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The short version of this story is that the contact form on WordPress.com has been upgraded. But that leaves out so many of the juicy details :-)

A couple of months ago we took a step back to look at what sort of things the contact form needed and what it could be. While this is still technically a contact form, it is now so much more.

First up, the new interface. Typing in the shortcode still works fine, but we wanted to provide a graphical way for people to manage the form. To do this you click on the ‘Add a custom form’ button:

Add a new form

Add a new form

That will bring up our new custom form builder:

Form Builder

Form Builder

The form builder gives you a simple, but powerful, set of controls on how your form will look and behave.  Common changes you can do that we think you’ll find handy:

  • Add and remove fields
  • Re-order the field list (drag and drop)
  • Select from several types of fields (text, drop down, checkbox, radio button, textarea, etc.)
  • Mark fields as required
  • Enter a specific email address you want the form results sent to
  • Custom subject line for the form results email

Clicking on the ‘Add this form to my post’ button will insert the shortcode for the form into your post.  If  you forgot something you can either edit the shortcode by hand, or simply click the ‘Add custom form’ button again and the form builder will re-load the form details and allow you to change them.

Now if we had stopped there, this would still be a great upgrade, but we decided to turn the volume up to 11.

In addition to emailing out the form results, they are now also stored in the WordPress database.  You’ll notice a new menu item called ‘Feedbacks’, just below ‘Comments’:

Feedbacks

The feedback management is patterned after the style of comment management.  Form submissions that Akismet marks as spam are under the ‘Spam’ section.  If for some reason Akismet made a mistake you can click the ‘Not Spam’ action and the details will be sent back to Akismet so that it can learn from the mistake.  And because you indicated that it wasn’t spam after all, the form results are emailed out again.  You can delete, restore, and permanently delete each entry as well.

For more details check out the updated support documentation on the contact form. For WordPress.org powered blogs we have released this as an update to the Grunion Contact Form plugin, version 2.0.