How to Make a File Upload Form in WordPress

Need to allow users to submit applications? Upload resumes? Spreadsheets? Other documents that are mission-critical to your business or organization?

Want visitors to be able to upload pictures, music files, even video? Adding a file upload feature for your users via your WordPress forms can solve a lot of paperwork overhead.

Problem is, WordPress doesn’t provide a way for your site’s users to upload files. Fortunately, there’s any easy fix! Below, we’ll walk you thorough how to use your WordPress forms to create a file upload form in WordPress!

Add a file upload feature to any of your WordPress forms in 3 easy steps (5 if you want to get fancy!)

Adding a file upload in WordPress for your site’s users is easy. These 5 steps and about 5 minutes of your day are all it takes!

1. Install & Activate File Uploads for Ninja Forms

First, you will need to install and activate File Uploads for Ninja Forms. This will add 2 new features to your WordPress website:

  1. A File Upload field that can be added to any form
  2. File Uploads settings under Ninja Forms in your WordPress dashboard for configuring the add-on and choosing where your uploaded files will be stored

These are all you need to get started!

2. Add a File Upload field to any WordPress form

You can create just about any form that you need for accepting files, or build upon an already made form. I made a simple WordPress contact form where a user can input their name and email address.

While you are populating the field you will now see a new field: File Upload. Make sure you add this to your form, as it is the field your users will be using to upload files.

file upload field in ninja forms builder

You now have a file upload form in WordPress! All that’s left to do is configure the form and publish it!

3. Configure your file upload form settings

Once your form is created, click on the gear next to the File Upload option to open the settings window. From here you can control the field label, file name, save location, and restrictions.

file upload form settings to create a file upload form in wordpress

If you already know the post or page you are going to place File Upload on, I would recommend renaming the file to something you will recognize for your organization.

Under the restriction section make sure you also set a limit on how many files can be uploaded, the size limit of the file, and what file types you will allow. I chose to set a few limits on what types of files I would accept, but If you leave these sections blank then there will be no restrictions.

Take note of the Save to Server option marked in the image above. By default File Uploads will save to your server. If that’s what you want, you can skip step 4. If you would prefer Dropbox or Amazon S3, check the next section!

4. Enable storage in Amazon S3 or Dropbox (if desired)

Depending on the available space on your server and the number/size of uploads you expect, you may not want to store everything on your server. If you want uploaded files to be saved to Amazon S3 or Dropbox, configuration is a breeze.

In your WordPress dashboard under Ninja Forms > File Uploads, click the External Settings tab. Here you can connect to either service using the settings provided.

settings window to connect to Amazon s3 or dropbox

Now just head back to your file upload form and under Emails and Actions, add an External File Upload field. Click into its settings and turn it on, and you’re set!

external file upload form setting

5. Set up additional email notifications for the file upload form (admin notification is active by default)

By default, your admin email action will include a link to the uploaded file. If you want to set up additional notifications to go to others, it’s a snap.

Under the Emails and Actions tab, open the Admin Email action. In the Email Message body, you can select what options from the form will be sent in the email. By default, {fields_table} is set. This will include all fields on the form that a user has filled out. If you want to line item the fields sent, just click the merge tag icon and choose your fields. File Uploads field can be selected alone, if you like..

file upload merge tag to include field in email notifications

Followed these steps? Your users are now set to begin uploading files!

Publish the file upload form you’ve created, and your users are ready to get started! Creating a file upload form in WordPress doesn’t have to be a hassle. If fact, it shouldn’t take more than 5 minutes after you know what you’re doing. And now you do!

You’ll find comments below! What would you like to see out of a file upload form in WordPress to make your life easier?