How To Make a Google Form and Use It for Your Business

How To Make a Google Form and Use It for Your Business
04 June, 2024 • ... • 17 views
Anastasia Ushakova
by Anastasia Ushakova

Ever find yourself wondering what your customers think about your product? You should just ask them directly, and this is where Google Forms comes in. 

In this article, we’ll dive into the world of Google Forms, and how it can help you take your email marketing game to new depths. Keep reading if you want to learn how to make a Google form with different kinds of questions, how to store and interpret your data, and the best tips and tricks.

What is Google Forms and how does it work?

Google Forms is a free tool from Google that allows you to build surveys, quizzes, or feedback forms easily. It allows you to fill your forms to the brim with various question types, customize them with themes and branding, share them with respondents via email or links, collect responses, and analyze the data.

Overall, Google Forms provides email marketers with a versatile and powerful tool for gathering information:

  • Collecting feedback. Ask your subscribers about your campaigns, their satisfaction with your product, or any other info you need to tailor future email campaigns and services to better meet their preferences.
  • Surveying. With Google Forms, you can build surveys to collect information from your audience about their demographic data, their interests, or their shopping preferences. Use this info to segment your subscriber lists and send more personalized emails in the future. 
  • Generating leads. Google Forms can be useful if you want to generate leads and grow your contact list — just ask your respondents for contact information.

New to email marketing? We’ve got you covered. Check out our blog to find out what marketing is, and some of the latest email marketing trends.

The benefits of using Google Forms

Since way fancier and feature-rich survey builders like Typeform exist, why use Google Forms? While it has some drawbacks, here are some brownie points to consider:

 

  • It’s completely free. Google Forms allows you to send as many forms as you want, and collect an unlimited number of responses. Other survey tools usually restrict the number of surveys, questions, or responses available for free users.
  • It’s cross-platform. Google Forms is accessible from any device with an internet connection, allowing you to create, and your audience to respond, to forms from anywhere. The respondents may not even need to be signed into their Google accounts.
  • It’s easy to use. You don’t need to have technical knowledge or any coding skills to create surveys, quizzes, or feedback forms with Google Forms. What’s more, its interface is very user-friendly.
  • It has room for seamless integrations. Google Forms is part of Google Workspace. This means that it can integrate deeply and seamlessly with other Google tools such as Sheets and Drive for easy data collection and analysis.
  • It allows for quick data visualization or export. Google Forms answers are usually stored in Google Sheets files, and the latter offers charts and graphs for easy data visualization if you need to quickly conclude if there’s a pattern. Also, if you need a deeper analysis of your answers, you can save the Google Sheets file as a CSV spreadsheet and work with it in a statistical tool like SPSS.
  • It offers collaborative editing. Multiple people can collaborate on a single form in real-time, making it ideal for team projects. This means that you can invite as many other users as you’d like to view, edit, or comment on your form simultaneously — more on this later!

How to create a Google form step-by-step

Have we convinced you to create your first survey on Google Forms? If so, follow our step-by-step tutorial and build a perfect form with us.

Sign up for a Google account

Since Google Forms is a tool developed by Google, you need an account on Google to get started. You can either create a personal account or a business account.

Google’s sign-in page for Google Account
  • Click Create account.
  • Enter your name.
  • In the “Username” field, enter a username.
  • Enter and confirm your password.

Here’s a tip: you don’t need a Google email address to set up an account. You can register your account with a non-Gmail address as well.

Create a blank form

Now that you have your Google account, you’re ready to build your first survey. Thankfully, it’s very straightforward. Start by going to Google Forms, where you’ll see Google’s library of pre-made templates, and an option to create your own.

Google Forms starting page featuring pre-made templates and a blank form button

Click on Blank form, name your form, and write a short description.

A screenshot of Google Forms’ survey builder with no questions

Add fields

Now it’s time to add a few questions to your form. Let’s imagine you’re in charge of marketing for a womenswear brand.

Questions can be compulsory or optional for your recipients to answer. To add a new question, click on the (+) icon.

A screenshot of Google Forms with the Add question button highlighted

As you can see, there are several types of questions you can add. We’ll briefly go through each of them now.

