Compared: GravityView vs Ninja Tables

GravityView vs Ninja Tables: Which is the best plugin for displaying data in a table?

Written by Casey Burridge

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Are you torn between GravityView and Ninja Tables for presenting data in a table on your WordPress website? Choosing the right plugin can significantly impact the visual appeal and functionality of your data presentation. 

In this comprehensive comparison, we’ll delve into the strengths and features of both GravityView and Ninja Tables to help you make an informed decision. Whether you need a robust solution for displaying form entries or want to create interactive tables, read on to discover which plugin is the best fit for your table-displaying needs. 

Let’s dive in!

Overview of GravityView and Ninja Tables

GravityView and Ninja Tables are two different WordPress plugins with both unique and overlapping features. 

GravityView allows you to display and organize data captured through Gravity Forms, offering customizable layouts to showcase form entries on the front end. 

On the other hand, Ninja Tables is a plugin tailored for creating responsive and interactive tables on WordPress sites, enabling users to present data in a structured manner with sorting, filtering, and pagination features. 

While GravityView focuses on transforming form submissions into visually appealing directories and other front-end applications, Ninja Tables is focused purely on data presentation with versatile and user-friendly tables.

Can Ninja Tables display Gravity Forms entries?

Gravity Forms is a powerful form builder plugin used to create complex forms. While Ninja Tables is built for displaying tables of data, there is no built-in feature to directly display Gravity Forms entries. If you need this functionality, you’ll need to use a different plugin, namely GravityView.

Comparing GravityView and Ninja Tables

Now let’s compare and contrast GravityView and Ninja Tables by doing a deep dive into both plugins. We’ll compare both plugins with regards to their data display capabilities, pricing, and more.

Displaying data using different layouts

The GravityView core plugin comes with two layouts: Table and List. The Table layout is well-suited for displaying spreadsheets or numerical data, while the List layout is specifically designed for building directories or profiles of companies/people.

A geolocation directory build with GravityView
GravityView—Maps directory

GravityKit, the creators of GravityView, provides extra layouts with their higher license tiers, such as:

  • Maps: Enables the display of data on Google Maps, making it possible to create geolocation directories.
  • DataTables: An interactive table that updates in real-time and offers advanced export functionalities.
  • DIY: A versatile layout that allows customization using HTML and CSS, providing greater flexibility in design.

Ninja Tables does not support different layout types, as the plugin is focused around displaying data in tabular format. However, there is some flexibility when building tables, allowing users to create pricing tables, feature comparisons, product tables, and more.

A feature comparison table build using Ninja Tables
Ninja Tables—Feature comparison table

Ease of use (user interface)

When creating a new View in GravityView, the first step involves selecting a data source and View Type. The data source represents the form containing the desired entries for display, and the View Type determines the layout.

A View creation screen in GravityView
GravityView—View creation screen

Once you’ve chosen a data source and View Type, you can start building your View using GravityView’s user-friendly drag-and-drop builder. In this builder, you can easily add fields (actual data to display) and widgets (tools for navigating the View, like search bars or maps).

The GravityView drag-and-drop editor
GravityView—Drag and drop View editor

To add a field, click the “Add Field” button and choose the desired field. 

The 'Add Field' button in the GravityView View editor
GravityView—Add Field button

By clicking the gear icon, you can access the field settings to modify the label, visibility, and more.

The field settings window
GravityView—Field settings

You can rearrange the position of fields and widgets simply by clicking and dragging them. At the top of the View editor, you’ll find three tabs: Multiple Entries, Single Entry, and Edit Entry. These tabs allow you to edit different aspects of your View.

The Multiple Entries layout displays each entry sequentially, while the Single Entry page provides additional information about a specific entry. Lastly, the Edit Entry page allows logged-in users to update their entries directly from the front end.

Now let’s talk about Ninja Tables. When creating a new table with Ninja Tables, you’ll have the option to use the drag-and-drop builder, or the default builder. You can also import tables from a CSV or JSON file.

