It is very much necessary to have a feedback from the users of your website and also to understand their requirements to provide a better overall experience on your website. To facilitate this kind of a communication a contact form is necessary. You can also provide contact details but having a contact form in the website is considered to be a better way of communication to avoid any kind of shortages in the former. Contact Form 7 is a WordPress plugin which facilitates such communication between the site user and the owner. This plugin can handle multiple contact forms. It supports AJAX submitting, CAPTCHA, Akismet spam filtering and file uploading.
Contact Form 7 can be installed just like any other WordPress plugin. You can directly download it from the plugins section in the WordPress admin for free. After the installation process you need to activate the plugin. After installing and activating a menu named contact will be displayed in the admin interface.
Contact Form 7 has a good set of features, which allow the following course of actions:
- Define the right to change the code so that the access is restricted.
- Change the default posting for certain mails.
- Displays forms in English by default but facilitates translation into 40+ languages.
- Customize event messages.
- Edit mail templates i.e., both the message body as well as the message header fields.
- Insert CAPTCHA.
- Add Akismet protection to the form to filter spam from your form submissions.
- Style Contact Form using Contact Form 7 style plugins.
- Customize submit button.
Working with Contact Form 7
You can see two panels when you work on creating a new contact form. In the right panel you will have different elements that you can add to your contact form while in the left panel you can see the mark up of the form. Just below the panels you will have the editing part for emails through which you can send a confirmation message to the sender that you have received their message and also be notified whenever you get a message. You can customize your contact forms by clicking on contact > edit and adding the required fields.
Tracking Form Submissions
You can track your contact form submission details by using certain special tags in the body of your message. You can track details like from which page the form was submitted, the author details, the IP address of the system etc. You can place special tags which in the message body or in any field of your mail, and the tags will get replaced with the information when your contact form is submitted. Some of the special tags are listed below, also indicating the details with which they would be replaced:
- [_post_url]: permalink of the post which contains the URL.
- [_date]: Date of Submission.
- [_remote_ip]: Sender’s client IP address.
- [_post_title]: Title of the post containing Contact Form.
- [_post_name]: Name of the post containing Contact Form.
- [_post_author]: Author name of the post containing Contact Form.
- [_post_id]: ID of the post containing of the Contact Form.
- [_user_agent]: Senders user agent information.
- [_url]: URL of the Contact Form.
- [_time]: Time of submission.
- [_post _author_email]: Author email of the post containing the Contact Form.
Contact Form 7 has different tag types which can be used while creating a form. Some of the tag types are discussed as follows:
- Text Fields: Contact Form 7 supports both the types of text input fields namely single line input and multi line input. In CF7’s convention all fields marked with an asterisk(*) mean that they are required or are necessary fields.
- Checkboxes, Radio Buttons and Menus: Contact Form 7 provides different kinds of tags to refer checkboxes, radio buttons and menus. There is no radio* field as it is a required field by nature.
- File uploading and Attachment: Contact Form 7 provides with form tags to upload files. After uploading the files, they are attached to the mail to be sent. Contact Form 7 defines the file type and file size by default if the same are set manually.
- CAPTCHA: Contact Form 7 allows you to insert CAPTCHA to prevent robots from submitting the forms.
- Quiz: You can use CAPTCHA to distinguish from the manual and bot submissions of forms. But in cases where people dislike using CAPTCHA you can generate a question/answer format to identify the true submissions.
- Acceptance checkbox: You can place an acceptance checkbox to submit the form when you want the users to accept certain terms and condition.
- Submit Button: It is an essential component of the contact form.
Contact Form 7 is a very useful and simple to use free plugin for WordPress. You can place it into any page or post with ease. WordPress hosting is made easy with GreenGeeks, check out our WordPress hosting options here.