Thanks for the recommendation.
I actually have done the comparison. They are both excellent platforms. Feature-wise, they are fairly equal in terms of capabilities and customization, the both have logic tools, access to the CSS code, multiple ways to insert the forms on your site, etc. However, Jotform also recently added Google’s invisible reCAPTCHA and HIPAA compliance (important for me because I handle some medical clients websites). They also recently debuted a brand new, “one-form-field-entry-per-screen” system for mobile devices, which allows you to create forms that totally eliminate the need to scroll on phones.
There are so many widgets and integrations available for free with Jotform I will probably never even have a fraction of the time required to to learn what they all are, but it’s just good to know they’re available if I need them. I’ve yet to have a form requirement that I couldn’t fulfil through Jotform.
The bottom line factor, of course, is price. The annual price on Machform’s cloud-based small business plan is $250 for the year, which gives you 10k monthly submissions and unlimited forms. That’s a great deal. By contrast, Jotform charges you $390 a year for 10k monthly submissions and unlimited forms (albeit with HIPAA compliance.)
Machform would be a no-brainer for most people EXCEPT, since I was one of the very early Jotform subscribers, I’m grandfathered in at my original price when I signed up 11 years ago, which is… (believe it or not)… only $45.00 a year! That includes unlimited support, 10k monthly submissions, and 1000 payment submissions. Machform integrates with 5 payment processors. Jotform has over 30.
Of the three Machform self-hosted plans, only the Unlimited plan ($249) would be suitable for me, because the $99 plan limits you to 10 sites, and I have way more than 10 forms running. So the $249 self-hosted plan looks like a great deal, EXCEPT, if they upgrade the software, you have to pay 50% of the $249 annual fee to get the upgrade ($125) and if you want support after one year, you also have to pay $125, so there’s really no self-hosted version that is a “one-time-only” charge (unless you’re willing to not get support or upgrades after the first year.) That I don’t like. Jotform doesn’t charge anything for software upgrades, and their customer support is always free (and I have used it quite a bit.) They do have self-hosting as well, but I’ve never looked into it because for $45 a year, I’m happy as the proverbial in
If I ever lose that grandfathered pricing thought, you can bet I’ll be giving Machform a very serious look, as well as the many other form builders that have arisen in recent years (like Google Forms which is 100% free.) Sometimes, you’ve just got so much going on that you don’t have time to start experimenting/investigating with stuff that might actually be better or save you money. I often find myself in that boat.
Just a “for instance”, Google has just rolled out a completely revised version of Analytics that is installed in a totally different manner from their old Analytics. Analytics is something I rely on SIGNIFICANTLY for optimizing my client’s page rank, so now I have to devote all my spare minutes to learning this new version of Analytics just to stay ahead of the curve, because for my clients, ranking #1 in their areas is one of their biggest priorities. Amongst the industry my company caters to specifically (martial art schools) there are a lot of competitors always trying to woo away my clients, and one of the few things I have that gives me a leg up is that those competitors are that they’re all bumbling fools when it comes to SEO. They are never able to outrank my websites in a given town (which I’m sure makes them furious) but that’s because I’ve spent hundreds of hours studying Google’s SEO rules, while they have not. Anyway I digress.
I’m just curious as to whether the OP has found a solution to his problem.