Participants Database Quick Setup Guide

Initial Setup

There are several settings that must be set for many of the plugin’s functions to work. On this page, I will walk you through getting the plugin set up and running on your site. The first thing you will want to do is have a general idea of how you want the plugin to work, what information you need to gather and store and how your users will see and interact with that information.

Here is one example of how to set up the plugin.

Let’s just say you want to have a signup form that gathers a person’s name and email address. When they fill out and submit the form, they will be taken to another page and thanked. An email will be sent to them letting them know they’ve signed up and that they can return to the site to add more information to their record. A private link for this purpose is provided in the email.

Meanwhile, the site admin receives an email notifying them of the signup, and provides them with a direct link to the new record.

Here’s How We Set That Up

  1. Place the “[pdb_signup]” shortcode on the page where you want your signup form to appear.
  2. Go to the “Manage Database Fields” page and select the fields you want to appear in the signup form by checking the “signup” column in those fields.
  3. Go to the plugin settings page and click on the “Signup Form” tab.
  4. Set the “Thanks Page” setting to point to the page you want them to go to after they sign up. Place the “[pdb_signup_thanks]” shortcode on that page somewhere.
  5. When the person who signed up clicks on the link provided them in the email, they will go to the Participant Record Page page where they can fill out the rest of the form with information for their record.
  6. Click on the “Record Form” tab and set the “Participant Record Page” setting to point to the page where you want them to go to edit their record. Put the “[pdb_record]” shortcode on that page. This shortcode won’t show anything unless it is visited with the special private link provided to the user in the receipt email.

Setting Up the List Page and Detail Page

When someone visits the site, you can show them a list of all the people who have signed up. Each name on the list can be clicked to take the user to a detail page showing all the public information in their record. This is how to set that up.

  1. Place the “[pdb_list]” shortcode on the page where you want the list of participants to go.
  2. On the “Manage Database Fields” page you can determine which columns (or fields) get shown in the list. This is under the “Display” column and you give each field you want to show a number depending on what order you want them to appear in. Zero means it won’t show at all.
  3. On the page where you want the record detail to show, place the “[pdb_single]” shortcode. This page won’t show anything unless it is visited using a link with the ID of the record to show in it.
  4. On the plugin settings page, under the “List Display” tab, set the “Single Record Link Field” to the field in the list where you want the link to the detail page to go.
  5. Next, set the “Single Record Page” setting to point to the page where you put the “[pdb_single]” shortcode.

Now, go to the “Add Participant” page in the admin and enter a test record. You can now test the plugin functions to see how it all works.

4 thoughts on “Participants Database Quick Setup Guide

  1. Hi there!

    Thank you for this plugin!

    I have a query, is it possible to use Gravity Forms and collect information about potential members? If so, can you pont me in the right direction?


    1. Participants Database provides it’s own forms for collecting data, so it does not normally get data from forms generated by other plugins. If you have coding skills, you can write a script to connect the two if you need.

  2. Hi,

    Thank you for the Participants Database, it will be very useful. I have a few questions:
    1). On the Entry Form:
    – The following fields are running on top of each other (Mailing LIst, Photo, and Website). How can I add more space
    2). on the Membership List page –
    – THe information looks squished, how can I fix this?
    3). How can I get the photo to show that the user uploaded?

    Thank you in advance for any help that you can give me.

    1. Hi Joy,

      The plugin pretty much leaves the formatting up to the WP theme, it doesn’t have settings for spacing and that kind of thing. The best way to make things look the way you want for the plugin displays is to use the “custom CSS” plugin setting to add your CSS rules.

      For your list display, there is a limit to how many columns you can display, give the width you have to work with, so you just need to reduce the number of columns, or perhaps use a different template for your page that gives you more horizontal space.

      On the photo, I do see the photo on your single record display, so I’m not sure where it is you want to see it that you are not.

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