Beacon forms

Overview of the different form types, the features of forms, and how to create them

Updated over a week ago

A Beacon form is a simple yet powerful tool that can be used in a variety of ways to get information from any people that you work with, all hosted by Beacon so you don't have to do any programming or contact your webmaster.

The most common uses for the forms are:

  • Collecting donations

  • Setting up memberships

  • Signing up subscribers

  • Taking event registrations

It can take less than 10 seconds to set up a default form! (mind: blown 🀯) Let's do it...

Quick start: Make a form

  1. Go to Forms in your sidebar

  2. Click Create form. Give your new form a title, and select which type of form you'd like from the dropdown.


  3. Click Create.

That's it! Your form is already live, and you can view it from the View form button in the top right of the page.


Step by step guides

You will probably want to change a few details from your default form, so we've got step by step guides for setting up each type:

For example:

  • Take single or recurring general donations for your charity

  • Make a customised form to display on tablets at an event

  • Create a highly targeted donation form as part of a particular campaign

For example:

  • Collect subscriptions or single payments for a variety of membership types

  • Set up a sponsorship program

  • Create gift memberships to promote as presents at Christmas

For example:

  • Collect new supporters as newsletter subscribers

  • Receive volunteering applications

  • Run a campaign to collect Gift Aid declarations

  • Track new beneficiary enquiries

For example:

  • Sell tickets for a special fundraising event

  • Register free attendees for a webinar event

  • Let conference participants select a specific time-slot

For example:

  • Let supporters see and update their personal details, contact consent and interests

  • Show donors their current subscriptions and previous donations

  • Manage complex applications and save answers to complete over time

For some more use cases for forms, see our frequently asked questions at the end of the document.

Features of forms

There are lots of features for forms, so we've created individual documents for each:

Frequently asked questions

How can I add new questions to my form?

For each question, you will first need to create a place for the answer to live! Think of it like a little answer house 🏑

First decide on the record type you would like the answer to be stored in.

For example:

  • Static information such as a person's date of birth and name are unlikely to change so it's a good idea to store them on the People record type.

  • More transient information can be stored elsewhere. If you're organising an event and need to collect people's T-shirt size, it may be best to store this info on the Event Attendee record type as the person's T-shirt size may change event to event.

First create a field on the desired record type corresponding to the question. It's best to keep the field label short while still describing the content of the question for the sake of neatness (You can flesh this question out on the form itself). For example, a field recording someone's T shirt size can be labelled "T-shirt size" while the question on the form can read "What is your T-shirt size?"

Think about which field type is appropriate. Do you want the form filler to pick from a drop down list? Or would a short text field be more appropriate?

Once you have the field created, you can reference it as a question in your form by adding it as a form field - job done!

What else can I use forms for?

Whilst forms are mainly used for the options above, the flexibility of Beacon forms means that many of our customers have developed other uses such as to:

  • Register volunteers for an event

  • Collect ID details for verification

  • Submit CVs or presentations

  • Automatically create new tasks to contact fundraisers for a challenge event

  • Set up legacy commitments, including assigning executors

  • Download training and educational resources

  • Set up 'Sponsor an animal' programs where donors can select a specific animal from a list

  • Let people enquire about rehoming a dog or cat

Have an interesting usage for Beacon forms? Let us know about it!

Can I embed a form into my website?

Yes. If you'd like a form to run inline on your website rather than as a standalone page, you can embed the form.

Can I add styling to my form?

There are a few ways you can style your forms, with options to bold, italicise or hyperlink your text. You can even add emojis!

Can I add a logo to my form?

Yes, you can add your logo by clicking 'Upload logo'. The maximum image size allowed is 400 x 110 pixels, but if you upload a larger logo we'll scale your image to this size.

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