHA. It then returns you to the original page. That is, unless you use the “_next” name variable to send it to a thank you page or something.

It’s also limited to 1000 messages to your e-mail address every month. If you’re more popular than that, then you should pay for a gold account. Most people aren’t.

It isn’t a perfect solution but it’s almost perfect and that’s good enough for me. Google Forms are good enough, but I find them cumbersome.

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By RT Cunningham
May 27, 2017
Web Development