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Gravity Forms Review: Easy, Attractive WordPress Forms
While there is little doubt that WordPress is a very amazing piece of software, there is a problem that many will eventually run into: creating forms. Forms may seem a little outdated in a world where responses are delivered nearly instantly via e-mails, Skype calls, Tweets, and SMS messages, but there are still plenty of uses for good old fashioned forms. This is where Gravity Forms aims to enter the picture.
This is Heavy Man!
Before getting into the good points of Gravity Form, and there are a handful, it really is worth pointing out that the entire idea of forms on blogs really ought to be limited. It is easy to set up contact forms, feedback, and so on, but in a day and age where instant gratification are the name of the game, this approach is far from ideal. Still, there are some very valid uses for forms, and Gravity Forms has them all covered, at least all the ones that come to mind after an extensive brainstorming session.
Getting Back Down to Earth
The best way to illustrate the value of Gravity Forms is probably with a real world example. In this example, Bob has just set up a company called Bob Co. complete with a blog to help attract attention to his offerings. Almost immediately, he sees the need to allow feedback on his posts, so he uses Gravity Forms to set up a basic feedback form. Soon he realizes that feedback is an opportunity and decides to start using conditional form fields, such as the ability to offer a rating only if a viewer supplies what looks like a valid e-mail address. As time goes on, Bob Co. continues to grow, and its needs expand. Soon Bob is using Gravity Forms to start intelligently routing where form results are e-mailed to, and starts gathering a lot more data than he used to. Now forms can start with basic demographic information and populate fields and menus conditionally, such as a list of cities in a state or e-mail addresses at a large company. Bob is seeing the value of Gravity Forms because the alternative would be to either let contact opportunities and community participation and involvement slip through his grasp or simply leave an e-mail link where it could be scraped and just wait for the spam to start pouring in.
Gravity is Now Officially 9.8 Feet-ures Per Second Squared?
The hardest part about writing a review on Gravity Forms is picking the best part of what is ultimately a very specialized piece of software. The intuitive user interface is well executed and looks like it should be a core component of WordPress, it is that well done. On the other hand, the fact is that prior to writing this review a rather extensive list of 63 form needs and wants was drawn up to see if Gravity Forms had what it takes. While 63 might not sound like a lot, try making such a list sometime and then it should be very apparent why Gravity Forms is so impressive; it not only met all of the needs but pointed out a few that were not even on the list.
There are also add-ons available to further enhance the utility of Gravity Forms. A campaign monitor and e-mail integration are currently at the top of the charts, but there is also an invoicing option. The add-ons is a really interesting concept, considering that Gravity Forms is itself a WordPress add-on of sorts. Still, there is no arguing that extended flexibility is a good idea on many levels, and it will be interesting to see here Gravity Forms goes with this particular idea.
Pricing Is Not a Black Hole
There are three different Gravity Forms pricing plans to meet the needs of different types of operators. Single site bloggers can buy a single site support license for $39.99, while a 5-site Multi Site license costs only $99. For larger organizations managing several properties, a $199 Developer option covers unlimited sites, and that is a true bargain considering the price of even a single site. Additionally, free add-ons, campaign monitor integration, MailChimp integration, and priority support come with the unlimited Developer licensing option but are available for independent purchase with other plans. For those who want to give Gravity Forms a test drive, check out the official Gravity Forms demo. While it does not have all features enabled, it should certainly help one come to a more informed decision. That being said, the pricing of Gravity Forms is so reasonable that it would be hard not to give Gravity Forms two thumbs up.