First, before we get into the details on the sunsetting of Caldera Forms, let us provide you with a little background information. In August 2019, the creators of Caldera announced that they were recently acquired by Saturday Drive — the creators of Ninja Forms, Ninja Shop, and SendWP. Since then, they haven’t done much besides keep it working with WordPress releases. As some may have foreseen, they recently announced that they are sunsetting Caldera Forms, a migration plugin is in the works, and those that convert to a paid version of Ninja Forms will receive a discount to help ease the migration. They included that Caldera Forms and their support would stay active and up-to-date with the latest WordPress releases until December 31, 2021.
What should their users expect…
What happens on and after January 1, 2022. Do your forms just stop working? Will your sites start giving error messages? All logical and reasonable questions and the very real answer is that eventually, yes, that is exactly what will happen.
If you are still using Caldera Forms after it has officially been sunsetted, there are a few things you can expect to happen. While these things more than likely won’t happen overnight, it is something we highly recommend you act on sooner than later, you’ll understand while shortly.
After December 2021, there will be no more support team for Caldera. So if you are one of those people who aren’t savvy with form building or site design, you’ll want to find a replacement form that has a strong support team and knowledge base available to you. You will also want to make sure you wrap up any currently open Support tickets that you may have.
The plugin will not be updated anymore, this is bad for multiple reasons. This will inevitably lead to the plugin no longer working and, in the meantime, potentially make you vulnerable to hackers. Most updates not only contain bug fixes or software improvements but security patches as well. If bugs aren’t getting fixed and security patches aren’t happening, it is likely only a matter of time before your site and your customer’s personal data are at risk through various exploits. Issues with personal data can lead to some very unwanted legal situations.
One of the biggest issues brought on by no updates is eventually your plugin’s code with becoming deprecated. A prime example is currently happening with the latest PHP version release, PHP 8. PHP 8 brought new code syntax that developers are having to adapt to so their software will function properly and in some cases at all using the new PHP 8. This is true with many of their releases and just like with Caldera being sunset, PHP also sunsets older versions.
Higher Susceptibility to Hacks
In conclusion, while it may not be immediate, continuing to utilize the Caldera Forms code base post-December 31, 2021 will bring an unnecessary and undeniable security risk to your site and your customer base. We also can’t urge you enough to make a move sooner than later it will be an easier migration process if their support is still active should there be a need for their assistance.
So what alternatives are out there….
Best Caldera Forms Alternative
Here at Sprout Invoices, we prefer weForms as the best Caldera Forms alternative. They offer a comparable free version of their WordPress form plugin to Caldera and their paid version has even more to offer. They have a strong support team, a robust knowledge base of step-by-step guides, and are receptive to feedback and improvement suggestions. They even offer a guide for importing forms from Caldera to weForms!
Most importantly, like Caldera Forms, weForms integrates with Sprout Invoices. To connect Sprout Invoices to weForms, you simply need to have both plugins installed and create a form. On the form builder, you can enable the Sprout Invoices integration, map the fields, and you are all set. No additional plugins are required. weForms’ robust feature set along with its ease of integration helps make weForms Sprout Invoice’s preferred form provider.
Ready to get started? weForms has kindly offered a discount to Sprout Invoices users, redeemable by using the coupon code: SPROUTINVOICES10 at checkout.