A screenshot of Google Forms demonstrating all question types

Short answer

Use short-answer type questions to ask your recipients to provide info that comes in small bits of text, such as their name, their age, or their email address. Despite the prompt, the recipients can enter as much text as they want.

A screenshot of Google Forms with a short-answer question

Paragraph

Paragraph questions are also text-based but presuppose a longer answer. This type of question is perfect when you want a detailed response or feedback.

A screenshot of Google Forms with paragraph question

Multiple choice

Multiple choice questions have several options but the audience can only choose one. In addition to this, respondents can jump to another section of the form depending on their answers — more on that later!

A screenshot of Google Forms with multiple choice question

Checkboxes

Much like multiple choice, checkbox questions have several response options. The main difference is that it’s possible to select several answers at the same time. They also don’t allow the audience to jump to certain form sections based on the answers.

A screenshot of Google Forms with checkboxes question

Drop-down

A drop-down question is similar to multiple choice in that it also offers several options where recipients can only select one response. The only difference is visual — the options are presented as a drop-down menu which saves space and looks neater in longer surveys. You can also drag and drop the options to reorder them.

A screenshot of Google Forms with a drop-down question in the form builder

This is what a drop-down question will look like to the recipients of your survey:

A screenshot of Google Forms with a drop-down question the way it would appear to respondents

File upload

Prompt your audience to upload a relevant file with a file-upload type question. The files will be saved to your Google Drive. If you decide to include this type of question, make sure you only share your form with people you trust.

A screenshot of Google Forms builder’s file upload function

Linear scale

With this type of question, your audience can pick a number from a range. You can start the scale at 0 or 1 and go up to anywhere between 2 and 10. You can also add labels for the lowest and highest choices.

A screenshot of Google Forms with a linear scale question in form builder mode

This is what a linear-scale question looks like to respondents:

A screenshot of Google Forms with a linear scale question

Multiple choice grid

Grid-type questions are easy to build and hard to describe — think of them like a matrix, or a table. Your questions are the rows of the table, and the answers are the columns. Since it’s a multiple-choice question, the recipients will only be able to place one response per row.

A screenshot of Google Forms with a multiple-choice grid question

This is what this question will look like to the recipients of your survey:

A screenshot of a Google Forms survey featuring a multiple choice grid question

Tick box grid

The principle of a tick box grid-type question is similar to that of a multiple-choice grid. The difference is that several answers may be selected.

A screenshot of Google Forms builder with a checkbox grid question

Your audience will see a checkbox grid like this. I selected a few answers just to demonstrate how it works:

A screenshot of a Google Forms survey featuring a tick box grid question

Date

If you need to ask your audience for a particular date in calendar format, this is where date-type questions come in. It’s important to remember that date formats vary around the world (for instance, DD/MM/YYYY in the UK, and MM/DD/YYYY in the USA). Unless your customers are logged in to their Google accounts, their date format will be the same as yours.

For example, this type of question may be useful if you want to ask customers about their birthdays and send birthday emails later.

A screenshot of Google Forms with a date-type question

Time

This type of question prompts users to input a time. Here’s an example:

A screenshot of Google Forms with a time question

Add sections and logic in Google Forms

Some forms only have a handful of questions, while others are much more detailed. To avoid overwhelming your respondents, consider using sections. Sections are useful for splitting your form into parts, allowing respondents to answer one group of questions at a time. 

To add a new section to your form, choose Add section.

A screenshot of Google forms with the Add section button highlighted

Each section has a name and description.

A screenshot of Google Forms’ section builder

But splitting longer surveys into parts is not the only use case for sections — you can also use them for conditional logic. Conditional logic questions adapt to respondents’ previous answers. So, instead of presenting every question to every respondent, your survey will show different questions to different respondents based on specific conditions. Here’s an example.

Let’s say, a respondent selects “Extremely unlikely” in a multiple-choice question about shopping at your store in the future. You want to find out why your customer is not happy about their shopping experience. So, you redirect them to a follow-up section that asks for more details. However, if your respondents select “Likely,” they won’t see the follow-up questions. 

