Paper forms are freeform. They can be whatever you want: Rows and rows of questions and answers, or something more creative with text and illustrations interspersed between questions. They're flexible—that is, flexible to look however you want. The trouble comes when you have to distribute your forms and gather the responses.
Digital forms win out in those aspects. They may look like the '90's, and they might not let you make that flexible of a form, but you can share them with a click and watch the answers roll in automatically. Throw in some automations, and your forms can be the center of your business.
Then, there's a new app on the block: Paperform. It's a form app with all of their advantages, yet it's a bit more like a freeform paper form than your average online form. Fill out a Paperform form, and you might not even think of it as a form. It might look more like a landing page, a shopping cart, or a fill-in-the-blank story. Or it might look like a form—it's whatever you need it to be.
You'll start your form out with a template, which in Paperform include images, text, and form fields to give you an idea of how you could make a more unique form. Select an image to add in your own, or click the text to format and add your own details. Everything feels a bit more like a document editor than a form editor. The text blocks include alignment and heading options along with options to add lists or links, while images can be full-width or aligned with your text much like pictures in a Medium blog post.
Add new rows to your form just by pressing return on your keyboard, as you would when writing any other document. Don't need more text? Hover your mouse over the left side of the form, and you'll see options to make this row a question (what Paperform calls form fields) or to add a video or image. With form fields, you'll add a question and help text to prompt the answer your want. On the right, you can choose what type of question you need: A text response, email or link, yes/no answer, number, a value like a phone number, date, or country, or standard form options like dropdown, scale, multiple choice, and file upload. Each one comes with its options, which you'll uncover with the gear button on the right side of the question. It's similar to Google Forms' editor, with a single line of questions and quick options to customize them—only here, you can also add text and media to make your form stand out.
And, you can add products—one of Paperform's best features. On the lower part of the question type menu, you can choose to add product, price, and subscription fields to your form. Those, via Stripe, Braintree, or PayPal payment processing, can let you create an order form with product listings and payments. It's a simple way to build a full landing page for your site, complete with a checkout form for your customers.
Customizing your Paperform design is easy, too. You can start from one of the pre-made templates, then tweak the colors the way you want and select any of the Google Fonts typefaces for your form. Bring in your own photos and media, and your forms will look just like your company's style. You'll be able to easily recognize each form on your Paperform landing page with a header image you can add, along with tags to help you sort your forms. And once you have a form you like, you can copy it to use that style again without starting over.
Paperform gives you a more flexible online form, one that feels like anything you want it to: A custom website, a paper form, or a standard online shopping cart. It's a new way to make your forms look a bit nicer, a bit friendlier, a bit more likely to get filled out.