Whether you need just a simple contact form on your website or something more advanced such as a multi-page form or survey, the best way to do it is to use a form builder plugin. In this article, I will be pitching WPForms vs. Gravity Forms, which are two of the most popular ones currently available.
WPForms vs. Gravity Forms: Feature Comparison
Features-wise, both WPForms and Gravity Forms share plenty of commonalities when it comes to core functions, and it is only with some of the more specialized things that differences occur.
Here is an overview comparing several of the key features of each:
|Free plan available||✔️||❌|
|Drag and drop form builder||✔️||✔️|
|Save and continue (visitors can resume form completion later)||✔️||✔️|
|Abandoned form recovery||✔️||❌ but possible using conditional logic|
|Form templates||Extensive library of built-in ones||Limited library of downloadable ones|
|Date picker field (e.g., for appointment setting)||✔️||✔️|
|Limit number of entries (e.g., for competitions and polls)||❌||✔️|
|Quizzes and polls||✔️||✔️|
|Email marketing service integrations||✔️||✔️|
|CRM Integrations||Salesforce||Agile, Capsule, Zoho|
|Zapier integration (for automation)||✔️||✔️|
|Instant admin email notification of form submissions||✔️||❌ (but possible using partial entries and conditional logic)|
|Spam protection||CAPTCHA, honeypot, and Akismet||CAPTCHA|
Please note that some of the above-listed features may only be available with the more expensive pricing plans.
WPForms vs. Gravity Forms: Pricing
Both WPForms and Gravity Forms have reasonably similar pricing, although WPForms offers four plans to choose from instead of Gravity Forms’ three:
|Price Per Year||$39.50||$99.50||$199.50||$299.50|
|No. of Domains||1||3||5||Unlimited|
|Moneyback Guarantee||14 days|
|Price Per Year||$59||$159||$259|
|No. of Domains||1||3||Unlimited|
|Moneyback Guarantee||30 days|
Please note that the subscriptions listed above were correct when I wrote this article and may be subject to change at any time.
Neither plugin is available with a free trial, although a free version of WPForms is available via the WordPress plugin directory, so you can use that without a license. Understandably, that has minimal features and is only helpful in creating things like elementary contact forms. However, that might be all you need, so maybe try out the free version first, and upgrade to a premium plan only as and when you need the extra features? Unfortunately, no free version of Gravity Forms is available, although there is an online demo.
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The developers of both plugins offer a moneyback guarantee so trying them out is relatively risk-free. However, gravity Forms have been more generous in this respect, offering a refund policy over two weeks longer than that provided by WPForms.
Both Gravity Forms and WPForms are well-established form-building plugins and have evolved to be user-friendly and intuitive. Therefore, they both use drag-and-drop, making form creation quick and easy. Both clearly drew inspiration from Elementor, with all of the form field ‘blocks’ located in a convenient panel, ready to be dragged and dropped wherever you need them on the form.
Here is an example of the WPForms interface:
And here is an example of the Gravity Forms interface:
If I were to be persnickety, I prefer the look of the WPForms interface, as it has a colored menu panel that separates it nicely from the form’s work area. However, that is merely a matter of personal preference.
In both WPForms and Gravity Forms, it is easy to edit the form fields once placed thanks to integral form fields editors. Those editors are in the ‘Field Options’ (WPForms) or ‘Field Settings’ tabs (Gravity Forms), and the options given will depend on the field selected. Furthermore, rearranging the fields in the forms is easy with both plugins – all you need to do is drag them from their current position and drop them into their new home.
Form building is what both WPForms and Gravity Forms plugins are about, although there are specific key differences between the two, as I shall now explain.
WPForms is the hands-down winner here, boasting a vast library of 332 pre-made templates within the plugin itself. In fact, there are forms for virtually every conceivable scenario, such as contact forms, accident reports, purchase orders, meeting room registrations, lesson plans, proposals, invitations, and many more.
On the other hand, Gravity Forms provides a relatively meager selection of templates – thirteen, to be precise. Furthermore, these are not integral to the plugin itself, and instead, you need to download them.
Form Field types
Both plugins contain over thirty form field types. Overall, those types are pretty consistent between the two, with the only real difference being how they are grouped.
In the case of WP Forms, fields types are titled standard, fancy, and payment, while Gravity Forms categorizes them into the standard, advanced, post, and payment. With both plugins, expect to find the basics such as name, phone number, email address, etc., rubbing shoulders with more advanced ones, for example, passwords, CAPTCHA, and the like.
