Accepting payment on Google Forms

The way people use forms has evolved over the years, from ticking boxes with pens and pencils to developing complex web pages with a variety of answer options. Tools like Google Forms now allow anyone to receive input from people digitally, making online form use widespread and easily available.

Business owners and others also need to consider how to integrate payments into these forms. Whether you’re registering people for a special event, collecting information for a group order, or building a confirmation page for your e-commerce site, having a simple and effective tool to collect payments makes these forms even more functional and manageable.

Google Forms is a common and easy-to-use tool in these situations, especially since it integrates with the suite of Google products, which can be helpful if you use Docs or Sheets. When it comes to accepting payment on Google Forms, though, you’ll find things get a little tricky. 

These forms aren’t considered Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliant on their own. Put simply, PCI is a security standard mandated by major credit card companies to ensure transactions comply with safety standards. Because of this, you’ll need to forego a straightforward approach and get creative with how you set up payments. 

Pro Tip

Jotform lets you integrate with 25+ popular payment processors, so you can accept payments online via PayPal, Square, Stripe, and more.

Linking out

One basic way of accepting payment on Google Forms is to provide a link to another site. You can connect to PayPal, Google Pay, Apple Pay, or technically any online payment method that your users have an account with. This makes things easier for the different types of customers you interact with (certain international markets, for instance).

The downside is that you have to send users away from your form, which is problematic for a number of reasons. First, you’re adding extra layers of unnecessary interaction to a form that should be as short and painless as possible. Creating more burdensome forms makes for a messier user experience.

On top of that, making your users bounce out increases the chances that they won’t complete the form. The last thing you want is your payment method leading your customers away from your forms instead of making them easier to complete.

Using peer-to-peer payment

A peer-to-peer payment platform, a more formal and streamlined way to integrate payment, benefits from more seamless design than the aforementioned outbound link. Whether Venmo, Cash App, or Zelle, you can leverage these P2P programs using QR codes placed directly into your Google Forms. 

This integration doesn’t feel quite as form-breaking as a link since you can access QR codes through your phone at the same time you’re using a form. Plus, these services typically don’t charge additional fees — a boon to the form builder and the customer.

Even considering that, though, you still have to deal with some issues that come with this method. Despite being a little cleaner in design and execution, you’re still burdened with the risk of user bounce and potentially alienating customers who aren’t familiar with these platforms. 

Rather than rely on these less-than-ideal methods, consider other ways to accept payment on Google Forms.

Using Google Workspace add-ons

Your best bet for accepting payment on Google Forms is a Google Workspace add-on. These external tools are available in the Google Workspace Marketplace. Some of the options are specific to certain uses, such as Neartail, a widget that integrates with order forms for restaurants and other businesses, and allows them to customize forms with their own branding.

Other options, like Payable, require a bit more customization to tailor to your forms. This add-on hosts a separate secure checkout that connects to your form directly. This way, you can easily manage the backend data gathered with your Google Form (e.g., through a connected Google Sheet).

Considering all the options, these add-ons are some of the better techniques available if you want to stick with Google Forms as your form builder. Even so, navigating payment will be a touch trickier and require some creativity.

Accepting payments with Jotform

Instead of trying to force a workaround to accept payment on Google Forms, try using a form generator that’s PCI compliant and makes the operation a breeze. Jotform removes the barriers of bouncing out users, friction-heavy processes, and excessive third-party involvement with a fully customizable interface.

With Jotform’s payment processor integrations, you can leverage nearly 40 different payment methods that fit easily into Jotform’s customizable forms. These allow you to accept card payments, ACH payments, e-checks — whatever suits your users.

If you’re having trouble deciding which of these options to choose from, Jotform even offers a comparison chart to give you a breakdown of what works best for which situation. Choose the purpose of your payment, select a payment gateway, and even specify the country and currency in which someone will make the purchase. 

And remember, no matter which method you choose, Jotform will never charge extra transaction fees for accepting payments through these forms.

Accepting payment on Google Forms takes some navigating and ingenuity. While there are flawed, rudimentary versions of payment integrations, add-ons provide a better experience. But a robust form builder like Jotform is equipped to handle your customers’ payments without confusing them. With Jotform, you can make your forms blend into your site and make your business more flexible.

See also Jotform’s detailed guide about: Google Forms

This article is originally published on Feb 11, 2022, and updated on Jan 26, 2023.

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