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How to Create Online Polls and Surveys on WordPress using WP-Polls

How to Create Online Polls and Surveys on WordPress using WP-Polls

WordPress, as a robust and user-oriented content management system, offers website owners a rich set of third-party plugins to interact with their blog readers. For example, this software empowers people to display a live FAQ page on their WordPress websites so as to boost site popularity and SEO rankings.

At present, there is a large number of bloggers choosing to create online polls and surveys in order to figure out the opinions and feedbacks of visitors and readers. More than that, it’s a great way to make your website more impressive and personalized by adding some hot topics or issues. Here, we would like to walk you through the simple and quick way to accumulate information from visitors by using a WordPress plugin – WP-Polls.

What Is WP-Polls?

WP-Polls, as one of the most customizable survey plugins, has been largely simplifying the process of putting surveys online. In the further, this plugin enables each user to add a poll to their WordPress’s blog pages or posts through CSS styles and templates. It is free to download with tons of available editing options that all you need to succeed online.

In terms of industry reputation, WP-Polls has been highly rated by the general public with over one million downloads. In the meantime, according to users’ online votes, this plugin has got a satisfying rating of 3.7 out of 5 stars. When it comes to the system requirement, it requires 3.9 or higher version of WordPress and is compatible up to the 4.1 edition.
Website: https://wordpress.org/plugins/wp-polls/

Create an Online Poll

How to Set Up WP-Polls on WordPress Website?

Generally speaking, there are two ways to set up this WP-Polls plugin, That is to say, you can choose to install this plugin through “sider.php” file manually, or to use automatic installation through the dashboard of WordPress. Frankly speaking, it is highly recommendable to choose the latter approach especially for those who don’t know PHP codes well.

In view of the detailed steps to start WP-Polls, you are supposedly to go to “Plugins > Add New” firstly. And then, all you need to do is to “Install” and “Activate” it by clicking on the correspondent buttons. If completed, you can go directly to the “Installed Plugins” area to check and edit this plugin as is showed in the following screenshot.

Create an Online Poll

Notes: If you want to learn more about the details, there is a well-documented plugin installation tutorial for your reference.

How to Customize this WordPress Plugin?

Once you have set up WP-Polls, you will notice that there is a “Polls” icon lying in the right sidebar of your dashboard as follows. As you may notice, there are four editing options available there, including “Manage Polls”, “Add Poll”, “Poll Options” and “Poll Templates.” Here, we will explain how to make proper settings on those options side by side.

Create an Online Poll

Add Your Polls
To begin with, you will need to go to “Add Poll” section to add a new poll to your WordPress website. Next, you will be prompted to fill in the “Poll Question” and “Poll Answers” to suit your own needs. Note that you are capable of creating as many answers as you can, and in the meantime, removing some unneeded questions by clicking on the correspondent “Remove” button.

Create an Online Poll

In addition to that, you are allowed to decide the maximum number of chosen answers in the “Poll Multiple Answers” section. At the same time, you can also specify the start time and date for a poll as you like and disable “End Date/Time” by checking the box of “Do NOT Expire This Poll”.

Create an Online Poll

Having done with the mentioned settings, you will have to click the “Add Poll” button to take effect. If nothing goes wrong, you will be notified with this newly-created poll’s ID that is used to embed in a page/post.

Create an Online Poll

Manage Your Polls
As is required in the above screenshot, you shall go into the “Manage Polls” area to take an overall look at your created polls from “Total Voters”, “Start/End Date”, “Status” and “Action” aspects. In the last “Action” area, you may notice that there are three options for you to choose from, including “Logs”, “Edit” and “Delete”.

Create an Online Poll

Beware that each option has different functionalities as is listed in below:

  • Logs Option – It allows you to have a whole look at where your voters come from and what they have voted on a poll. In the further, you are able to delete all logs for this poll.
  • Edit Option – It enables you to revise your poll’s questions, answers, total voters and start/end time. Plus, you can click the “Edit Poll” button to put all changes into practice.
  • Delete Option – It empowers you to delete your poll by only clicking on the “Delete” button.
  • Make Settings on Poll Options
    In the section of “Poll Options”, you are empowered to make many personal settings of your preferences. In the following, we will introduce the detailed functionalities of each option.

    • Poll Bar Style – You will need to specify the poll bar style, background, border, height.
    • Polls Ajax Style – You can choose to show loading and fading in/out images for a poll.
    • Sorting of Poll Answers & Results – You should choose the way to show a poll’s answers and results.
    • Allow to Vote – You are able to define which one will be allowed to vote for a poll.
    • Create an Online Poll

      On the other hand, you are able to decide the poll logging method and the number of polls displayed on each page. Pay attention that the “Poll Archive URL” is of great important to add the “Polls Archive”, and we will discuss about it later. By the way, you can customize the way to show the current active and expired polls. Do not forget to “Save Changes” in the end.

      Create an Online Poll

      Create the “Polls Archive”
      To add the polls archive, you only need to go to “Pages” and “Add New” firstly. Next, you can put any title that you need in the post title section, which is similar to create a post/page. However, special attention should be paid that you should change the auto-generated permalink into the URL mentioned in the “Poll Archive”.

      Create an Online Poll

      As is showed in the above screenshot, you are required to put the following short code into your post body before publishing this “Survey Page”.


      Modify Individual Colours for Every Poll’s Bar
      If you are not satisfied with the default colour for each poll sidebar, you will need to go to “Plugins” > “Editor” and find out the “wp-polls/polls-css.css” file. If done, you may need to paste the following codes to the bottom of the mentioned file as follows.

      .wp-polls-ul li .pollbar{ transition: background 0.5s ease-in-out; }
      .wp-polls-ul li:nth-child(01) .pollbar{ background:#4ebbff}
      .wp-polls-ul li:nth-child(02) .pollbar{ background:#66cc9a}
      .wp-polls-ul li:nth-child(03) .pollbar{ background:#aad34f}

      If successful, you will notice that your archive poll page will look like the following screenshot.

      Create an Online Poll

      Display Your Polls/Surveys on a WordPress Site
      At this place, we would like to showcase how to display your polls/surveys by managing WordPress sidebar. To do so, go to” Appearance” > “Widgets” and you will be presented with plentiful options on your WordPress site. Here, you should find out and drag this “Polls” widget in the long list of “Available Widgets”. And then, you need to activate it by putting it into the right “Main Widget Area” or “Secondary Widget Area”, which is up to you.

      Create an Online Poll

      As is mentioned in the above screenshot, you will be prompted to fill in your poll’s title and decide which polls you want to exhibit under your surveys. In the meantime, you are also allowed to decide whether to show the created “Polls Archive” page under your surveys. Here, we set all options as default and our polls finally appear in the WordPress sidebar as is showed in the following image.

      Create an Online Poll

      Note: If you don’t want to display your poll in the sidebar, you may consider using the following codes to put it in a WordPress site’s header or footer. Note that, the “XX” stands for the ID of your created poll.

      <?php if (function_exists("vote_poll") && !in_pollarchive()) { ?>
              <h2>Your Online Poll Headline</h2>
                  <li><?php get_poll("{poll id}");?></li>
              <?php display_polls_archive_link(); ?>
      <?php } ?>


Joyce is a professional writer & SEOer who loves trying new things and sharing the experience through blogging. She loves clean design, playing with different WordPress themes, SEO, etc. Very often, you could find her in various WordPress event as invited speakers.