Over the months I've been running this blog I've come to realize some visitors would like to talk about topics other than those I've posted. Some have asked questions through comments to existing posts, others by emailing my Blogger profile. This works to some degree, but I think it's better to provide a visible obvious point of contact to discuss other topics. Forms are a nice solution, but Blogger doesn't provide that ability out of the box. After some investigating, I found Google Docs have an excellent Form feature.
Forms with Google Docs
Google Docs provides a great online resource for authoring and collaborating on typical office documents and spreadsheets. They also include a feature that allows you to create a web form, which processes entries into a spreadsheet automatically. You do not need to know how to program, just some very basic skills to create a form using a graphical designer. You may even receive email notifications when a form is submitted, although you're left to review the spreadsheet manually. Still, as a completely free tool you may already access thanks to your Google account with Blogger it's a fantastic and easy option.
Creating your first Form
I'm trying something a little different on the instruction front this time. I've recorded a short screen cap video showing how I create a basic question form using Google Docs and configure it to notify me by Email each time a form is submitted. Unfortunately, I was unable to lay down a good voice over, for some reason the headset I've used for years sounds completely garbled. Still, the video shows the steps, have a look below...
Once you've created a form you'll need to embed it onto your blog. Click on the form in Google Docs, then select Form->Embed form in a Webpage to obtain the embed code. I recommend inserting it as an into a Blogger Page, then adding a link to that page. Keep in mind you may need to adjust the inframe height and width to achieve the desired look. I've done exactly this for a Contact Me page and it seems a reasonable setup for free form support for your blog.
Google Docs makes it easy to accept form submissions from your visitors. This gives you an additional way to interact with your audience. It's easy to setup and include and there's even an online spreadsheet where you may review past submissions. Forms are an excellent tool for adding value to the experience of your blog. Give it a try, they're free after all!