Table configuration screen in Ninja Tables
Ninja Tables—Creating a drag and drop table

The drag and drop builder allows you to drag different “elements” into your table, such text, buttons, or HTML.

Ninja Tables—Drag and drop table builder
Ninja Tables—Drag and drop table builder

It’s worth noting that several of the General and Advanced elements are only available in the Pro plugin.

Custom content

Having the ability to customize your data and tailor layouts to specific requirements is crucial for site builders and designers. GravityView stands out in this respect, offering a robust Custom Content field that allows you to incorporate shortcodes, HTML, dynamic merge tags, and other elements into their tables. 

Furthermore, the Custom Content field supports video and audio player embedding, providing added flexibility when it comes to presenting your content. GravityView also provides a Custom Content widget, which can be placed in either of the two widget areas for further customization.

GravityView—Custom Content text editor
GravityView—Custom Content text editor

Ninja Tables includes limited support for custom content. However, there is a basic HTML element that can be added to table cells allowing you to write your own, custom HTML code. 

The Ninja tables HTML element
Ninja Tables—HTML element

Now let’s look at each plugin’s sorting and filtering capabilities.

Sorting and filtering

The GravityView core plugin offers basic sorting features accessible in the View settings at the bottom of the View editor. Users can sort entries by field and apply date filters. 

GravityView—Filter and sort settings
GravityView—Filter and sort settings

By upgrading to a GravityView + Extensions license, users gain access to the Advanced Filtering Extension, providing more precise control over displayed entries. This extension enables filtering by specific field values and restricting entries to those created by the logged-in user. 

Additionally, GravityView provides a robust search bar widget, allowing front-end customization of search functionality for Views!

GravityView—Search bar
GravityView—Search bar

The GravityView search bar widget is highly customizable, allowing you to add search inputs, adjust input types, and configure the way the search bar functions.

Furthermore, the GravityView DataTables layout includes additional searching and sorting capabilities such as per-column filtering, and field grouping.

GravityView—DataTables column filtering
GravityView—DataTables column filtering

Ninja Tables also supports searching and filtering. However, these features are only available in the Pro version of the plugin.

Ninja Tables—Search bar
Ninja Tables—Search bar

Now let’s take a look at how to edit data from the front end.

Editing data from the front end

Front-end entry editing is a built-in feature available in all GravityView license tiers. Within the GravityView drag-and-drop editor, a dedicated tab allows configuration of this layout, where you can add editable fields. 

GravityView—Edit Entry Layout tab
GravityView—Edit Entry Layout tab

Enabling GravityView’s User Edit option grants logged-in users the ability to edit their own entries, making this feature particularly useful for user profiles and directory listings.

GravityView—Front end entry editing
GravityView—Front end entry editing

Ninja Tables also allows for front end editing. However, this feature is only available in the Pro version. Additionally, front-end editing is restricted to WordPress user data, which you can pull into your front-end tables.

Ninja Tables also allows you to restrict editing to a user’s own entries. You can also select the columns that you want to make editable.

Ninja Tables—Column options
Ninja Tables—Column options

Both GravityView and Ninja Tables allow you to export your data. Let’s dive into this feature in more detail.

Exporting data

GravityView includes an in-built export feature that allows you to export data directly from your front-end table Views. All you need to do is add either /csv or /tsv to the end of the View URL.

The GravityView DataTables layout includes additional export features, allowing you to export data to a variety of formats, including Excel, and PDF.

GravityView—DataTables export buttons
GravityView—DataTables export buttons

Ninja Tables also has an export feature. However, this only allows you to export data from the table configuration screen in the backend. You cannot export data from the front end.

Ninja Tables—Export button
Ninja Tables—Export button

Ninja Tables allows you to export table data to either CSV or JSON format. Okay, now let’s look at the different integrations and extensions supported by each plugin.

