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Adobe FormsCentral Service Retired – And Alternatives





Small businesses relying on Adobe’s FormsCentral to collect information from their customers or employees will have to find an alternative soon.

Adobe has decided to scrap FormsCentral. Why? After three years, not enough people were using the service to justify keeping it online.

This service from Adobe allows users to create forms like registrations, applications, or even order forms and distribute them online. Forms can be created in either PDF or web-friendly formats.

The back-end part of FormsCentral collects the information into spreadsheets that are sortable and can be used to generate graphs and charts.

The service will only be active for about another four months. At the landing page for Adobe FormsCentral, via Adobe Document Solutions, a beige box announces:

“FormsCentral will be retired on July 28, 2015. The service is fully functioning and available through June 22, 2015.”

An FAQ page at Adobe.com notes that after June 22 and until that late-July date, forms information will be in “Read-Only” format. No new forms can be created or distributed after June 22, 2015.

Also, beginning on June 23, any forms that have been created and distributed via FormsCentral will not work.

FormsCentral is a paid service. Adobe will stop billing for FormsCentral in March, the company says. Monthly subscribers will not be charged after February. Annual subscribers will get a prorated refund on this discontinued service.

The forms that were created in FormsCentral can still be useful after the service is stopped. Adobe says that both the PDF and Web forms that have been created can be re-purposed to still collect information. Community expert and author Donna Baker provides a brief tutorial in the Adobe Community.

FormsCentral was introduced more than three years ago, but apparently was not popular enough for Adobe to continue maintaining. On its Retirement FAQ, Adobe’s Rebecca Staley explains:

“Unfortunately, not enough people have chosen this path. As we look to the future, and all the opportunities ahead, we need to focus our efforts on new areas of growth. Our focus will be to continue to provide world-class PDF creation products and cloud-based services that enable our customers to work with PDFs anywhere, on any device.”



Adobe FormsCentral Alternatives

Luckily, Adobe isn’t the only game in town and there are now a whole host of options as alternatives.

A few Adobe FormsCentral alternatives include SurveyMonkey, JotForm, WuFooFormstack and Cognito Forms.

FormsCentral users may have been taking advantage of PayPal integration available with the service. Adobe says that all the other alternatives, except for SurveyMonkey, offer PayPal integration.  WuFoo  is now owned by Survey Monkey.

ADDED – list of Importers for Adobe FormsCentral Alternatives:

JotForm shared this importer for those who wish to transition to JotForm:  http://www.jotform.com/formscentral/.

FormStack shared its importer for those wanting to transition to FormStack:   https://www.formstack.com/features/form-importer.

Image: Adobe Document Solutions

12 Comments ▼

Joshua Sophy - Assistant Editor


Joshua Sophy Joshua Sophy is the Assistant Editor for Small Business Trends and the Head of Content Partnerships. A journalist with 20 years of experience in traditional and online media, Joshua got his start in the rough and tumble newspaper business of Pennsylvania's coal region. He is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists and was a beat reporter covering daily news. He eventually founded his own local newspaper, the Pottsville Free Press, covering his hometown. Joshua supervises the day-to-day operations of Small Business Trends' busy editorial department including the editorial calendar and outgoing assignments.

12 Reactions

  1. It is difficult time for FormsCentral users. We’d like to make switching from FormsCentral to JotForm as easy and seamless as possible. We are building migration tools to import both forms and form data to JotForm. You can find more details about switching to FormsCentral here: http://www.jotform.com/formscentral/

  2. JotForm employee here.

    Thanks for sharing this information with everyone. Adobe was gracious enough to refer their customers to JotForm when they announced their product’s retirement. Here’s a really easy way to integrate your FormsCentral forms over to JotForm: http://www.jotform.com/formscentral/

    Cheers!

  3. Aira Bongco

    I always hate it when things like these happen. It is always a bummer to see services close down especially if you are using it in your business. While I know that it is because of lack of users, it is still needed by the users that currently use it. Oh well, I guess we have no choice but to move on when things like these happen.

  4. Tough industry when even Adobe can’t get enough customers to support the service. Glad there are still alternatives out there though.

  5. This breaks my heart! FormsCentral was SO easy to use! I could make really nice looking registration forms, track the information, and make corrections and adjustments if an error was made in the information that had been entered.
    I understand the reasoning, but will miss it…. very much!

  6. Is there a way to import fillable PDF’s that you have been using on AdobeFormsCentral, or only web pages?

      • Don’t bother about Jotforms fillable PDF forms. I have just wasted time and money trying to convert a Jotform to a PDF fillable form and the result is really bad. Unclear, some content blurred and many other problems. I am sure their cloud product is very good but my clients require fillable PDF forms to save to desktop, revisit and submit. Jotform acknowledge there is a problem and claim to have had a senior developer working on it for over a week. Let’s see what happens.

  7. mm… Why not take the chance to implement this functionality stright to your business website, so you can mix it up with other information on your databases?

  8. Just a quick note from an employee at MedForward. For medical applications, user may also want to consider MedForward Forms.

  9. Hey everyone,

    Jotform, Formstack, etc. are all good alternatives to Adobe.

    However, for those looking for something that will take them into the future of online forms and automated workflows, I’d ask you to consider Blitzen.com. We’re a startup, not launched to the public yet, but we’re getting there and will be there before Adobe pulls the plug.

    Our first live user is, well, us! The customer discovery survey on our website automatically creates a contact in Pipedrive (CRM), a new subscriber in MailChimp (email marketing), an instant notification in Slack (internal communication), a new entry in a Google spreadsheet (survey data), and a visualization of the survey data within Blitzen (analytics). This all happens as soon as someone fills out our form and clicks, “Submit”–and it all happens without anyone having to write any code.

    This is just the very beginning of what we’re looking to do. We’re looking to eliminate the repetitive and manual tasks you don’t want to do, but have to do.

    I’d be happy to chat with anyone, discuss your current use of forms and the repetitive tasks you might want to automate. Just say “hi” at hello@blitzen.com.

    Cheers,
    Josh

  10. Another user-friendly alternative is 123ContactForm.com. The transition is smooth and safe. It’s an excellent switch for those that have no coding skills, but also for web designers, NPOs and companies from many fields. http://www.123contactform.com/html/adobe-formscentral-alternative.html

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