Forms are used for anything … from capturing emails to registrations to filling out applications, to making requests or running surveys or polls.
Forms are created by form builders. There are quite a few form applications on the web available that let you create beautiful and extraordinary online forms. Well-known form builders are Wufoo, TypeForm, FormStack, SurveyMonkey, Google Form or JotForm.
Their features vary with their pricing structure, but some really stand out.
➠ Typeform stands out because of its capability of creating unique form backgrounds and flows.
➠ JotForm is a form builder I appreciate a lot. A second form creator with a similar feature set like JotForm is nowhere seen, far or near. I cannot think of a form that cannot be created with the feature palette or apps that JotForm offers. (Hint!)
➠ Google Forms is another form builder that is popular in the web community. It’s by far not as sophisticated as JotForm and it lacks the design capabilities that Typeform comes with, but it is an entirely free tool. It is included in the tools that come with a Google Mail account. Hence, all you have to do is to secure yourself an email address with Gmail.
Features Of Google Forms
If you know your way around the Google platform, there are a few hidden features that can make a Google Form very valuable.
Because Google Form is completely free to use, there aren’t any hidden features that are only accessible with a paid plan.
Many form builders allow only to collect a limited number of responses in its free plan. Google Forms accepts unlimited responses. Submissions to the form are collected in a spreadsheet in your Google Drive.
By default, the creator or owner of a Google Form is not automatically notified when a submission to the form is being made. I always thought that’s a disadvantage of Google Forms – until I found out how to do it.
How To Set Up An Email Notification In Google Forms
Before I figured out how I can set up an alert of new submissions to a form, I manually had to check the spreadsheet that collects the form’s entries. Not fun. I didn’t want to spend my time like this.
But … it’s actually quite easy to set up an automated notification that shows up as an email in your inbox.
Go to the spreadsheet that collects your form’s responses, and choose Tools / Notification rules.
Select the option that says “Notify me at … when … a user submits a form”.
You can also set up the frequency for these notifications. Receiving an email right away is a good option in smaller surveys. But with mass polls or surveys, you might be better off with the daily digest feature.
When You Need More Than Just A Notification
What I just introduced to you was how to set up a notification in Google Forms. The form’s data are actually not submitted with the notification.
All that you will receive is an email stating that a new submission has been made.
However, if regularly checking back your response spreadsheet to stay up-to-date on your forms submissions doesn’t sound good to you, there is a way to get this information delivered. In my next article I will show you include a Google Form in an automated workflow, thus saving you precious time you’d otherwise spend with checking submissions back and forth.
Such a step could be the missing link to automate some of your internal processes and save you time and money in your business.
If you are looking for a shortcut to access the spreadsheet quickly for scanning the submission’s content … just bookmark the file in your browser and place the bookmark in your browser’s toolbar!
- Now you only have to log into your Google account to be able to access the file in a second.