Integrations and extensions

GravityKit provides 7 premium extensions that expand the core capabilities of GravityView. Here’s a brief overview of each:

  • Multiple Forms: Display entries from multiple forms within a single View.
  • Ratings & Reviews: Enable users to rate and comment on entries (particularly useful for directories or review websites).
  • A-Z Filters: Introduces a new widget for filtering entries alphabetically.
  • Featured Entries: Mark specific entries as “Featured” to ensure they appear at the top of the View.
  • Social Sharing & SEO: Add social sharing buttons to entries and improve the View’s SEO performance.
  • Advanced Filtering: Utilize conditional logic filters to control which entries are displayed in the View.
  • Integration with GravityKit’s Other Add-ons: Other add-ons from GravityKit seamlessly integrate with GravityView, providing a comprehensive range of enhancements. You can explore the complete collection of add-ons offered by GravityKit to further enhance your GravityView experience!

Ninja Tables also has several extensions built into its Pro version: 

  • Custom filter: Allow users to search in the table for specific data.
  • Conditional formatting: Apply conditions to the table column to highlight cells with colors.
  • Fluent Forms integration: Display Fluent Forms form entries in your tables.
  • WP Post tables: Fetch WordPress posts/pages and display them in tables.
  • Charts: Create charts and graphs from your table data.
  • WooCommerce product tables: Display WooCommerce products in a table.
  • Google Sheets synced tables: Sync tables with Google Sheets.

Now let’s take a look at the demos and free trials available for each plugin.

Demos and free trials

At GravityKit, we offer a demo showcase featuring various example applications that demonstrate the capabilities of GravityView and our additional plugins/extensions. 

By signing up for a free demo playground, you can personally experience GravityView for 30 days, enabling you to explore its features and functionalities before making a decision to buy!

The GravityKit demo showcase
GravityKit—Demo showcase

Ninja Tables aso has a demo site where they showcase a range of live demo tables for you to preview and interact with. While they do not offer a free trial, they do have a free version of the plugin (with limited features) available from the WordPress plugin directory.

Ninja Tables—Demos

Pricing

Let’s compare each plugin in terms of its pricing structure. GravityKit has a straightforward pricing model with three tiers:

  • GravityView ($99): This plan includes the GravityView core plugin with the List and Tables layouts.
  • GravityView Pro ($249): In this bundle, you’ll receive GravityView along with all Extensions and Layouts.
  • All Access Pass ($499): The All Access Pass includes everything in GravityView Pro plus every other add-on available.

Ninja Tables pricing is as follows:

  • Free: There is a free version of the plugin (with limited features) available for download on the WordPress plugin directory
  • Single Site ($79): For use on a single site
  • Agency License ($129): For use on 20 sites
  • Unlimited License ($299): For use on an unlimited number of sites

Summing up the differences between GravityView and Ninja Tables

GravityView offers remarkable flexibility, empowering users to create diverse web applications and front-end interfaces for multiple use-cases. Its intuitive drag-and-drop builder and wide range of extensions facilitate the seamless construction of various layouts, from simple directories to complex data-driven applications. 

Whether displaying user profiles, business directories, event calendars, or review sites, GravityView effortlessly adapts to meet specific project needs. This adaptability makes it an invaluable tool for developers, businesses, and organizations seeking innovative and engaging ways to showcase and manage data on their WordPress websites.

Ninja Tables is a WordPress plugin focused around providing functionality for creating interactive and responsive tables. With its intuitive interface, users can efficiently organize and display data on their websites. 

The plugin’s features include sorting, filtering, pagination, and the ability to import data from various sources. While Ninja Tables does offer a free version, most of the powerful features are only to be found in the Pro version.

GravityView vs Ninja Tables: Which is best for displaying tables?

In conclusion, while both GravityView and Ninja Tables offer valuable solutions for displaying data in tables, GravityView stands out as the superior choice for anyone working with Gravity Forms. Its seamless integration, specialized focus on Gravity Forms entries, and powerful extensions make it an excellent option. 

However, it’s worth noting that Ninja Tables also provides a good solution for creating responsive and interactive tables on WordPress websites, offering versatility for various data presentation needs. 

Ultimately, the decision depends on your specific requirements and preferences, but GravityView’s tailored features for Gravity Forms users make it a compelling and comprehensive choice! If you enjoyed this post, read our comparison of GravityView and Ninja Forms Views next.

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