Chapter 3: How to Set Up Online Registration for an Event

Getting people to your registration page is the first step of the event registration process. Once a prospective attendee has  expressed interest in registering for an event, you need to make sure you have a tool setup on your WordPress website that allows people to reserve their space or buy tickets and register for the event.

As an event organizer, your goal is to offer attendees an effortless way to register online so you can maximize event registrations. In this article, we’ll show you how to setup an online event registration solution so your attendees can sign up and pay for events easily and you can sit back and let your system do all the work!

Who could benefit from online event registration software

If you’re organizing an event – whether it’s local, hosted at a destination, or virtual – you need to use online event registration software.

Unlike a regular form builder or paper forms, event registration software is designed specifically for events and integrates seamlessly with the rest of your event planning. This makes it easy to use and facilitates automation.

One of the major benefits of using event registration software is that it lets people fill out their own information thereby reducing data entry errors. Plus, by using software instead of paper, you can save money and reduce waste.

Event registration software helps you create registration forms, sell tickets, and accept payments online so you can deliver a seamless and delightful registration experience to event attendees.

4 Crucial Steps To Setting Up Online Registration For An Event

Here’s how you can set up registration for an event using event registration software:

Step #1: Come up with a registration flow

Before you start using event registration software, take a step back to come up with a registration flow. Think of it as building a roadmap that illustrates how attendees will register for the event.

Here are some questions to ask yourself:

  • What type of event are you organizing? Is it an in-person event or a virtual event?
  • What information do you need to collect from registrants?
  • Will you create free tickets, paid tickets, or both?
  • How will people find the event registration page?

These questions can help you build a streamlined registration flow for online event registration.

 

For example, here’s how the Consumer Technology Association does it for their CES 2021 event:

CES 2021 is an all-digital (or virtual) event that people can find via social networks, email marketing, and social media. Once they land on the CES 2021 website and login into their account, they can register for the event.

Step #2: Create tickets and registration forms

As an event organizer, you ideally want to create and sell paid tickets for your events. Since attendees will pay for their tickets upfront, they’ll be more likely to show up on the day of the event and participate.

Create different types of tickets to give people options to choose their own event experience. For example, you can create a General Admission ticket and a VIP ticket.

Tip: See this post about How to Set the Right Ticket Price and Maximize Revenue for Your Event

Setting up an online event registration form makes it easy for attendees to register for the event. It also minimizes any chance of error in terms of entering contact information or billing details. The best part is that online event registration speeds up the registration process for attendees and for you.

Event Espresso helps event organizers create tickets and set up online registration forms.

Event organizers can create custom questions to add to the registration form. The tool lets you assign questions to question groups which can be reused for different events. It also lets you create and sell paid tickets for free. Plus, you can create multiple ticket types for multiple dates for the same event.

The plugin comes with six different payment gateways out of the box including PayPal Express and Authorize.net AIM. 17 additional payment gateways are offered as paid add-ons.

The key benefit of using a WordPress event registration plugin instead of a hosted solution like Eventbrite is that you won’t be charged for selling paid tickets. If, however, you’d prefer to use a hosted event registration solution then we recommend trying out Event Smart.

Tip: See this related post about how much Eventbrite will really cost you!

Step #3: Set up an event registration page

An event registration page works as a sales page or landing page for the event. In other words, it’s  the page on your website where you will direct people who are interested in learning more about an event and registering.

In addition to a Register Now button that takes people to the registration form, your event registration page should have:

  • Information about speakers
  • Event agenda or topics that will be covered
  • Testimonials and galleries from past events
  • Downloadables
  • Information about the event venue if an in-person event
  • A widget or menu that would allow them to access information about more events

For example, the REUTERS NEXT event shares details about event speakers, the topics they’ll cover, and why someone would want to attend.

Step #4: Register attendees

Once you have an event registration page set up, you can begin promoting it on social media platforms and through email marketing. Here’s an example:

When people land on your event registration form and provide contact information, you can use their email addresses to build your email list. Each time you register an attendee, they should also be added to your email list.

The great thing about using an event registration plugin like Event Espresso is that it offers integration with Mailchimp and Infusionsoft. This means you can automatically build your email list as attendees register for events and manage attendees using Infusionsoft.

Finally, if you sell paid tickets for your event, you can send attendees printable tickets right after they register. This way, they won’t have to collect the ticket in-person or wait for it to be delivered.

Conclusion

By setting up online registration, you make it easy for people to buy tickets and register for your event. For this, you’ll need to come up with a registration flow and create tickets and a registration form using event registration software. Once that’s done, set up an event registration page and promote it so attendees can learn more about the event and register.

 

Next check out Chapter 4 of our Ultimate Guide:
Chapter 4: How To Collect Money For An Event Online

 

And don’t miss the rest of our “Ultimate Guide“:

Chapter 1 | Chapter 2 | Chapter 3 | Chapter 4

 

Ready to set up registration for your event? Try the Event Espresso demo today!

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