How to gather entries with an external form on your website

by | Jun 21, 2021 | Articles

Award Force’s default registration option makes it easy for users to register and start their entry or nomination quickly.

Award Force registration page

But there may be situations where this option is not ideal, registration is not required or you’d prefer to use your own form tool to collect entries to your awards. Using Zapier, a workflow automation tool and your preferred forms tool, you can embed an online form directly on your website and automatically pass the information entered on that form, into your Award Force account. No need to manually transfer or copy and paste the details from a spreadsheet. Let Zapier do it for you!

In this example, the use case is an awards program in the aged care industry where patients and the community can nominate a carer they believe has delivered outstanding levels of service.

Since some of the nominators are older and may not be familiar with online systems, we have created a simple one page form where they can nominate their chosen carer.

We’ll be using Google Forms in this example but you can use any other form builder such as JotForm or Typeform. 

How to create entries from a form embedded on your website

Step 1: Create form with Google forms

Create your form in Google forms.

Next, you want to create a spreadsheet with all the responses. Click the Responses tab and click the small green icon on the right and select Create a new spreadsheet. Google will automatically create the spreadsheet and populate the column headings with the questions from the form.

Step 2: Configure the entry form in your Award Force platform

Ensure the entry form in Award Force matches the Google form. This means for every field in the Google form you need to create the same field in Award Force. This will allow you to easily match up the fields using Zapier in the next step.

Step 3: Setting up Zapier

Log into Zapier and connect Google Sheets and Award Force. 

Create Zapier workflow

Follow the prompts in Zapier. For Google Sheets you’ll want the trigger to be New or Updated Spreadsheet Row. And for Award Force the action should be Create Entry.

To help match up everything, you’ll need to add the unique identifier for entrant, category, season and chapter to the zap (known as slugs). These can be found within your Award Force account in the relevant section. For example, to find the category slugs, go to Settings > Entries > Categories and click Export at the top right. The spreadsheet will include the slugs for all of your categories. Slugs can also be found by adding the slug column to the table view.

For the entrant, if you don’t need or want to collect the entrant’s name and email address, you can assign the entries to a generic user i.e call it “Nomination entry” or something relevant to you and use an email address such as nomination@yourwebsite.com or any other email address you want to use.

Streamline and simplify the entrant experience

As you can see, Award Force and Zapier are a powerful combination and give you the flexibility to configure your program as you need.

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