Looking to use WordPress to fill PDF forms? Here’s the best (and easiest) way to use a PDF form filler in WordPress.
Approximate read time: 5.5 minutes
It’s frustrating, isn’t it? You just want a simple way to put a PDF filler for WordPress on your website.
It doesn’t seem difficult. You create and then embed a fillable PDF in WordPress. It’s so straightforward you can’t believe you’re even searching for it.
We understand. Sometimes, simple things are tricky for no reason. But it turns out there is a fillable PDF form WordPress plugin that can do what you want.
In this post, we’ll show you how to make a fillable PDF using a WordPress plugin. But do you need a fillable PDF for your WordPress site?
We’ll answer that question in a bit. First, let’s show you how to make your PDF.
How do I make a fillable PDF in WordPress?
So, there are a few steps to get this to work:
- Get a WordPress PDF filler plugin
- Get a form builder plugin
- Create your form
- Create your PDF template
- Add a shortcode to your site for download/viewing
Let’s check it out.
Step 1. Get a WordPress PDF filler plugin
For this to work, you’ll need two plugins: a WordPress PDF filler plugin and a form builder plugin.
So, the first step is to get your WordPress PDF plugin. We recommend using E2PDF. This plugin has been around for a while, has excellent reviews, and excels at making PDFs from form entries.
To start, install and activate E2PDF.
Step 2. Get a form builder plugin
Now that we have our PDF plugin, we need a WordPress form plugin. The form builder will create the WordPress fillable forms so you can create the PDF.
We recommend using Formidable Forms. It's our product, yes. But it's one of the best WordPress form builders, gives you custom fields and spam protection. Plus, it pairs perfectly with E2PDF.
As great as E2PDF is, it still needs Formidable Forms to do everything you want. Best of all, you can use the Formidable Forms free version for this form.
So, get that installed and activated, and then you can start creating all types of forms.
Step 3. Create your form
Once you’ve installed and activated Formidable Forms, go to Formidable → Forms and click Add New.
Choose Blank Form, then give it a name and description. Once you’re done, click Create.
Next, use Formidable's simple drag and drop form builder to build your form. You can use Name, Email Address, Phone, and more.
You also have the option to use one of our form templates to easily create a form. Formidable has 150+ templates to choose from
Once you're finished customizing your form, we'll head to E2PDF to customize your PDF template.
Want to build and customize PDFs with Formidable?: How To Use a PDF Editor in WordPress [Design Your PDFs!]
You can also use Formidable to sign PDFs on WordPress. Cool, right?
Step 4. Create your PDF template
Next, we’ll create a template for our PDF. So go to E2PDF → Templates and click Add New.
This editor gives your template a name, size, and font. Then, under Extension, choose Formidable Forms.
Next, select the form you created in the previous step for Item.
Last, you can click Auto PDF, and the plugin will automatically map the fields.
This will open your PDF editor so you can continue customizing your form and changing the mapped fields. Otherwise, you can click Save and move on to the next step.
Step 5. Add a shortcode to your site for download/viewing
Now, that's great and all. But how do you show the PDF after a user submits a form on a post or page?
For that, we'll use E2PDF's PDF embedder.
To do this, go to E2PDF → Export and choose the template you created. Next, select the dataset you want to export (given you have form entries).
Once you’ve selected that, under Shortcodes, you’ll see the option of Download or View. Select Download, then copy the shortcode.
Now, you’re free to do whatever you want with this shortcode. You can attach it to a form so a visitor can download it after form submission. The choice is yours.
Either way, you now have a form generating a PDF live on your website!
But this seems a bit complicated, right? So, if you want something simpler, keep reading.
Did you know?
You can easily push your form entries to a PDF! With Formidable's PDF add-on, converting form entries to PDF is as easy as making a cup of coffee!
Why you don’t need a fillable PDF WordPress plugin
Let’s look at why you want to create a fillable PDF. Besides tax forms and other official documents, you can create your PDF without a fillable PDF form.
Think about it.
You use Adobe to create a fillable PDF form, but then how do your website visitors fill it out?
We covered the method above, but it isn’t simple or straightforward.
There is another option, though.
You can use a form builder by itself. Create a form with the exact form fields you want, then convert the entries to a PDF.
Seems much simpler, right? You cut out the middleman and make it much more straightforward.
But what form builder does that? (We think you know this answer.)
Let us introduce you to some other things Formidable Forms can do.
Automatically convert form entries to PDF
This is why you came to Google in the first place, right? You want to have a way to fill out PDF forms.
Using our simple PDF add-on, you can have all of your form entries automatically converted to a PDF document.
So, you don’t actually need WordPress fillable PDF forms. You just need a powerful form builder.
And this works for any form: order, survey, contact forms, and many more.
Last, you can choose what you do with the PDF form data.
You can download the PDF file. Attach it to email messages. Or display it as a link for visitors to click and download.
Or, you can use our unique Views feature. 👇
Display your PDFs to visitors
Looking for a way to embed a PDF viewer? Look no further than Views.
Once you receive a PDF from your form, you can display it on the front or backend of your website. This is one extra power you have in your tool belt.
But, how can this help you?
Display the PDF for easy reference for yourself or employees in an employee portal. Or show it to the visitor on your website for confirmation. You could use this to display product order forms as well. The possibilities are unlimited.
Upload files to forms quickly and easily
Want to allow your visitors to attach a file to the form as well?
Inside our drag-and-drop editor, you can place a File Upload field on your form. Attach documents, sheets, or items from their media library in one fantastic form.
It’s easy to create your ultimate WordPress file upload form!
Create forms quickly with templates
We have 175+ templates with Formidable Forms. For example, it's easy if you're a business and want an order form to convert to a PDF.
Our template is ready to get you started quickly so you can customize only what you need. And it's not just for order forms.
Generate custom PDFs
Formidable doesn't stop at just helping you create your forms.
That would be too simple. No, Formidable helps you design and generate your PDF also! That way, your form will look stylish, and your PDFs will look even better!
Plus, Formidable has pre-built PDF templates ready to use with one click!
It's almost too easy.
So, how will you create a fillable PDF in WordPress?
There are many ways to get a WordPress form filler; some are easier than others. You could upload a fillable PDF to WordPress for your visitors to download. Or, you can pair a form builder with a PDF plugin and create one that way.
But these ways are all complicated.
This post showed you how to use a WordPress PDF form filler. We also showed you a simpler way to get your web form entries to a PDF.
And that’s with one plugin — Formidable Forms.
So, check our complete list of features. We think you'll be impressed ☺️.