Exporting Data From Gravity Forms: The Ultimate Guide

"Exporting entries From Gravity Forms". The Gravity Forms logo next to an export icon


Explore all the different ways to export data from Gravity Forms for analysis, reporting, and more. Export entries to CSV, TSV, PDF, and Excel (.xlsx)!

Estimated reading time: 14 minutes

Gravity Forms is the most popular and well-respected form plugin for WordPress. 

Businesses use Gravity Forms to collect many kinds of important data: sales information, survey results, customer contact details, and more.

Data is a very valuable resource and can be used to inform important business decisions. In fact, according to MicroStrategy, 59% of companies use data analytics in some capacity.

But the data you collect using Gravity Forms isn’t that useful if it’s sitting unused in your WordPress database! 

What if you need to analyze Gravity Forms data using third-party tools, format it in a specific way, or send it to other team members or clients?

In this guide, we’re going to show you how to export your data from Gravity Forms. We’ll cover all the different ways to export your form entries, including exporting to different file formats, such as CSV, Excel, and PDF. We’ll also show you how to create reports and send data to remote storage.

With GravityExport, you can export your Gravity Forms data to Excel, CSV, or PDF using a secure, shareable download link and send reports to Dropbox, SFTP, or local storage! Get it for free!

Why Export Data From Gravity Forms?

There are many reasons why you may need to export your data from Gravity Forms. Here are some of the most common ones.

Migrating Your Website

If you’re moving your website to a new hosting platform, it’s a good idea to back up all of your website data, including Gravity Forms entries. 

That way, if something goes wrong during the migration process, you haven’t lost everything! When you’re ready, you can simply import your Gravity Forms entries into your new website.

Conducting Data Analysis

Many companies hire data analysts and business analysts to drill down into their data and discover important trends and insights. This helps companies understand where their weak points are and how to improve their services moving forward.

For example, if you use Gravity Forms to collect customer information from your online store, you could analyze that data to see where most of your customers are from. This can help you refine your overall marketing strategy.

Businesses also use Gravity Forms to collect pre-sales questions, conduct post-purchase surveys or sell products. Extracting this data allows you to analyze it in-depth, rather than relying on the reports available inside Gravity Forms. 

By exporting your form entry data from Gravity Forms, you can analyze it using more powerful third-party tools such as Microsoft Excel, Tableau, or statistical programming languages like Python and R.

Reporting and Record-Keeping

Exporting data from Gravity Forms is also helpful for compiling reports and backing up important records. Exporting entry data as a CSV file allows you to format it in a way that’s easily readable by clients and team members. 

Keeping a full backup of your form entry data is also helpful in case your website gets hacked or your database goes down. This way, you won’t lose the hundreds, or thousands, of important records that you’ve accumulated.

Exporting Gravity Forms Entries to CSV

CSV stands for “Comma Separated Values”. CSV files are plain text files that contain raw data. CSV files often act as intermediaries, allowing you to exchange data between different applications.

CSV files contain lists of data separated by commas, although sometimes they use other delimiters, such as semicolons.

You can open CSV files using text editors or spreadsheet programs like Microsoft Excel.

Exporting Entries Using Gravity Forms’ Built-in Export Feature

Gravity Forms makes it easy to export your data as a CSV file from inside your WordPress Admin page.

All you need to do is log into your WordPress website, hover over Forms in the left-hand menu, and click on Import/Export.

Make sure you’re on the Export Entries tab and then select your form from the dropdown menu. After that, choose the fields you want to export.

Gravity Forms also allows you to export entries within a particular date range or export certain entries based on parameters that you set using conditional logic.

The 'Import/Export' link under 'Forms' in the WordPress sidebar

When you’re done, click on the Download Export File button at the bottom of the page. Your entries will be exported as a CSV file with the same name as your form.

Downloads list in the browser showing a CSV file

As you can see, exporting directly from Gravity Forms is effective and straightforward. However, this method isn’t without its downsides.

First off, exporting form entries this way requires you to be logged into the backend of your WordPress site. Additionally, the user will need to have the role of Administrator.

Why is that a problem? Because handing out admin accounts to everyone who needs access to the data isn’t the best thing from a website security standpoint.

Gravity Forms Reports: Exporting Entries to Excel

Microsoft Excel is one of the most popular software applications for data analysis and visualization. 

Exporting Gravity Forms entries to Excel allows you to extract important insights that can help to improve your business. 

There are two ways to export your data into Excel. You can either export a CSV file and open it in Excel, or you can export your entries directly as a .xlsx file using a free plugin.

Exporting Directly to .xlsx (Excel) using GravityExport

GravityExport revolutionizes the way you export data from Gravity Forms by simplifying the process. Instead of having to log in, navigate to the Export page and manually configure your report, GravityExport allows you to export your form data using a secure download URL.

Better yet, your report will update automatically and there’s no need to log in! Share the link with whoever needs the data. You can also export entries directly to Excel (.xlsx) and combine data from multiple forms into a single file.

Start by downloading the free GravityExport Lite plugin from WordPress.org and install it on your website. (Note that the full version of GravityExport includes additional functionality such as PDF export, Dropbox integration, and FTP upload).

Next, navigate to your Form in Gravity Forms and click on Settings. You’ll see a new tab on the left called “GravityExport Lite”, click on it and then click on the Enable download button to enable the direct download URL.

The 'Enable Download' button on the 'GravityExport Lite' feed page

The plugin will now generate a unique download URL. By typing this into your browser, your Excel report will automatically download to your computer.

The Download URL in the GravityExport Lite feed

If you scroll down, you’ll see different options for configuring your export file. You can choose which fields to include in the report, specify a fixed date range, change download permissions, and more.

