Designer Web Design - The Greatest Contact Form Ever

Last week I had a French client who wanted a contact form on which visitors could ask questions, request a quote or just generally leave comments. As usual, I started to create a separate page for this as on our Net Quality Web Design Nottingham site where you are reading this article.

Click classic example of a contact form to see this separate page approach.

However, following on from the current trend of everything popping up, the client insisted on a different approach.

Without futher ado, click CONTACT to see the demo.

Greatest Ever Pop Up Contact Form

This utilises the jQuery library which I have already praised in the following articles:

I did not work in-depth on the styling of the demo you have just seen - I used a simple, repeating (and pretty horrific) background image and stuck to shades of orange just to show the contact form in action. The French web site however was designed to the client's specifications and it provided the ‘wow’ factor he was looking for.

What is so fantastic is that I used 2 jQuery plugins which are freely available on the Internet:

  • Eric Martin's SimpleModal lightweight jQuery Plugin which provides a powerful interface for various dialog boxes. This is basically the code that fades out the back page and brings into sharp relief a centrally positioned dialog box. I used this dialog box to display the contact form, and the effect is marvellous.
  • Cedric Dugas's Inline Form Validation jQuery Plugin which is aimed at the validation of form fields in a browser and to provide visually appealing prompts that grab user attention on the subject matter. Validations range from email, phone, and URL, to more complex calls such as ajax processing or custom javascript functions. Bundled with many locales, the error prompts can be translated into the language of your choice.

The joy of using jQuery plugins is encapsulated in their slogan of "Write Less, Do More" and they really do provide a low-cost/high-impact improvement guaranteed to enhance and breathe new life into any Internet site.

Not only can I update Net Quality Web Design Nottingham’s portfolio page with a new and satisifed customer site, but the client is over the moon by the greatest looking pop-up contact form in existence.

The Classic Contact Form is dead. Long live the Classic Contact Form

Although the new pop-up contact form looks really swish and adds the 'wow' factor, there is still a place for the classic contact form. The main advantage of this is that there is room for loads more information to be displayed on the same page.

When a simple comment or user registration or certain pieces of information are required, the pop-up contact form is great. It adds a new approach as instead of being a page within the website, it is more of a wrapper over the website. Any of the pages will cause the pop-up to appear, and once submitted, the visitor returns automatically to the calling page.

When there is more information to show such as opening hours, contact names, address and telephone numbers as well as a contact form, then the classic contact form has the edge. It displays all necessary contact information on one page and provides the user with a clear, one-stop location for all his needs.

Concluding thoughts on the greatest Contact Forms

The choice of which contact form to use will be determined by the purpose.

If a simple comment or request for a telephone call is required, the more modern pop-up form will probably be the preferred solution.

If the form is intended to go alongside other contact information, then the classic contact form will probably be the best choice.

In any case, whichever you chose, make sure you chose one of them...

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