A jQuery UI Site.com Form Widget

Site.com supports Widgets to allow common functionality to be encapsulated into page independent entities.  A form element in Site.com can be used to collect information from a site visitor and create a record in Salesforce.  The jQuery UI library has a dialog widget that can be used to open content in an overlay.  In this article I describe a custom Site.com Widget that I created that displays a Site.com form in a jQuery UI dialog.

Widget Design

The Widget uses jQuery UI which can be downloaded or is also available from various CDNs.  For this example, I just used the Google Hosted Library and added the following to the head script of the sample page I created.

The Widget consists of a single Custom Code Block.

Design View of Widget

The Widget has a Form ID custom property and a Title custom property. The Title is what gets displayed in the title bar of the dialog.  The Form ID is used to select the form from the page.  When a Widget instance is added to the page its Title and Form ID properties can be set through the GUI.  The Custom Code Block contains the following code. (Note this example lacks sophisticated styling or options as that’s not the point of the article, but it could be added.)

The Widget uses the .append() method to move the form with the specified Form ID from the page and adds it to a dialog that is created with the specified title.  It then binds an event handler to the click event of all elements on the page that have a class of “open-{!formId}”.  The event handler simply opens the dialog.

The nice thing about this approach is that the user of this Widget does not have to know anything about invoking JavaScript to get the dialog to open.  All that they have to do is add the class of “open-{!formId}” to the element(s) that when clicked will open the dialog.

Using the Widget

There are three steps to using the Widget on a page.

  1. Add a form to the page and set its ID.
  2. Add the Widget to the page and set its Form ID to the ID of the form and set its Title.
  3. Set the Class Name of the element(s) that when clicked will open the dialog to have the value of to open-<the-form-id>.
A Page with the Widget on it

That’s all that must be done to use the Widget on a page.  There is no JavaScript or any other code that must be written to use it.  Site.com users without coding skills will be able to use it.

The Widget in use appears as the following.

Widget in use prior to form submission
The Widget in use after form submission

12 thoughts on “A jQuery UI Site.com Form Widget

    1. One thing. You might want to hide the original form that is placed on the page since I assume the purpose is to show the form in a modal and not on the page.

      1. Thanks Sean. The jQuery append() method should actually move the form HTML into the dialog, so that it no longer remains on the page, so it is not necessary to hide it.

        However between the time the form loads on the page initially and the jQuery onload executes to call the append method the form could show on the page. For that, the form could have a style set its display to hidden and then alter the open method to change the style to display block or something along those lines.

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