Forms retaining structure in submisson

How would one receive a form in an email that looks like the form on the webpage?


Hi dontcallmedude. Welcome to the forums. :slight_smile:

You can send HTML in an email, but it’s much harder to style reliably than in a web page. You basically have to code it as if it’s still 1999. But the form is not likely to work in the email. You can’t include PHP or any other server-side language, and you may be able to send some JS, but I’m not sure how reliable that would be.

What’s your aim in doing this?

I have a client who has a job application form on his website, and he wants the results of that form to look like the form on his site. Can this be accomplished via a database?

Do you mean the results in the form of an email to himself? You can certainly style up an email to look something like that, although I don’t see the point, really, as long as he gets the information.

Can this be accomplished via a database?

You could certainly have a database involved, but is it really needed? What does he actually need? It sounds like, when someone fills in the application form, the client needs to receive an email with the details of the application. Is that right, or is something else needed?

Thanks for the reply. It’s appreciated.

It’s not a matter of need. The client is requesting this, and I’m following through. He wants the results to be in the form of the form on his website. I have no agenda as to how it’s done, except simplicity.

My goal is to find out if it can be done and how it can be done.

Does that help?

I guess so. :slight_smile: It sounds like you just need a simple PHP form on the website. Once someone fills in the form, the PHP script sends an email to the client with the submitted information—just like in a typical contact form. That can be a styled HTML email. The only thing to watch out for is that HTML email is pretty tricky. If the client is using something like Apple’s Mail client, then you’ll have a pretty easy time of it, but if he’s using Outlook, it’s time to get out your Voodoo doll and place multiple curses on the people at Micro$oft.

If you need help with the email styling, let us know, but we need to see the form layout on the site first.

Thank you, and yes, the client uses Outlook. He’s a PC user, is there another email client he could use that would fit the bill?

Thanks again! You’ve been a big help.

You’re welcome. :slight_smile:

It would probably be hard to wean him off Outlook. I’m not really au fait with PC email clients, so I can’t really advise, although you can look at what they do and don’t support CSS-wise here:

Actually, though, now that I reflect on it, the problem with Outlook is in styling an email that will look good in Outlook at the same time as in other clients. If you are just doing this for the client’s eyes, and can focus on Outlook alone, it may not be so bad. As I understand it, Outlook is based around the Word rendering engine, and thus I assume that if you can knock up an acceptable layout in Word, you can use it for Outlook too. (This makes life a misery if you need to design emails for all clients, but it’s probably OK if you are just focued on Outlook itself.)