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Online forms are really a collection of questions you ask a visitor to your website who is interested in something from your organization. For instance, if you are an adoption agency, you'll certainly want an adoption application so that those interested in adopting one of your rescued animals can give you some answers before you interview them. And, you'll be able to keep this form in your database for future reference. Maybe you're a feral cat trap-neuter-vaccinate-return organization. You will want a form for visitors in the community to request your help, as well as one for people who want barn cats. 

Forms help you to collect answers and keep the information in a usable, easily accessible form.

When you create a form, you collect the questions into what in the past would have been a hard-copy form clipped to a clipboard. Now people can simply go online and fill out the form. And your volunteers can do the same when they review the forms or do an interview.

With the Online Forms service, your volunteers, such as an adoption coordinator, can review a form and add comments, and volunteers can change the status of the submitted forms to reflect where they are in the process. Volunteers can get email alerts when a form is completed and submitted.

Where do I find it?

You can find the Online Forms page by going to Features > Online Forms.



On this page:

Using the Online Forms service, you can create custom online forms and track them online or export a form as a PDF. You can easily review forms submitted to you from anywhere you have access to the internet. 

The Online Forms feature is available with the RescueGroups.org Website Service and Online Forms iFrame Service.

If you have the Website Service, you don't need to use the iFrame service - online forms are automatically added to your website. For detailed information about online forms, see the Online Forms Guide.

Use the iFrame service when you want your forms to be available on a website other than your RescueGroups.org website. For instance, your organization may already have a website, or you may have permission to put your adoptable animals on a third-party site and you need a way to do so. Using the Online Forms iFrame Service allows you to do that.

Using the Online Forms service, you can cut the time and effort it takes to provide and view applications and other forms, and you can quickly access the forms which have been submitted. You can track the progress of the form through your system, and you can assign the form to a volunteer for follow-up.

Some major benefits of using Online Forms:

  • The entire form (questions and answers) stays on your website.
  • Volunteers are immediately alerted (via email) when a form is completed.
  • You can choose to either receive just an alert or an email with the form contents.
  • We keep submitted forms indefinitely.
  • You can easily add comments to a form, change the status of a form, assign the form to a volunteer to follow up, and track the progress of the form!
  • You can capture contact information automatically and have it added to the forms.
  • You can have your applicants added automatically as Contacts.

You can create as many forms as you need for your organization. Some common forms are Adoption Applications, Foster Applications, and Volunteer Applications.

When you create a form, certain information can be automatically captured without your having to create questions. This information is captured when a user registers. You have the option of requiring visitors to register to complete any given form, or allowing unregistered visitors to fill out forms. This information can be captured  from the visitor's registration - you select the information:

  • First name
  • Last name
  • Address, City, State, Zip/Postal Code
  • Home Phone
  • Work Phone
  • Cell Phone
  • Fax
  • Email Address

Your organization's forms will appear to the visitor on their Forms page and on your site menu. If your visitors have registered on your site, any forms they have started will appear on their My Rescue page.

When visitors have not registered on your site and fill out a form, several things happen:

  • Your form will not be displayed as pages, it will be on one page (you can also choose to have your questions on one page)
  • The visitor's contact information will not be captured; therefore, visitors must fill out the fields. However, we do add the contact fields to your forms.
  • You won't have the option to automatically add applicants to your Contact list

However, there are some people who object to registering on web sites. The choice is yours. Some groups give visitors the option of registering or not.

Submitting a form for someone else

Anyone with either the role of Online Form User or Online Form Manager can submit a form for someone else by going to Contacts > Submitted Forms and clicking Submit a Form.

A volunteer can choose to receive an alert when an online form is submitted.  The alert will be sent regardless of whether the online form is for an animal they are fostering or not.

Receive Form Alerts

Your volunteers must enable the option to receive an email alert when a visitor to your website completes an online form if they want to receive an alert.
The option is available from Services & Settings > My Settings > Email Alert

Need help creating your online forms?

You can create your forms easily by following the instructions in this guide. However, we know it can be intimidating. If you'd like, we can create your forms for you or we can give you advice and answer your questions.

Need help: Please open a support ticket and we can walk you through creating your form.

Prefer to have us create your form for you? Please open a support ticket, include your form or questions, and we will provide you with a quote.

Have a question about this topic?