Gravity Forms

My Gravity Forms Subscription: To Renew Or Not?

I’m coming up on my two year anniversary for using Gravity Forms, a premium forms plugin for WordPress. I remember debating whether the plugin was worth the $199 price tag, but I finally pulled the trigger. I just got a reminder email that my year’s almost up and I need to decide whether it’s worth it to renew. The verdict?

Gravity Forms is worth every penny.

In case you’re not convinced, I wanted to share some ways I’ve used to make my life easier and my site development cycle speedier. I’ll break it down by the three available license options to give you an idea of what you can do at each level.

Personal – $39 (The Basics)

The personal plan only allows for use on a single site (but with unlimited forms).

  • Contact Form. In it’s simplest use (i.e. no fancy footwork required), Gravity Forms makes great a contact form. Every website needs one and while there are some decent free options out there (Contact Form 7 and Fast Secure Contact Form), Gravity Forms offers me the benefit of familiarity. I’ve used it on every site I’ve rolled out this past year and can set up a contact form with my eyes closed at this point.
  • User Interface. The drag and drop UI and clean admin panels make Gravity Forms more intuitive to use than the freebie form plugins.
  • Auto Responders. In addition to browser confirmation that a form’s been submitted, I can shoot out a personalized auto-response to the sender. Trust me, it’s a nice touch.
  • Captcha. I hate Captcha, but I’ve been required to use it a couple of times. It’s really simple to add with Gravity Forms.
  • Conversions. Wonder how your forms are converting? Each form shows the number of views and entries and divides that to show your conversion rate.
Gravity Forms overview

Example of forms overview showing views, entries, and conversion rates.

Business – $99 (The Goodies)

Things are getting fun at this point. The Basic Form Add-Ons included with the Business license are where Gravity Forms SHINES LIKE THE NOON-DAY SUN!

  • Newsletter Subscriptions. Tack on support for Aweber, MailChimp, or Campaign Monitor with just an API key. It’s as easy as creating a form and linking it to a subscriber list. I’ve never used Campaign Monitor, but I’ve done multiple integrations with Aweber and MailChimp and it’s a breeze. (Sidebar: there’s a third-party plugin for Constant Contact I’ve used a few times. It’s cumbersome and conflict-prone, which may say more about the Constant Contact API than that plugin – I don’t know). Anyhow, using Gravity Forms to create an email opt-in form is ridiculous easy.
  • Populate fields dynamically. There are tons of great applications for this. Most recently I used it on a real-estate site to auto-populate the email subject line with the property address. (Here’s a tutorial if you’d like to see how I did it)

    Dynamic Field Populate

    Example of a field dynamically populated via a GF filter.

  • Custom Post Types. Are you ready to blow your mind? This is one of my favorite ways to use Gravity Forms. Install a plugin called Gravity Forms + Custom Post Types (descriptive, eh?) and you can map your form to a post type. YES! You can populate form fields from a taxonomy and even CREATE a new post via a form entry. If you want more details, here’s a post on using Gravity Forms with custom post types.

Developer – $199 (The Works)

All the goodness of the Basic Add-ons plus the Advanced Add-ons. Prepare to have your socks knocked clean off.

  • Unlimited. Unlimited use on unlimited sites. This is the license for me.
  • Payment Integration. Hook up forms to Freshbooks, Authorize.net, Paypal Standard, and Paypal Pro.  Setting up payment on a site can be a pain, but the payment add-ons with Gravity Forms have saved my sanity (and my time).
  • User Registration. This is cool. You can automatically register a new WordPress user on form submission (you can even hook it up to PayPal and wait to create the user until payment is confirmed). This add-on also works with BuddyPress and Multi-Site, though I haven’t had a chance to try out those options yet.
  • Polls, quizes, and surveys (oh my!). No need to waste time researching the best survey plugins. With Gravity Forms I can interact with users to collect and analyze information.
  • And Beyond. Gravity Forms is nicely documented and wide open to developer customizations via hooks and filters. If the available add-ons aren’t enough, you can code to infinity.

Is Gravity Forms Right for You?

I can’t answer that, but I can tell you it’s been an invaluable tool in my WordPress toolbox. I might even say it’s my MVP (Most Valuable Plugin).

In my opinion, don’t spend your money on the Personal license. Go big or go free at that level. The Business license is fantastic, but only supports three sites, which is too limited if you’re making websites professionally. That leaves the Developer license. Do yourself a favor and splurge. What you spend you’ll more than recover in time saved.

Review the licenses / Buy Gravity Forms

I’m an affiliate for Gravity Forms, which means I get a small commission if you purchase it through the links on this site. I didn’t receive any compensation for this article – I wrote it because I believe it’s a great product.

Carrie Dils

I’m a recommended Genesis Developer with 15+ years experience in web design and development. I'm creative, resourceful, and ready to put my mind to your project. Want to discuss your WordPress project? Let's talk!

Comments

  1. says

    Definitely agree.

    Gravity Forms has consistently been part of our standard plugins we install with every site created. I’ve had a subscription for a little over three years. It’s been rock solid and I’ve used it to help with eCommerce forms, membership sites, landing pages, etc… I love the honeypot feature to keep spammers out. That’s worth it’s weight in gold. If things get super spammy I can even bring in Akismet (use wisely…). Because of the honeypot and Akismet, I have yet to need the CAPTCHA feature.

    I did have a surprise this year, and had a few sites hacked that were running Gravity Forms. Unfortunately, I didn’t update the plugin soon enough, and with the popularity of Gravity Forms we were also a target. Of course, I was quite irritated this happened and wrote support to see what kind of security measures they had taken to harden up the plugin. I got a very thorough reply that stated Gravity Forms is very up front about security issues and discloses them so that the community can respond. Gravity Forms also does regular code audits that are performed by a Acunetix (3rd party company). After that support email, my irritation turned to awe at how diligent the folks at Gravity Forms are about making sure the plugin is professionally maintained.

    Although I rarely use it, their support is awesome. A few months back, they saved my bacon with a weird issue that was happening on an eCommerce site and emailed me back at all sorts of weird hours. Because of that I was able to fix the issue in one day. The client was gushing, and so am I. Thanks Gravity Forms!

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