Ask DN : How do i add a contact form to my website without any back-end knowledge?

over 2 years ago from , Designer & Developer

I'm a UI designer currently mastering HTML/CSS/JavaScript but don't know any back-end stuff.

How do i add a contact form to my website with ease?



  • Diana Lopez, over 2 years ago


    18 points
  • M. AppelmanM. Appelman, over 2 years ago (edited over 2 years ago )
    9 points
  • Fabricio Rosa MarquesFabricio Rosa Marques, over 2 years ago

    I think using external services for a simple contact form is unnecessary. Just follow this tutorial here. You can essentially copy/paste the entire js/php stuff if you don't want to get into this at all and just make sure to adjust selectors accordingly.

    4 points
    • Alex HeetonAlex Heeton, over 2 years ago

      Understanding/implementing a new server-side script (having to deal with servers, PHP, SMTP or databases with no previous backend experience) is anything but simple. And I say that as someone with 10 years of backend development experience.

      Isn't the first job of a designer to empathise with the user and understand their needs?

      5 points
      • Fabricio Rosa MarquesFabricio Rosa Marques, over 2 years ago

        I am a designer and managed to do this following a tut, it really isn't rocket science ;) He says he's mastering JS (from which I'm really far away), so presumably he doesn't fear to look into a few lines of PHP and modifying some entries here and there. Why should he have to deal with databases if he just wants a (simple?) contact from? There are lots and lots of tutorials which walk you through this, and if you don't want so spend the time to understand exactly how it works just copy/paste/edit (that's what I did a couple of times before, took me less than 1 hour to get things running).

        1 point
        • Alex HeetonAlex Heeton, over 2 years ago

          C'mon, you really can't empathise with this? It may not be rocket science but there is no way you can say that learning several new technologies is simpler/easier than dropping in a single line of code from a 3rd party service.

          And blindly copy-pasting code without understanding it is never a good idea. In my experience that only ever leads to more confusion and stress when something isn't working and you need to debug it. Removing that stress by offloading the server-side can be very useful for some people.

          It can actually be very insulting for you to keep saying it's "simple". You find it simple, others do not. Empathy is very, very important.

          4 points
          • Thomas Michael SemmlerThomas Michael Semmler, over 2 years ago (edited over 2 years ago )

            I can emphasize with it, which is why I also think it is needed to know the basics of how the server works. Knowing css/html/js is enough in theory, but in practice is almost never is.

            Even the back-end stuff is totally learnable and not as hard as it may seem at first. But so many designers in our imposter-syndrome poisoned community tell newcomers that all they need to know is html & css and they are good to go, because everything else is managed by tools - and I think that's a dangerous attitude.

            I think it's important, to not lie to new members of the web community, and pretend like all they need is to know html & css, and a little bit of javascript. It is enough for a start, but you'll have to keep going. But this could grow into a debate that shouldn't be held here.

            1 point
          • Fabricio Rosa MarquesFabricio Rosa Marques, over 2 years ago

            It's not about learning the entire thing, but rather about learning the necessary and relevant stuff to achieve your goal (Hacking spirit, etc.). Again, if he's got some sort of programming foundation (Javascript?) reading what those scripts do is not only understandable, but also informative and enriching. I wouldn't have proposed this if he'd not say that he's mastering JS along with HTML/CSS.

            It's also worth noting that each of those 3rd party services add technical debt on their own, plus they possibly cost something. They might make more sense if you have no technical understanding or really don't want to deal with all of this or if requirements get more complex and if you decide to add more fields, gather the data somewhere, etc.

            Ray seems to be eager to learn new things, so why not encourage him to dig a bit deeper and have a slice of that "back end stuff" (in a relevant and clearly defined straight-forward scenario) and possibly save some money? Seems pretty empathetic to me ;)

            3 points
  • Jonathan SimcoeJonathan Simcoe, over 2 years ago

    Formkeep looks great. Formspree is a nice free option too.

    3 points
  • Ibrahim NergizIbrahim Nergiz, over 2 years ago

    Hey, you can use the JotForm.

    2 points
    • Jeffrey Gochman, over 2 years ago

      I second using JotFornm. Super easy to use, lots of features, easy to embed on your site. Also the support team is super quick at getting back to you.

      Plus they have a free option!

      0 points
  • Thomas Michael SemmlerThomas Michael Semmler, over 2 years ago

    There are solutions, as many have already suggested them. But, you'll need to get a bit of an understanding of how that back-end stuff works. If you master HTML/CSS/JS you should also look a bit into the server side. I'm not saying you have to learn PHP, or ruby, or any other language used on the server side, but you should know the basics of how an apache works and why it does what it does. Even if you are specialized in Front End Tech; The server is part of the whole system and can't be ignored. As performance etc. are now a crucial part of the success metrics of a website, knowing the basics is essential.

    2 points
  • David DarnesDavid Darnes, over 2 years ago

    You should try out Formspree.

    Even wrote an article on how to use it :)

    0 points
  • Dragan BabicDragan Babic, over 2 years ago

    You can give a try. It's designed for the specific need you have, and has a deal tracking/CRM thing going on on top of it.

    0 points
  • Ozgur OzerOzgur Ozer, over 2 years ago

    Here's a good one Formlets

    0 points
  • George Kedenburg IIIGeorge Kedenburg III, over 2 years ago

    You could use Parse!

    0 points
  • Ben Wolfram, over 2 years ago

    It's honestly not that hard with a little bit of goolging! It can be done with a fairly simple PHP file.

    0 points
    • Doug OrchardDoug Orchard, over 2 years ago

      True that, however sometimes a 'googling' gives to many overcomplicated answers. With a web so oversaturated with results it's hard and frustrating to find the answer you're looking for.

      0 points
  • Jesper Christiansen, over 1 year ago

    There are 3rd party services that offer this. I built one of them called FormBackend - you simply create a form url on our site and use it as the action in your form html. You can then get notified when someone submits your form, or email them to let them know you've received their submission.

    0 points
  • Ankit Singhaniya, over 1 year ago

    I asked the exact same question and it seems possible to do. I have my blog on classandobjects and I wanted to get subscribers on my site. I looked for multiple alternatives and either they were very costly or didn't work as I intended them to do. So I went ahead and build a solution Formester which solved all my problems. Then I planned to make it available to everyone and here it is. Give it a try and let me know if we can add new features that solve other use cases that you may have.

    0 points
  • Oguzcan Köse, 10 months ago

    There is a freemium website,

    0 points