Using Gravity Forms on GV

This guide will only be interesting to users that administrate a WordPress site for Global Voices, like Lingua site managers and special project managers. It explains how to use the Gravity Forms plugin to create any kind of form you need and track the entries in /wp-admin/.

What is Gravity Forms?

Our first project with Gravity Forms was the Rising Voices Microgrants platform, where we used it to accept project proposals. Now we're using it for author and translator application forms, letting us manage applications from inside WordPress rather than Google Drive.

Gravity Forms are created and managed in the wp-admin > Forms menu, which has choices to see a list of all Forms, add a New Form and view Entries (submissions).

Not everyone can access the Forms menus, depending on your “role” (usually “author”). If you are an “editor” or higher you should be able to access Forms and see the “Add Form” button in the Visual editor.

Forms Still missing? If you are an admin user and still can't see the Forms menu in the WordPress sidebar you should make sure the Gravity Forms plugin is enabled in the Plugins menu.

Creating a Gravity Form

  • In wp-admin go to Forms > New Form.
  • Choose a title and description (these can optionally be shown with your form).
  • Add fields for your questions from Standard Fields and Advanced Fields on the right.
  • Edit the content of each question by clicking on it in the preview on the left.
  • Click Update Form to save.
  • Click on Form Settings at the top of the form editor.
  • Click on Confirmations in the left sidebar.
  • Edit the Default Confirmation to be the message users should see after submitting the form.
  • Click on Notifications in the left sidebar (Form Settings > Notifications).
  • Edit the Admin Notification to be sent to the appropriate people and in a useful format.

Embedding a form in a post or page

Once created, forms are embedded in a post using the post editor, similar to how images are inserted.

  • Open the post in wp-admin
  • Click the Add Form button next to Add Media.
  • Choose the form you just created (save/reload the post after creating the form to refresh the list).
  • Choose whether you want to Display form title and Display form description.
  • Use Advanced Options if needed.
  • Click Insert Form.

Reviewing form entries

Each submission of the form is tracked and you can review them sort of like comments in the Gravity Forms admin.

  • Go to wp-admin > Forms
  • Click on the form who's entries you want to view.
  • Click on Entries at the top.
  • Choose a submission from the list to view it's details.

There are many tools for managing entries that you can explore:

  • Read/unread status (and Mark unread button) to track whether someone has reviewed the submission.
  • Notes box on the entry screen, which lets you comment on the submission similar to how Edit Flow works.
  • Notifications box where you can resend notifications and include your notes.

Polls powered by Gravity Forms

The Polls add-on allows a special kind of form which behaves as a poll. If you add a Poll question into a form and insert it correctly in your post users will be able to answer the question and immediately be shown the results so far.

To insert a poll in your post you need to first create it in Gravity Forms, configure it's confirmations and notifications, then insert it's shortcode. For more detailed information see the Gravity Forms documentation about Polls.

Creating a poll form

  • In wp-admin go to Forms > New Form.
  • Choose a title and description (include “Poll” for clarity)
  • You are now looking at a generic form, you need to add a poll into it.
  • Find Advanced Fields in the sidebar.
  • Click Poll (polls are a type of “field”).
  • Click your new poll question on the left to edit.
  • Edit the options in the Choices section of the poll widget.
  • Click on Form Settings at the top of the form editor.
  • Click on Confirmations in the left sidebar.
  • Edit the Default Confirmation so it's a message for someone who answered your poll question.
  • Click on Notifications in the left sidebar (Form Settings > Notifications).
  • Edit the Admin Notification to be sent to the appropriate person or to no one (since it's just poll answers).
  • Still in the Form Settings area click on Polls in the left sidebar.
  • Edit the Block Repeat Voters settings to taste.

Inserting a poll in a post

Polls are inserted in posts like other forms, but need several Advanced Options to work properly

  • Open the post in wp-admin
  • Click the Add Form button next to Add Media.
  • Choose the form you just created (save/reload the post after creating the form to refresh the list).
  • Choose whether you want to Display form title and Display form description.
  • Click Advanced Options
  • Set the Action pulldown to Polls to show more poll options.
  • Click Insert Form.

The poll will now show wherever the [gravityform] shortcode is in your post. If users submit a response the page will reload and the results will show instead of the questions.