How to Create a Custom Calculator

To start building your first interactive calculator, you'll need an active Shout account. If you haven't created one yet, now is the perfect time to do so!

Signing up is quick, easy, and we offer a 14 day free trial of the Pro plan. This means you can explore the full potential of our calculator builder without any limitations.

How to create a custom calculator

  1. Log into your Shout account
  2. Click the + iconCreate Calculator Button
  3. Select Calculator
    Create a Calculator
  4. Name your CalculatorName Your Custom Calculator
  5. Select a One or Many calculator typeSelect a Web Calculator Type
  6. Configure your compliance settingsOnline Calculator Compliance Settings
  7. Click New Question in the Form menuAdd Questions To Online Calulators
  8. Select a question type
    Most question types can be used in calculators, we'll devote a section listing these a bit further down. Interactive Calculator Question Types
  9. Add values to your question answersAssign Values To Calculator Questions

Building a Formula

Once you've added questions to your calculator, you can start building a formula. To make this as clear as possible we'll build an formula based on an example of a pricing quote calculator.

To create a calculator formula, you must first navigate to your results and select "Add New Result": Add Formulas To Calculator Results

Pro Tip: You can add new results via the Calculator Results exit page or the Section Results.

1. Formula Setup

After you've clicked "Add New Result", a popup dialogue will appear where you can give name and description to your formula.

Build a Formula For Web Calculators

  • Heading: Text in this field will act as the title for the results section. For our example, this will be "Total Cost".
  • Description: A field for you to add additional information regarding the results. For our example, this will read "Totals may differ from final quote dependant on tax".
  • Image: Import an image to display alongside this result, e.g. a logo.
  • CTA/ Button: Add a button below this result to send those who click it to an external URL, e.g. your website.

2. Create a new formula

To find the formula builder, click the + icon at the top of the popup: Create a New Calculator Formula

The formula builder will then appear:

Simple Formula Builder For Web Calculators

We recommend giving your formula a unique name, so you can easily identify it when choosing which results to show:

Name Your Interactive Calculator Formula

By default, all questions that can be used in your formula will be present.

To add questions into your formula, you can drag and drop them in from the Question data section on the left:

Drag And Drop Formula Builder For Custom Calculators

Questions you add to your formula will be highlighted in blue in the questions sidebar.

In our example Price Quote Calculator, we have two fields:

  1. Select a Plan
  2. Select a Number of Seats

So, for the purposes of this example we want to add the cost of the subscription and the cost of individual seats up.

Our first question is a multiple-choice, where value can be assigned to individual answers:

Assign Values To Calculator Fields

Our second question is a slider, where the values are set as the numbers along that slider (e.g. 0-10).

Define Values In Formulas

So, we need to define the cost of the "seats" in our formula. Let's say we want to price it at $75 per seat, we'd build this formula: Q_1+(Q2*75)

Create Formulas To Calculate Results

Make sure to hit "Save Changes".

Pro Tip: You'll also see above that if you add test values into the corresponding fields on the left, we'll calculate a test results for you at the bottom of the formula builder.

Displaying Results

Now that you've set up your formula, you can head to the results page to see it in action:

Show Calculator Results

You can also enable results to be calculated in real time as respondents answer questions:

Show Calculator Results Next To Calculators

After enabling this, your results will be displayed on the right of questions as respondents answer them:

Results Displayed Next To Quesitons

We can also add more formulas to provide a break down of the costs involved:

Add Multiple Formulas To A Results Section

Calculation Ranges

Incorporate ranges into your outcomes whenever they prove essential. You have the flexibility to set both upper and lower limits in percentages. For instance, if your formula yields a result of $350 and the upper and lower bounds are defined at 10% each, the display will read as '$315 to $385'.

Add Ranges To Custom Calculator Results

Adding Variables

It's also possible to add a Prefix or Suffix to your final results. Common prefixes for online calculators are $, £, and €, whilst common suffixes are lb, kg, and %.

Add Prefix And Suffix To Calculator Results

Decimal Places

You also have the ability to customize the number of decimal places that display with your results.

Add Decimal Places To Calculator Results

Testing Values

You can use the Test Value fields below questions in the formula builder to test if your formula is working as intended.

The calculation will appear at the bottom of the formula builder.

Test Values In The Formula BuilderChanging Question IDs

By default, your calculator questions will be assigned a number that displays in the formula builder.

This number can be customized in the Name/Id fields beneath a question.

Change Quesiton IDs For Formulas

This can help you easily identify questions in your formula.

Calculator Question Types

Any question type that can have a value applied can be used to build formulas. Here's a list of the available question types below:

Standard question types

  • Multiple-choice (Single-select)
  • Multiple-choice (Multi-select)
  • Opinion scale
  • Slider
  • Binary Yes/No
  • Net Promoter Score
  • Star rating
  • Dropdown list
  • Multi-select dropdown list

Multi-factor question types

  • Matrix (common scale)
  • Multi-factor slider
  • Multi-factor scale

Numeric question types:

  • Decimal
  • Integer
  • Age
  • Money/currency

You can also add any other survey question types or form fields to calculators to collect research data or personal information.

Calculator Operators

When building your formulas, you can input the following basic operators using your keyboard:

  • + (Addition)
  • - (Subtraction)
  • * (Multiplication)
  • / (Division)

You can also employ IF statements and other functions available in Excel formulas.

Find out more about our basic and advanced operators.