How to Reduce Contact Form Spam in WordPress

How to Reduce Contact Form Spam in WordPress

Are you bothered by spam messages in your business inbox?

Spam content can arrive in your inbox through your website contact form. This is extremely common and highly inconvenient. Spam uses up your storage space, clutters your inbox, and can lead to missing out on important emails.

You need to take steps to prevent your contact form from accepting spam messages. Besides the problems mentioned above, spambots can cause real harm to your business. Bots send spam messages in an attempt to exploit your email list.

There are a few helpful ways to prevent your contact forms from accepting spam messages. Your best option is to use a great WordPress contact form plugin.

A contact form plugin will include features that will stop spam from coming through your contact form. So, let’s look at a few different ways that you can reduce contact form spam in WordPress.

1. Add reCAPTCHA

CAPTCHA is a verification tool where users are asked to type out letters and numbers from an image. reCAPTCHA is a newer and free version by Google that prevents bots from sending emails to you automatically.

It works by asking users to simply check a button to identify themselves as being human. Using reCAPTCHA takes less time than a CAPTCHA tool, which increases the likelihood of completed form submissions.

If you’re familiar with HTML and server-side processing, then you can add reCAPTCHA to your contact form manually. You’ll need to have access to a site key and a secret key that you can generate from Google’s reCAPTCHA setup page.

An easier way to add reCAPTCHA is to use a WordPress plugin like WPForms. A plugin like this will help you build forms and make it easy to add security features to your contact forms. Just like in the manual method, you need to have the secret key and a site key from Google and then, WPForms will make the rest super simple.

With basically one click of a button, you can add reCAPTCHA to your online forms.


You can also use invisible reCAPTCHA.

Invisible reCAPTCHA works by analyzing the activity on a website. It tracks movements, clicks, and other activities to determine whether the user is a human or a bot. It only invokes the reCAPTCHA action if the user appears to be suspicious.

You can opt to add invisible reCAPTCHA manually or with the help of a contact form plugin like WPForms.


2. Create a Custom Captcha

Another way to secure your contact forms is to use WPForms to create a custom CAPTCHA. A custom CAPTCHA can take the form of a math question or a question where people have to type in a reply.

This is an interactive way to secure your contact form and ensure that the user isn’t a bot. Users prove that they are human by providing answers to simple questions. These challenges change whenever a page is refreshed and creates certainty that only real people are sending messages to you.


3. Enable Double Opt-in

You can also make your form submissions more secure by using a double opt-in strategy. The first time users register to your website or sign up for your email newsletter, they’re sent an email with a confirmation link.

Users need to click on the link in the confirmation email to confirm that they have agreed to become a member on your website. This serves two important purposes. One, it helps you detect fake users. If the confirmation link is not clicked on, then it’s highly likely that the user is a fake.

Two, you ensure that your WordPress website is GDPR-ready and getting explicit consent to send emails to a person. It is critical for businesses to make their WordPress websites GDPR compliant. The GDPR regulation aims to improve users’ privacy and imposes a hefty fine to businesses that fail to comply.

Use a contact form plugin that has integrations with email providers who provide double opt-in features.

4. Use a Honeypot

One of the issues with using a CAPTCHA or reCAPTCHA tool is that users can get frustrated with them. If users feel like filling a contact form is inconvenient, it can lead to decreased form submission rates. You can overcome this by creating a honeypot field for bots.

A honeypot field is an invisible field in your contact form. Humans can’t see it but a bot will detect this field and fill it up automatically. Your form invalidates any submissions where the honeypot field is filled and prevents spam from going through.

Using a honeypot strategy removes the need for your users to actively prove that they are human. It’s more convenient for your audience and keeps your contact forms secure.

Adopt the Right WordPress Form Plugin to Protect Your Inbox

We’ve looked at the key ways you can prevent contact form spam in WordPress. You can use Google’s reCAPTCHA or a custom CAPTCHA, add a honeypot field, or enable double opt-ins.

Take your users’ convenience and your own preferences into consideration when choosing a means to prevent your contact forms from being abused.

Overall, creating a spam-free inbox is easy when you have the right tools in place. Many contact form plugins have in-built features that will help protect your inbox from spammy content. One of the best tools available is WPForms which allows anyone to create great-looking contact forms without any coding knowledge and stop contact form spam at the same time.

Wrapping Up

Now that you know how to reduce contact form spam, you can focus on what matters: taking care of your customers and generating leads. If you liked our article then you might like to read our other informative articles here:

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