Contact Form 7: The Best Extensions for Your Contact Form

6 Min.
Contact Form 7 WordPress

A contact form is the easiest way for your visitors to reach you. We show you extensions and add-ons you can use for the popular WordPress plugin Contact Form 7 to take your contact forms to the next level.

Contact Form 7 is by far the most well-known contact form plugin for WordPress and WooCommerce. With over five million active installations, Contact Form 7 is embedded on more websites than any other plugin in the same category.

Contact Form 7 alternative

Are you are looking for an alternative to Contact Form 7? Is the range of functions still not enough even with extensions? Check out our comparison of the best contact form plugins for WordPress.

Unlike paid premium plugins such as WPForms, Ninja Forms and Gravity Forms, Contact Form 7 is free and relatively simple. You can create contact forms, set up email responses and offer different input types and formats including text, email and telephone numbers.

Contact Form 7 extensions for implementing complex tasks

Contact Form 7 is not suitable for more complex tasks, however. At least not without suitable add-ons. But there are countless extensions available for Contact Form 7 in the WordPress plugin directory. You can use these to add practical functions to your contact forms.

It's important to point out here that most of these extensions come from other WordPress developers and not Takayuki Miyoshi, the developer behind Contact Form 7. You should therefore always check the compatibility carefully.

As a helpful guide, you can check out the information in the WordPress plugin directory, the number of active installations and the user ratings. You can also read the following articles:

Plugin Version WordPress
Compatibility with the WordPress version in the plugin directory.

Let's take a closer look now at a few extensions that allow you to create a database, payment process, form terms, drag-and-drop file upload, and multi-page forms

Contact Form 7: Create a database

Contact Form 7 sends an email to you each time you fill out a contact form. And optionally also a confirmation to the visitors who filled out the form.

If you need an additional database with the entries in your WordPress backend - if you want to better document your submissions or because you work with a team - then you can implement this with an add-on.

You must, however, ensure that this is implemented in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). This means you have to obtain permission from the senders in the appropriate way. You should clarify this with a law firm specializing in online law.

There are a few plugins to choose from in this area. The best known with over 300,000 active installations is the Contact Form 7 Database Addon - CFDB7 plugin. This tool allows you to view all entries from your contact forms in the backend, process them or export them as a CSV file. Again, you still need to clarify the issue of data protection here.

Contact Form 7 database Plugin
Database plugin extension for Contact Form 7

Process PayPal and Stripe via contact form

A contact form is not the best way to handle payment transactions in WordPress. It's better to use WooCommerce with the appropriate plugins instead. However, if you still want to make a booking or purchase possible via Contact Form 7, there is a tool available: Contact Form 7 - PayPal & Stripe Add-on.

As the name suggests, this plugin enables payments via PayPal and Stripe. There are potential sources of error lurking in this tool so it's only advisable to implement it if you have a fair bit of experience with WordPress or can rely on experienced WordPress developers to help. This complexity is highlighted by the mixed reviews the plugin has received. If the basic version isn't enough for you, there's also a pro version available with more features.

Forms with conditional fields in Contact Form 7

Contact Form 7 offers a static contact form. The form thus always looks the same, no matter what your visitors fill in. This means you may be wasting a lot of potential as you're limited to either asking for a very restricted data set or you have to build a separate form for each purpose.

Dynamic contact forms are better. The forms adjust depending on what your visitors enter. A practical example: if you offer two products that may have different errors, you can ask the user to select the product in the support contact form. If the visitor selects product A,  they will get additional fields that ask exactly what you need to fix product A's errors. And, vice versa, the same with product B.

There are also extensions for this, for example Contact Form 7 - Conditional Fields. This allows you to create entire groups of fields that are only displayed according to a certain logic, for example, when a certain option is selected.

Conditional Fields WordPress
Conditional fields in WordPress and Contact Form 7

Admittedly, you do have to get used to this logic initially. But once you've understood it, you can get very powerful functions and processes out of the Contact Form 7 forms.

Drag-and-drop file upload for Contact Form 7

Although Contact Form 7 offers an option to upload a file, the options are unfortunately pretty limited. An upload via drag-and-drop where your visitors can also upload several files at once is much more user friendly.

This is exactly what the plugin Drag and Drop Multiple File Upload - Contact Form 7 offers, as the name rightly suggests. In addition, you can restrict the file types and sizes, limit the number of documents to be uploaded and have the uploads sent to you via email attachment or link.

Upload Contact Form 7
Upload multiple files at once to Contact Form 7

There is also a paid pro version of this tool that offers, among many other features, zip compression, image preview and automatic deletion of documents after a certain period of time.

Forms over several pages - multi-level forms

Long contact forms in particular can be intimidating for your visitors. It can easily become confusing, for example, if you want to include a long form that asks for a lot of information and answers.

There are multi-page forms for this purpose; these are contact forms divided across multiple pages. Unfortunately, Contact Form 7 does not provide this option out of the box. But there is a suitable extension available: Contact Form 7 Multi-Step Forms.

Multistep Contact Form WordPress
Contact forms across multiple pages

This tool allows you to easily insert page breaks into your contact forms. Of course, the entered data is transferred and not lost. This way you can split contact forms into as many subpages as you like and thus create a better user experience.

Important: don't forget GDPR

As already mentioned, it's important for solutions with contact forms that you observe the current rules of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). After all, your users usually enter their contact details or other personal data in these forms.

This applies both to the contact forms via Contact Form 7 and, of course, to the Contact Form 7 add-ons presented in this article.

You should therefore check the compatibility of all your plugins with your privacy policy. This applies in particular to sensitive data such as the processing of payments via PayPal and Stripe, but also to the creation of a database with the form data from your visitors.

Conclusion: Contact Form 7 is a modular all-rounder

You can find a Contact Form 7 extension for almost every purpose in the WordPress plugin directory. Contact Form 7 itself is already the best plugin for basic contact forms but modular extensions mean it can be converted into a true all-rounder.

If you're looking for extensions for Contact Form 7, you can search for "Contact Form 7" in the plugin directory of WordPress or in the other WordPress plugin stores. Simply add "add-on", "extension", "extension" or the acronym "CF7" for even more targeted results.

But one question remains: does it even make sense to put together such an all-rounder yourself with multiple plugins? The more plugins and extensions you install, the more cumbersome your WordPress installation becomes. Moreover, each extension brings more potential for errors.

You can certainly use a plugin to expand the functions of Contact Form 7. But it's debatable whether it's a good idea to use multiple extensions and ending up with a patchwork contact form. An alternative is to use professional contact forms plugins, many of which we've already tested in our magazine. These plugins have their price but it means you have everything in a single solution. In addition, the support is usually better and already included in the purchase price.

Your questions and experiences with Contact Form 7

Which extension do you use? How satisfied are you with it? What questions do you have about Contact Form 7? Feel free to use the comment function. Do you want more tips on WordPress and WooCommerce? Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or subscribe to our newsletter.

Christina is service editor at BASIC thinking, one of the biggest tech magazines in Germany. Her topics include technology, business, and marketing. For many years she has been working with WordPress at BASIC thinking as well as on her own projects.

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