Exporting a CSV and Importing it Into Excel

One way to convert your data into an Excel file is to export it as a CSV (using one of the methods described above) and then open it using Excel. There are different ways to do this.

If you have a CSV file, you can open it in Microsoft Excel by double-clicking the file or right-clicking and selecting “Open with” and then “Microsoft Excel”.

Alternatively, open Excel, click on the File tab, select Open and then Browse. Make sure it’s set to All Files (*.*), locate your CSV file, and double click on it.

The Microsoft Excel "Open" window when selecting a new CSV file to open

Excel will display your data according to your default data format settings. You may find this causes issues if your CSV file contains date formats or different delimiters. In this case, you should rather use Excel’s Import Text wizard.

Open Excel and click on the Data tab at the top, then click on From Text/CSV. Browse for the CSV file you want to import and double-click on it.

Excel spreadsheet with the "From Text/CSV" button highlighted under the "Data" tab

Excel will now open the Import Text Wizard, allowing you to configure how your data is presented in Excel. The Import Text Wizard converts your CSV to a .xlsx format and gives you more flexibility regarding how your data is displayed. 

Exporting Gravity Forms Entries to PDF

The PDF file format is one of the most popular text formats in use today. The main reason for this is that PDF files display consistently across different machines, operating systems, and software applications.

Creating PDF files is a great way to share documents that contain specific text styles and formatting. Many companies choose PDF as their main document format because they are secure, good-looking, and readable on almost any device.

Exporting Gravity Forms entries to PDF is a great way to ensure entry data cannot be edited when sent to clients, team members, or other third parties.

Export Gravity Forms Entries to PDF Using GravityExport

Gravity Forms doesn’t come with the ability to export form data as a PDF. So you’ll need to rely on a third-party plugin for this functionality.

The paid version of GravityExport allows you to export your form data to PDF. With GravityExport, you can also create multiple reports that export to different file formats.

To set up a new PDF export, simply add a new “GravityExport Filters” feed, configure the report, and set the file extension to “.pdf”.

A report in GravityExport with the file extension set to '.pdf'

GravityExport will now generate a download URL for you. To download your Gravity Forms entries as a PDF file, simply paste the download URL into your web browser’s address bar and press “Enter”.

The download URL generated by GravityExport

After configuring your PDF export, click “Save Settings”. You can now add additional feeds to set up report that export to different file extensions, with different sets of fields and settings.

The "GravityExport Filters Feeds" page showing one active PDF report feed

Exporting to PDF Using Gravity PDF

Gravity PDF offers a consistent and robust solution for PDF export and the best part is that their basic plugin is free!

The power of Gravity PDF lies in its ability to turn your Gravity Forms entries into professional, custom-branded PDF files. The plugin comes with four different layout templates and you can also add custom content to the header and footer areas.

After installing Gravity PDF, navigate to your Form and click on Form Settings. Here you’ll see a new tab called “PDF” which allows you to configure new PDF exports.

The 'Add New' button on the 'PDF' feed page in Gravity Forms

There is a range of options for customizing the look and feel of your PDF files. You can also enable the PDF export based on parameters that you set using conditional logic.

When a user submits your form, the plugin generates a new PDF file for that entry. If you want, you can send the PDF as an email attachment to either the user, the admin, or both.

Gravity PDF also integrates with GravityView, allowing you to display PDF download links inside a View. This gives users an easy way to download PDFs from the front end of your website.

A user profile on the front end with a link that says "Download PDF".

The Gravity PDF paid plans come with additional templates and extensions to enhance your workflow.

Exporting Gravity Forms Entries to Google Sheets

After exporting your Gravity Forms data as a CSV or Excel (.xslx) file, you can easily import it into Google Sheets for further analysis.

Start by creating a new, blank spreadsheet. You can do this by going to your Google Drive, clicking New in the top left, and selecting Google Sheets.

Next, click on File and then Open.

Clicking on "File" and then "Open" in Google Sheets

You’ll now see the “Open a file” window appear. Click on the Upload tab and click to select a file from your computer to upload.

The "Open a File" box in Google Sheets

Google Sheets allows you to import both CSV and Excel (.xlsx) files directly from your computer.

Export Your Form Data to Remote Storage (Dropbox / SFTP)

Using GravityExport, you can export your Gravity Forms entries to your Dropbox, an external server running SFTP or a local folder on your website’s server.

To do this, simply create a new “GravityExport Save” feed, configure the report and select a storage type.

The different storage options for GravityExport, including Dropbox, FTP and Local storage

Check out the two posts below for full guides showing you how to export data to Dropbox and SFTP servers using GravityExport:

Exporting Forms From Gravity Forms

Along with entries, Gravity Forms also gives you the ability to export forms. This is helpful if you need to move a form from one website to another.

First, log into your WordPress website, then hover over Forms in the left-hand menu and click on Import/Export. Next, click on the Export Forms tab on the left, choose the form you want to export, and click on the Download Export File button.

The 'Export Forms' tab on the Gravity Forms 'Import/Export' page

Your form will now download as a JSON file, containing all of your form settings. You can save it to your computer for easy access later.

Gravity Forms Export: Wrapping Up

Gravity Forms is a powerful plugin that allows you to add forms to your WordPress website and collect important data. But in order to process, format, analyze and share that data, you first need to export it from your WordPress database. 

In this guide, we showed you all the different ways to export your data from Gravity Forms. We also covered the most important file formats such as CSV, Excel, and PDF.

If you’re looking for a way to turn your form entries into professional PDFs, the Gravity PDF plugin is your best choice.

For basic CSV files with limited customization, you can use the default Gravity Forms exporter and If you want to export your data as an Excel (.xlsx) document you can use the free GravityExport Lite plugin.