Mastering Webflow CMS: Automating CMS Entries with Form Submissions
Webflow has revolutionized the way we design websites, making it easier than ever to create beautiful, interactive web experiences. But what about when it comes to managing and automating content with Webflow's CMS (Content Management System)? Specifically, how can we automate CMS entries with form submissions? This is a question that has been raised by many Webflow users. Let's dive in and explore solutions to this problem.
The Problem: Automating CMS Entries with Form Submissions in Webflow
As Webflow users, we often find ourselves in need of creating new CMS items directly from a form submission. For example, we might want to create a new blog post, a new product listing, or a new user profile each time a user submits a form. However, this functionality is not natively supported in Webflow. As a result, we're left with the task of manually creating these new CMS items after a form has been submitted, which can be time-consuming and inefficient.
The Discussion in the Webflow Community
Many users have voiced this concern in the Webflow forum. The consensus seems to be that while it is technically possible to achieve this functionality using third-party services like Zapier or Integromat, it would be much more convenient if Webflow supported this natively.
Gene, a Webflow user, points out that Webflow already allows forms to upload content. So why not extend this to allow certain forms to create CMS entries? The current workaround, using an external system like Zapier, seems like a “silly solution” to him.
The main issue here is the need to rely on a secondary platform, which can be costly and may introduce complications in data syncing. As Ibrahim, another user, puts it: "I am not expecting Webflow to rebuild a Zapier, just build it such that Webflow Forms work with the Webflow CMS rather than outsource it to a paid platform."
A Solution: Using Third-Party Services
While native support for this feature in Webflow is still awaited, there are ways to automate CMS entries with form submissions using third-party services like Zapier, Integromat, or Airtable. Let's take a look at how this can be done.
Zapier is a popular choice for automating tasks between different web apps. In the case of Webflow, you can set up a 'Zap' that triggers whenever a form is submitted on your Webflow site. This Zap can then create a new CMS item in your Webflow site, effectively automating the process.
Integromat offers a similar service to Zapier, but with a more generous free tier. You can set up a scenario in Integromat that triggers whenever a form is submitted on your Webflow site. The scenario can then create a new CMS item in your Webflow site.
Airtable is a flexible platform that can act as a bridge between your Webflow forms and the Webflow CMS. You can create a base in Airtable that corresponds to your CMS collection in Webflow, and then set up an automation in Airtable that triggers whenever a new record is added to the base. This automation can then send the data to your Webflow CMS via the Webflow API.
While it would be ideal for Webflow to offer native support for automating CMS entries with form submissions, there are workarounds available using third-party services. These solutions can help streamline your workflows and make managing your Webflow site more efficient. Hopefully, Webflow will consider adding this feature in the future to further enhance its already impressive platform.
Pro Tip: Supercharge Your Workflow with Multi-step Zaps
While the solutions mentioned above go a long way in automating CMS entries with form submissions in Webflow, here's an advanced tip that can push your efficiency to another level: using multi-step Zaps in Zapier. This is particularly useful for more complex forms where you might need to create multiple CMS items or manipulate the data before it gets added to the CMS.
A multi-step Zap is essentially a Zap that has more than one action. For instance, you can create a Zap that triggers when a form is submitted in Webflow, then formats the data using one of Zapier's built-in apps (like Formatter by Zapier), and finally creates a new CMS item in Webflow with the formatted data.
This can be particularly useful when dealing with forms that collect data in a format that's not suitable for your CMS. For example, if you have a form that collects dates in the format DD/MM/YYYY, but your CMS expects dates in the format YYYY-MM-DD, you can use a multi-step Zap to automatically format the dates before they get added to the CMS.
To set up a multi-step Zap, simply add a new action step after your trigger step in the Zap editor. You can add as many action steps as you need, allowing you to automate complex workflows with ease. Remember, however, that multi-step Zaps are only available to Zapier's premium users.
This advanced technique will not only save you time but also helps to maintain consistency in your CMS entries, ensuring that your website always looks polished and professional.