How to create an online application form

If you’re wondering how to create an online application form, you’ve come to the right place.

The most straightforward approach is to use a form builder platform.

From here, you can either create your document from scratch or use a pre-selected template.

Then, you just need to follow a few best practices, like keeping it short and simple and ensuring the formatting is user-friendly.

Before long, you’ll have an online application form that meets all your needs.

In this article, we’ll examine the online application form creation process in more detail. We’ll also share some tips and tricks for streamlining the process.

What exactly is an online application form?

In simple terms, an online application form is a tool used for the collection of information.

Typically, you’d expect to see a series of fields for the recipient to fill out alongside sections with features such as checkboxes, drop-down menus, or interactive elements.

With tools like internet browser autofill, these forms can be completed in just a few clicks of the mouse.

What’s even better is that the data can be instantly stored and accessed by the organization that created the form, allowing for super speedy communication!

If you’ve ever applied for a job, enrolled in college, or registered for an event, you’ll have encountered one of these forms before.

But did you know that, unlike traditional paper application forms, online application forms offer several other advantages?

Greater convenience

Online forms can be accessed and completed anywhere in the world with an internet connection.

Plus, they can be sent to recipients in a matter of seconds, saving time and effort for everyone!

Pinpoint accuracy

Digital forms are less prone to errors, such as required fields not being filled out.

Additionally, you can include validation rules to prevent common mistakes such as typos or invalid data types.

Simple data management

Information is automatically saved in a digital format, making it easier to organize, search, and analyze.

You can integrate this data with business tools, such as CRM software or email marketing platforms, for even more efficient data management.

Want some inspiration on where else you can use application forms?

See: What are online forms usually used for

How to create an online application form

Anyone who owns a website and has experience in coding can probably build an application form from scratch in a spare afternoon.

For the rest of us, the easiest route to creating online applications is by using a form builder platform.

The first step is to choose a platform that suits your needs.

Make sure to look out for tools that have features such as templates, customization options, and data management tools.

Then, you should design your form with a user-friendly layout and intuitive navigation, using clear instructions and helpful prompts.

We’ll cover all this and more in detail in the next section.

How to fill out an online application form

This section covers the steps explaining how to create an application form online:

Determine the form’s purpose

Create a list of all the information that you need to collect.

Know your audience: Who will receive the form? What sort of language should you use? Should you offer additional accessibility options?

Select a template or start from scratch

Many form builders offer customizable templates that you can modify to fit your needs.

See PandaDoc’s template library for inspiration to get started!

Design your form

Use clear and concise language and present your instructions and questions in an intuitive layout.

Be sure to implement your organization’s brand criteria, such as the use of specific logos or terminology.

Add fields and form elements

Make sure you have fields for all necessary information, making them mandatory where applicable.

Include features such as drop-down menus or an integrated calendar for greater ease of use.

Best practices in creating application forms

Making an application online doesn’t have to be difficult, but there are several tips that you should learn about now to save yourself from headaches later on:

Keep it short and simple

Avoid asking unnecessary or irrelevant questions. The best forms are easy to read and navigate.

Consider dividing it into sections or pages, so the applicant doesn’t feel overwhelmed.

Use logical formatting and design

Organize the questions into a predictable order and use subtle formatting and design to make the form visually appealing.

Always test before publishing

Before publishing the form, test it to ensure that it works properly, and all the questions are displayed correctly.

Check that the form can be submitted and that the data is being collected accurately.

Implement security checks

For instance, if you’re creating an employment application form, it’s a good idea to require a field for an eSignature (and if you’re wondering, PandaDoc has you covered here).

Protect your users’ data

Host your form on a secure website server and utilize firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and SSL encryption.

Make sure to periodically review and update your security measures in case any vulnerabilities are exposed.

Create application forms online with PandaDoc

To conclude, application forms are an essential means for organizations to collect data.

Creating and hosting forms online is a logical next step for scaling up an operation and making it more efficient, so why not make the switch today?

Make sure to check out PandaDoc, along with our library of over 750 pre-built templates for all types of forms

Our app is simple for beginners with features such as drag-and-drop functionality and also comes with advanced tools for experts to create stunning application forms.

By following best practices and choosing a user-friendly form builder, anyone can quickly learn how to create online application forms that will help an organization reach its goals.