When Wufoo and I first started dating, it was a simpler time. All my needs for beautiful “Contact Me” forms, RSVP trackers and elegant payment pages were satisfied. We were the Ross & Rachael of SaaS data collection. However, as our relationship grew, my needs became more complex.
You see, I wanted to use Wufoo to host a big honking employee survey for a client with thousands of employees and well over 100 questions—a form destined to collide with Wufoo’s Maximum Field Limit. With a bit of work, however, I determined that I could overcome this challenge using a combination of templating, URL modifications, form settings and custom themes.
While this sounds like a lot to do, don’t be afraid! It’s actually a lot easier than my previous how-to post and the tips are useful in a variety of situations.
A Few Tips Before You Get Started
- It’s a good idea to look at your draft survey and do a rough addition of the number of simple questions, page breaks, Likert questions, and “select all” questions. When you hit about 100, look for a logical place in that area to divide the two forms; err on the side of fewer fields on the first form.
- It’s a good idea to use a lot of page breaks in large surveys regardless, but they especially help with this technique because the end-user will just think they are going to another page when they are going to a separate form.
- We won’t be able to use any of the pagination features because they are a dead give-away.
- While these instructions involve two forms, you can stitch together any number of forms you wish, account limits permitting.
- This requires a paid account to work.
Step 1: The Doppelganger
You can create a second form with the same exact name as your first form, or you can call them “Form 1” and “Form 2” — either way is fine.
Step 2: Linking Entry IDs
If you are going to do some additional analysis with the raw data, you’ll want a way to link the entries from each form. This can be accomplished by passing the Entry ID from form 1 to Form 2 and hiding it from the end-user.
So in Form 2 add a number field (can also be a text field) to collect the Entry ID from Form 1.
Don’t forget to hide it from the public.
Then, in the form settings for Form 1, pass the EntryID field using the website redirect feature from Form 1. Remember, redirects are available for paid accounts only.
Unlike the image above, replace “field####” with the field ID from that form’s API information. You can also pass unique email addresses and any other information you collect, but the EntryID is the most handy unique token available. This can also be done with Form Rules if you want to redirect to be conditional (e.g., only a certain group of employees needs to respond to questions in Form 2).
Step 3: The Theme Scheme
Take whatever theme you will use for both forms and make an identical copy. Then change the text on the Submit button to Next Page—clever, eh?!
This, combined with the URL redirect, will give the impression they are being taken to another page instead of another form. If you want to complete the illusion, you can download an html page with Form 1 embedded in it from the code manager and upload it to your server. If you use this technique, the URL redirect and switch will be totally masked by the iFrame.
Step 4: Setting up a Report
I use Wufoo reports as real-time dashboards for clients to track the progress of each survey without needing to email me for status updates. But with separate forms, one needs to have separate reports.
The best solution I’ve found is to create a new report for each section and build a table of contents on the overview page. Don’t forget to add a “Back to Overview” link on the subsequent report pages to keep it seamless.