I fell in love with Google Forms for quite some time now. I’ve been making a good use of it in number of occations such as software borrowing register, our company seminar registration forms and even for a small lunch pack order form like this one I’ve created for my friend’s Lovo order.

create new google formLast weekend while I was changing Zatlite’s blog template, I thought of adding a contact page for him. Blogger/blogspot blogs don’t allow editing server side scripts so you can’t really add an email contact form and such but ofcos there’s always many tricks to go about. Some bloggers use Kontactr or Zoho contact form scripts. They require a registration to their site and have to put up a power by logo on your form. I’m too lazy to register so never really tried those out but chose an easier way to add a contact form on blogger using my favorite Google Forms.

Google Forms are just so easy to create and everything can be done in your google account. Here are brief steps to add a Google form as blogger contact form.

  • Go to http://docs.google.com,
  • Click New > Form (or) From Template option,
  • Enter form title and brief description, then add your form fields; make some required fields.
  • Under “See responses” button, you can check form “Summary” or “Spreadsheet” where the submitted data is stored.
  • You can grab the embedded code under “More actions” > “Embed” option or add a proper form submit confirmation message by clicking “Edit Confirmation” option.
  • Live form can be viewed by clicking the link at the bottom of the page. That’s the link you send to your friends too.
  • Create a new post, eg. “Contact me”, on your blog; choose HTML view, paste the embedded code in; publish your post.
  • If you want to move your contact post from the first page, just change the publish date to earlier dates and the post will be hidden then you can link it from your menu

edit google form
set notification rule

Once you’ve created your form, you need to know when the user submit to your form as soon as the submission is done. To do that, go to the related “Spreadsheet” by clicking “See responses” > “Spreadsheet” option from the Edit Form page or go directly from your google documents page. Click on “Share” blue button dropdownlist, click “Set notification rules” option. Set the rules as required and you are all set.

Ofcos’ the bad side of having Google form is that, you can’t style the text-boxes, the width are all the same. Well…maybe you can if you read through documentation or something but I’m too lazy to do that so may be some other time. And also it does not protect your form from spammers. There’s no CAPTCHA or nothing; hence only good to use it on small/starter blogs. Zatlite blog doesn’t have many visitors/hits yet so he won’t get much spams; and I don’t really care if he gets spams either. I’ve done my work of adding contact form, the rest is up to him. :P If you want those contact forms with CAPTCHA then try those two mentioned above.

A few more idea to make good use of Google Form is that, having a post suggestion form on your side bar or a small site survey form etc. Here is a small suggestion for Myanmar Blogs Directory blogs to make use of Google Form. Instead of letting people leave their blog links for submission in the comment form, it’s good to have a proper form to collect the blog information such, “Blog Name”, “Category”, “Blogger Name”, “Brief Description” etc. Create a nice form and embed the code in the side bar or in a new post and start collecting new blogs information in a neat excel sheet which can later easily exported into a proper database if they plan to create a searchable directory. Oh well, just my worthless 2cents.

There you have it, give it a try won’t you?. And do share your ideas/how you use google docs too.