If you need to capture physical signatures, the Pro version of WPForms has a rather handy add-on that will let you add a signature field to your forms where users can ‘draw’ their signatures into a box.
Quiz and survey fields – including Likert choice types – can be added to both plugins via add-ons. However, those are only available with the more expensive plans of both WPForms and Gravity Forms.
Both plugins allow you to embed checkboxes, radio buttons, and dropdowns into your forms. Checkboxes are perfect for capturing opt-ins, consents, and preferences, whereas radio buttons and dropdowns are perfect where only one choice is allowed, such as size, color choice, etc.
Having beautiful forms is all fine and dandy, but you also need to manage the data submitted by users through them effectively.
WPForms makes entry management super easy, with everything stored in your site’s database and accessible through the WordPress dashboard. From there, it is possible to do things such as mark entries as favorites or read, and you can also delete ones you don’t need. Furthermore, three main views are available: entries overview page, form entries page, and individual entry page, and these allow you to drill down into the various depths of the data. It is also possible to search and filter entries and edit, print, or export them. Click here to find out more about WPForms entry management.
Entry management in Gravity Forms is a totally different ball game. Firstly, you need to install the WP-CLI Add-On, and then you can manipulate the data using the WordPress command line. In case you were wondering, WP-CLI is a tool that uses a text-based interface whereby you can interact with your WordPress site directly. The upside of this is it is possible to do things faster than if done in the backend of your site. However, you do need to know the parameters and syntax of the commands to do them – you can find more details of those here.
For many people, particularly those new to WordPress, the thought of using WP-CLI to manage data in Gravity Forms can look rather scary and akin to coding. Therefore, I probably speak for those individuals in saying that I prefer WPForms’ data management arrangements, where all the necessary functions are conveniently sited within the WordPress dashboard.
The Pro and Elite versions of WPForms include a form abandonment add-on that lets you automatically send email reminders to visitors who have not fully completed a form. That is very similar to abandoned cart recovery methods commonly used in eCommerce, and is a powerful way of increasing conversions, as people often just need a little nudge to encourage them to complete an action. It is particularly suited to applications where sales are at stake, such as requests for quotations, order forms, etc.
Unfortunately, Gravity Forms does not have a dedicated abandoned forms facility. However, it is possible to do it using the partial entries add-on (included with the Pro and Elite versions only) combined with conditional logic to send emails where forms are not fully complete.
Both plugins offer a range of third-party service integrations, ranging from marketing through payment gateways to CRMs and many more. However, of the two plugins, Gravity Forms has the most extensive list of integrations, many of which are direct.
Conversely, WPForms has a much smaller library of integrations. Instead, it relies heavily on Zapier to do many things that Gravity Forms does directly, such as posting the form submissions as Slack notifications. The downside of having to use Zapier is cost because if you have over one hundred tasks per month, you will need a premium subscription of that also.
One great thing about both plugins is that because they have conditional logic, it is possible to automate some integrations. For example, suppose someone checks a box on your form agreeing to be added to your email list. In that case, you could use conditional logic to automatically add their email address to whichever email integration you are using, such as Mailchimp.
Overall, in my mind, Gravity Forms takes the edge over WPForms on the integrations front simply because it has so many direct ones that ultimately make things much easier (and cheaper).
So, you are probably now asking yourself which is best: Gravity Forms or WPForms? The short answer is, they are both excellent plugins for adding both simple and advanced forms to your WordPress website. However, personally speaking, I would err more towards WPforms for the following reasons:
- WPForms has a massive library of 300+ form templates versus Gravity Forms’ pitiful thirteen.
- Entry management is done through the WordPress dashboard instead of the WordPress command line, as is the case with Gravity Forms.
- WPForms has integrated functions to recover abandoned forms, thereby increasing conversions.
- The user interface is clearer than the one on Gravity Forms, although this really is splitting hairs.
However, don’t dismiss Gravity Forms outright. Price-wise, its Pro and Elite plans compare very favorably to WPForms, plus it has a much longer moneyback guarantee period (30-days as opposed to 14.) What’s more, it runs rings around WPForms when it comes to integrations, so if those are important to you, then this plugin could be the one to choose.
What is your favorite form builder plugin, and why? Have you used either WPForms or Gravity Forms yet? And if so, I’d love to hear how your experiences with them have been.
On a final note, you may also like to take a look at the detailed review of WPForms available on WPLift.