An absolutely essential part of having a WordPress blog for Internet Marketing purposes is to have some way to collect emails from visitors, feedback from visitors, gather information to form a lead for sales and for subscribing visitors to your email list. Gravity Forms reigned the clear winner with me for two years, but not anymore.
Up until May 2012, I was proud to proclaim my love for Gravity Forms. I was happy to shell out their developer fee of $199 (and renewed my annual fee without question) so that I could run their WordPress plugin on my multi-site WPMU install last year and was just about to renew it again this year when it suddenly stopped working. I shelled out my renewal fee so that I could get support to fix a problem affecting all my clients sites and… Well, let me spare you the day-by-day back-and-forth… Simply put, they didn’t fix this problem for eight days (that’s about 200 hours!) and they blamed it on my webhost the whole time, blasted me in an email when I complained that I wasn’t getting help, canceled my subscription, blocked me from their site and left me right where I was eight days before wanting help. They did, at least, refund my renewal fee which I paid to get their “priority support” but it was anything but.
I searched high and low, found a Gravity Forms alternative, plugged it in and it worked fine. If only I had done that long ago!
Meet Formidable Pro: My Gravity Forms Alternative
I decided to test Formidable Pro for free and then upgrade if it worked OK and it did.
In fairness,I should at least give a thoughtful comparison beteween Formidable Pro versus Gravity Forms despite the customer service nightmare they put me through. Quite simply, Formidable Pro does what Gravity Forms does, costs thousands less and the support is responsive, polite and very helpful. But here’s a more detailed comparison…
The Cost Difference Is Enormous
Formidable Pro only costs $47 FOR LIFE to run advanced plugins on a single (or multi-site installation as in my case) compared to Gravity Forms which will run you over $1,000 in just 10 years (just under $200 the first year and just under $100 each year for renewal). I don’t know how long you plan on being in business, but I plan on being in business forever (that means thousands and thousands of dollars!), so that makes Formidable Pro almost free in my eyes. That’s a HUGE difference, my friends. Thankfully, Formidable Pro counts a multi-site installation as ONE installation. Gravity Forms doesn’t do that, so that’s another reason to go with Formidable Pro!
The Features Are Better in Formidable Pro, Too
I could go through a laundry list of features of both. They both will gather data which is their basic function. They both have a great deal of customization. They are both widgetized. They both have 3rd party plugins like PayPal and MailChimp and Aweber and several others. They both have email notification and can send the user to another page upon form completion. These are all hoped for and expected nowadays. However, there are two capabilities that belong to Formidable Pro that do not come with Gravity Forms.
- The first is the ability to edit data already collected. If a user is logged in, they can add or edit their form data and change it. That doesn’t exist in Gravity Forms.
- The second is that Formidable Pro gives you the ability to IMPORT data in CSV form. When I was with Gravity Forms, I had asked them if that could be done and they scoffed at the idea; it’s inexplicable to me why that would be. Let’s say that you wanted to migrate your data from one site to another. With Formidable Pro, you can export that data and then import it. You can’t do that with Gravity Forms. With Formidable Pro, you can also edit any of the forms that are filled out. I use this to display data from fields.
I’m Not The Only One Who Isn’t a Fan Of Gravity Forms
I’m not the only one who developed a dislike for Gravity’s “priority support.” If you read the comments at the link, you’ll see the head of Gravity Forms (Kevin) plus the guy who failed to provide priority support to me (Carl) defending Gravity and basically not listening at all and minimizing and defending instead of really trying to see where they may be at fault first and last. I’m sure that the last thing that this blogger Tom Léger wanted was to have problems with Gravity Forms and I felt that way for sure. I just want something that works and if it doesn’t then I want some tangible help. Instead of just going “OK, nobody’s perfect and we can make it up to you,” you can see all this back and forth trying to prove why Tom Léger is wrong and why Gravity Forms is right. That’s just useless and aggravating. And I also want to make one thing clear: I became such a fan of Formidable Pro that I signed up for their affiliate program, so I do earn an affiliate commission if you try it for free and buy if you like it. Just click here to try out Formidable Pro for free. And please do let me know what you think in the comments below. I’m sure I won’t be the only one happy to jump ship on Gravity and get out of having to pay their annual fee for a plugin that just is not clearly better.