Here’s how to do it:

  • Start with a multiple-choice question — bear in mind that not every question type supports conditional survey logic.
  • Click on the More options icon (three dots), and then select Go to section based on answer.
A screenshot of Google Forms with survey logic tool highlighted
  • Choose the section depending on what your respondents selected. In our example, the respondents who said they were unlikely to shop at our imaginary store again will be directed to a section for dissatisfied customers, while others will just continue with the survey.
A screenshot of a Google Forms survey logic tool

Customize the design of your Google Forms

We have to confess — despite all of Google Forms’ advantages, it does have a drawback. It’s not the most customizable form builder out there — for example, you can’t customize the width and height of your survey. However, there are a few things you can switch up to make your survey match your company branding.

Click on the palette icon in the right-hand corner of your screen.

A screenshot of Google Forms with Customise theme icon highlighted

You can customize color schemes, fonts, and background color themes, as well as select a header image, in the Themes menu.

A screenshot of Google Forms’ custom themes

Sharing Google Forms

In this section, we’ll teach you how to invite collaborators, share your form online, and save it as a PDF.

Collaborate on forms

Easy collaboration is a huge advantage of Google Workspace. Here’s how you can invite other Google users to contribute to your survey.

Click on the three dots icon in the right-hand corner of your screen, and select Add collaborators.

A screenshot of Google Forms with the Add collaborators button highlighted

You can add editors in a similar way you grant access to Google Docs. The options include specific email addresses, everyone in your organization, or everyone with a link.

A screenshot of Google Forms sharing screen

Google Forms sharing settings

Before sharing your survey with the world, don’t forget to check your form settings. This is where to find the settings menu:

A screenshot of Google Forms with Settings button highlighted

Responses settings help you control how responses are gathered and shared. You can restrict users to submitting just one form, permit them to change their answers, or get a copy of their responses. You can also decide whether to collect email addresses and share the form within your organization only or publicly with anyone who has the link.

A screenshot of Google Forms’ settings, Responses

In the Presentation section, you can control what your form looks like. For example, you can display a bar to show progress, mix up the order of questions, or show a link for submitting one more response from the same user.

A screenshot of Google Forms settings, presentation

There’s also a feature that allows you to turn your form into a quiz. It means that there will be point values assigned to questions and automated feedback to responders.

Surveys and quizzes are similar, but their purposes are slightly different. Surveys are a tool for research. Meanwhile, quizzes are not created for data collection but for entertaining or improving customer service. 

Check out our selection of free quiz builders and make your brand communications more engaging.

Share forms online

So, you have finished crafting your form, your collaborators are happy, and your settings are in order — time to send it out to your customers.

Click the Send button in the right-hand corner. 

A screenshot of Google Forms with Send button highlighted

You’ll be presented with all the ways you can share your form.

You can send your form as an email directly to your audience, copy a link you can share on social media or any other platforms, or embed it as HTML. You can also add an editor to your form at this stage.

A screenshot of Google Forms send form view

Please note that there’s also an option to collect email addresses from the respondents. New to email collection? Here’s our quick guide on how to collect email addresses for your marketing campaign

Share a pre-filled form

With Google Forms, you can also share a pre-filled form — this means distributing a survey that’s already been partially filled out. For example, you can pre-populate some sections of your form with information like names or email addresses, to make it quicker for the respondents to fill out. 

To get a URL for a pre-filled form, click on the three dots icon in the right-hand corner, followed by Get pre-filled link.

A screenshot of Google Forms with Get pre-filled link highlighted

Pre-fill your survey, and share it with your respondents by clicking on the Get link button at the bottom of your form. 

The only drawback of this feature is that Google Forms doesn’t save pre-filled links for future use — this means that you’ll need to redo this process each time you want to share a pre-filled form.

Share paper or PDF Google Forms

All of the sharing features we’ve discussed so far pertain to sending the form online — be it via email or links. Google also allows you to share your form the old-school way — on paper.

Start by clicking on the three buttons in the right-hand corner, then select Print.

A screenshot of Google Forms with Print button highlighted

Here, you’ll be able to either print your form or save it as a PDF.

A screenshot of the Google Forms Print view

In the version for printing, grids and multiple choice questions use pill buttons and boxes for responses, while text, date, and time fields have blank lines.

Google Forms responses and how to store them in a spreadsheet

Once a few people have interacted with your questionnaire, you’ll be able to access their answers in the Responses section.

A screenshot of Google Forms with the Responses button highlighted

You’ll see a question-by-question breakdown, with different types of graphs.

