Karl Hughes
14 Alternatives to Google Forms

14 Alternatives to Google Forms

I’ve been using Google Forms for over a decade, and it has continued to impress me with new features, improved design, and more flexibility every year. Coupled with automation tools like Zapier or n8n.io, there’s not a lot you can’t do with Google Forms.

That said, it’s 2020 and there are plenty of alternatives to Google Forms that might work better for your startup. Depending on what you want to do, one of these Google Forms competitors might finally get you to change the way you collect surveys and user input.

Why Replace Google Forms?

If Google Forms are working for you, then great. No need to fix what isn’t broken. That said, there are a lot of good reasons to seek an alternative. For example, what if you want to customize the styling on your forms? Google Forms gives you very limited options for this.

Another reason you might want to explore an alternative to Google Forms is to add payment processing to your user input. I’ve used several of the options below to take payments and then automatically email receipts to users. This makes your forms much more useful in a business or side project.

You may be concerned with limiting access to your forms. Google Forms allow you to give access to specific GMail accounts, but you can’t add username and password access or team-based permissions to your forms.

Finally, you may want a deeper integration between your form and your website. For example, if you’re using WordPress, you can’t feed Google Form data into your website without a third-party tool. Many of the options below are built for WordPress, so integrating with your CMS is much easier.

Google Forms Alternatives

Wufoo

Wufoo form builder

When I need more features or to accept payments, Wufoo is my go-to form builder. It costs a few bucks per month, but with that you can collect thousands of responses, connect with Stripe and other payment systems, and still get integrations with Zapier and other services.

Wufoo also allows you to customize the look of your forms with custom CSS styling. This means your Wufoo forms can integrate seamlessly into your website, making them great for adding interactivity to a static site.

Airtable

Airtable database and form builder

While not exclusively a form creator, Airtable’s input tool is very powerful, especially when combined with its database-like storage system and new automations. While it doesn’t include as many options for custom styles, you can still embed the forms and they work well on mobile devices.

Airtable is easy to set up, data can be viewed in multiple ways, the sharing settings are flexible, and you can use it to power your API. Once you learn Airtable, it’s hard to imagine going back to a spreadsheet again.

Formidable Forms

Formidable Forms WordPress plugin

If your site is built on WordPress, check out the Formidable Forms plugin. They have both a free and paid level of support, so if you’re not technical and need a little help integrating it, they can help you make it happen.

Formidable’s drag-and-drop builder supports a wide range of input types like calculators and payment forms, and the forms can be customized with your own styles. The plugin also includes hooks so you can react to form submissions in your WordPress application or build your own custom plugins on top of it.

Typeform

Typeform form creation tool

Typeform has a unique and visually appealing style. Because they offer a comprehensive API, you can embed Typeform forms into your website, pull data from form responses, and connect with third-party automation tools. They also offer team-based permissions on their paid plans.

NinjaForms

NinjaForms

NinjaForms is another option for WordPress-based sites that need to handle user input. It’s especially good for non-technical users who want a simple drag-and-drop interface that accepts payments and user email addresses securely. They support PayPal or Stripe for payments and integrate with all the major email providers for collecting subscribers.

SurveyMonkey

SurveyMonkey form builder

It’s not quite as open-ended as Google Forms, but SurveyMonkey is decidedly better for capturing user, employee, or customer feedback and making sense of the results. Many of the features are similar to other form builders, and you can get started building surveys with up to 10 questions for free.

Formspree

Formspree simple form builder

It may seem like Formspree offers less than Google Forms, but its simplicity is also its power. You can drop a few lines of code from Formspree into your website and immediately start getting responses emailed to you for free. Best of all, the form can be fully customized (using code) to match your site’s styling exactly.

JotForm

JotForm form builder

JotForm gives you hundreds of themes and templates to make sure your forms stand out and match your branding. Their paid plans also include HIPAA Compliance, so if you’re in a healthcare setting, you may want to check out JotForm.

Formsite

Formsite form builder

Formsite rides the border between form builder and full-on web application creator. You can set up payments, complex data workflows, and embed the forms on your website or landing page.

CaptainForm

CaptainForm WordPress form editor

With a drag-and-drop editor, 30 great templates, and deep data integration options, CaptainForm is another great WordPress-based option for your forms. It also supports Captcha and includes a free plan so you can try it out without the financial commitment.

CognitoForms

CognitoForms

Cognito’s builder allows you to take payments for a percentage of sales rather than a monthly fee, so it could be great in situations where your revenue is uncertain. I started using CognitoForms in a project last year, and it’s made collecting occasional payments significantly easier.

Formstack

Formstack

With a relatively high price point, Formstack definitely falls on the premium end of the alternatives to Google Forms. That said, you get what you pay for. They have a massive integration library, hundreds of templates, and lots of examples of forms built for different goals and industries.

Appenate

Appenate app builder and forms

If you’ve outgrown forms entirely and you need something a little more robust, check out Appenate. It’s a no-code platform for building internal applications that can be accessed over the web.

Paperform

Paperform

Paperform is perfect for creating bespoke forms and landing pages. You can leverage more than 20 data-collection fields, accept payments, and even manage your product inventory. If you’re looking to move your Google forms elsewhere, you can use Paperform’s importer to preview how they’d look.

WPForms

WPForms

As one of the most popular paid WordPress plugins available, WPForms is worth considering if your site is built on WordPress. Like other options on this list, it includes custom hooks, filters, and styling so your forms fit your design and data needs.

Note: This post was originally published in 2018, but was updated with new options and more details in November 2020.

Read more like this in Startups