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The complete guide on building advanced forms with Airtable

If you are a maker, you probably already know this platform for creating and sharing relational databases. But what may surprise you is that there is a tool to create even more sophisticated forms, like partial form submissions or prefilled forms.

In this guide, we will address some of the most common use cases that you can build with Airtable and Arengu but, first, let’s see how to integrate these tools.

How to integrate Airtable and Arengu

To start using them, just create a form in Arengu and include the Airtable native actions in its server-side logic flows. Drag and drop fields to create a custom form and choose the native actions you want to use to build the flow.

1. Configure Airtable columns

Simply match the field type of the form with the field type in Airtable. To change the field type in Airtable, click on the triangular icon of the column and then on the Customize field type option.

You can use the Single line text or Long text field type for practically all cases, except if your form includes Choice answers. If you have used choice fields in the form, select this type of field also in the Airtable column where you want to store that data. 

Note that both Arengu and Airtable fields are key sensitive, so to reference the columns in forms and flows, remember to respect the exact spelling

2. Set up the native actions

Once you have added the Airtable native actions to your flows, to integrate them copy and paste on them:

  • The API Key of your Airtable account.
  • The Base ID of the project that you want to integrate.
  • The name of the table that you want to use to store form data.

This is all you need to integrate the two tools but, if you need help knowing where to find this data, you can take a look at the getting started guide.

3. Reference and recall variables

To reference the values in the Fields section of each action, write the name of the column in Airtable in the first input and then get the proper variable by clicking on the plus button.

You can also define custom variables with the Store state variable action and then recall them both in the form and the following flows. For example, you can use them to prefill or configure form fields, or to store the ID of a record to update its data.

4. Include Airtable formulas

The List records action allows you to use Airtable formulas to find any data in your tables. To use them, simply copy and paste the corresponding formula in that field in Arengu. It will be applied when you run the flow.

If you want to know more about building Airtable formulas, you can check out the official docs.

Use case 1: Signup form with data enrichment

Easily send the data from your registration forms to Airtable. Store your users' data in Airtable and create the database you need to get to know them better.

Create a fully customized registration flow integrating any service with an API, including data enrichment services like Clearbit.

Integrate this service simply by copying and pasting the API Secret key of your Clearbit account and referencing the user’s email, and start collecting professional data from your potential clients.

Use case 2: Partial form submissions

Thanks to Airtable and Arengu, you can now build multi-step forms whose responses will be saved when just going to the next form step. This way, if users do not submit the entire form, we will keep the answers they have given until the moment of leaving it.

Users will not notice any different behaviour on the form, they will simply fill in the fields of each step as far as they want. However, if the user does not finish and submit the form, the given answers will be automatically saved in Airtable.

To make it work, in addition to the multi-step form, you only need to create a single flow that will be used in each step of the form. This flow will check if there is a record with that email in Airtable to update the data and, if it does not exist, create it.

If you have ever lost valuable information about your potential users because they left a form before submitting it, this use case is for you. Do you want it? Check out the tutorial on how to build this use case.

Use case 3: Prefill form with Airtable data

Do you need to allow users to complete or update their profile data? Now you can build a multi-step form that allows users to check their profile data and update or confirm it.

This form will first verify users' identity by sending them a temporary code and then it will get, display and update the profile data stored in Airtable.

To build this use case, you just need to create the form and three easy-to-set up flows:

  • A flow to generate and send a one-time password (OTP) by email.
  • Another flow to verify the OTP, check if there is a record in Airtable with that email and, if it does not exist, create it.
  • One last flow to update the profile data in Airtable. 

Do you want to try it? Check out the tutorial on how to build this use case.

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