A screenshot of Google Forms’ graphs analyzing survey responses

One of Google Forms’ pros is its deep integration with other Google tools — take advantage of this by viewing the responses to your form in a spreadsheet via Google Sheets.

A screenshot of Google Forms with the Link to Sheets button highlighted

You can import your data into a new or existing spreadsheet. This is what our responses look like in the form of a spreadsheet:

A screenshot of Google Sheets spreadsheet with responses from the form

This feature is especially handy for those who want to use conditional formatting features in Google Sheets.

Google Forms add-ons you should know about

Google Forms’ list of features is pretty comprehensive, but it’s not all-encompassing. If you find yourself needing more tools for your survey, add-ons can be the answer.

Add-ons for Google Forms are additional tools you can install to boost the functionality of your forms. With add-ons, you can do things like customize email notifications, collect digital signatures, and more. Add-ons for Google Forms are created by third-party developers as well as Google itself. Some are free, while you have to pay for others.

To access the library of add-ons, click on the three dots button, then select Get add-ons.

A screenshot of Google Forms with the Get add-ons button highlighted

Here are some of the most popular add-ons right now:

A screenshot of Google’s library of add-ons

Some add-ons allow you to partially automate your Google Forms experience. For example, there’s an add-on that will automatically add the “Other” option to your multiple-choice questions. Others will delete duplicate responses, or automatically generate custom documents based on the answers you get.

We recommend the following add-ons to marketing professionals:

  • If you’re already using Google Calendar, check out the time management app Form Scheduler to limit responses and schedule the form based on your events.
  • Trying to create a report based on the answers in your form? Consider Form Publisher — it automatically turns answers from Google Forms into template-based Google Docs files. 
  • Aside from embedding and giving links, you can also share your form via an automatically generated QR code. Use the QR Code Generator add-on to provide easy access to your form on your website, in an offline store, or in an email.

Tips and tricks on using Google Forms

Here are some handy tips and tricks you can use when creating and sending a Google Forms survey.

  • Keep it simple. You don’t want to overwhelm the respondents by asking them tons of questions. If you do need to ask multiple questions in one survey, split them into sections.
  • Reduce bias by mixing up the order of the questions. To do this, go to the Settings tab, find Presentation, and tick Shuffle question order.
  • Use pictures and videos. Pictures and videos make your form more visually appealing, break chunks of text for better readability and add clarification or context to your questions. You can upload files from your computer, use a URL, or search through Google.
A screenshot of Google Forms with image and video buttons highlighted
  • Test your form before you send it to your audience to make sure everything works as intended. To do so, click on the eye icon in the right-hand corner. This will allow you to preview what your form will look like to the recipients.
A screenshot of Google Forms with the Preview button highlighted
  • Integrate with other marketing platforms. If you’re using an email service provider for your marketing needs, it’s worth checking whether it allows for integration with Google Forms — many do! For example, you can connect Selzy with Google Sheets to import the email addresses your Google Form respondents left.

Final thoughts

And there you have it! You’re now a pro at using Google Forms to create surveys, quizzes, and feedback forms.

So, to summarize,

  • Google Forms is a survey-building tool from Google. As a marketer, you can use it to collect feedback from your customers, get to know your audience, or even generate leads.
  • This tool is free, easy to use, accessible from everywhere, and it integrates seamlessly with other Google services.
  • With Google Forms, you can create forms with multiple question types and implement conditional survey logic.
  • You can share your survey with the recipients via email or links.
  • Google Sheets and Google Forms have in-built tools for quick response analysis — and, if you need more insights, you can save the Google Sheets file as a CSV spreadsheet to use it in data analysis software.
  • You can elevate your Google Forms game by using add-ons and automation features.
04 June, 2024
Article by
Anastasia Ushakova
Mathematics major, former breaking news editor, digital content creator, freelance English teacher, bilingual writer. Novice contributor at Selzy. Keen on learning everything about the world and on sharing it with everyone. Hobbies include art, travel, thrifting, photography, playing the Sims, fashion, eating Marmite and generally having a good time.
Visit Anastasia's
Selzy
Selzy
Selzy
Selzy
Selzy

Latest Articles

Selzy Selzy Selzy Selzy