September 2, 2020December 7, 2020Technology4 Min ReadEvent Registration: Tips for Choosing Online Registration and Ticketing SoftwareMike LaFolletteAs in-person functions convert to virtual events, event registration remains vital for event organizers to attract and register attendees. While virtual events present several new considerations, they also raise plenty of questions you should ask before deciding on event registration software.How will the event registration app work with your other event technology? Can you customize or personalize tickets and experiences for guests? How quickly can you collect funds as people sign up? Will you have visibility into event data and metrics? Don’t worry, you’re not the only one with these questions. Here are some top considerations when purchasing online event registration software.Event Registration Should Integrate with Other Event TechnologyJust as you want event attendees to enjoy their experience, you want to streamline registration so users feel excited to participate when they sign up. An online event registration tool should work seamlessly with your virtual event management platform, and any accompanying mobile apps or technology you plan to utilize.If an event registration system doesn’t share data with your other technologies, you could encounter duplicate data entry that leads to inaccurate reporting, additional costs, and a potentially rocky user experience. That’s not what you want users and sponsors to remember or share when the event ends.Instead, look for software that follows attendees from start to finish through the entire event experience. An end-to-end solution will deliver a personalized experience for attendees, and provides organizers with a way to store event data in a single, uniform database for easier and more accurate analytics.Branding and CustomizationIt’s your event, so the event registration page should reflect your brand or your client’s brand. You should be able to add your colors, logos, custom images, and any other details to deliver an experience tailored to your branding. Bonus points if the software allows you to customize the registration page’s URL.Capture your company’s culture by highlighting it through your registration page. So, if you think posting pictures of last year’s VIP Beer & Bike experience will inspire nostalgia and prompt attendees to check out your virtual event, a customizable event registration page gives you that option.Dynamic Ticketing Just as live events offer a variety of ticketing options – early bird rates, student discounts, and VIP experiences, to name a few – customized online event registration and ticketing add value for your audience and for your company.Event registration options that enable you to customize ticket types, promo codes, and access codes, also allow for personalization of the attendee’s event experience. You can tailor event programming for C-Suite guests, marketing professionals, salespeople, or any other segmented groups with specially focused content, incentives, and event activities. Once registered, dynamic event software can automatically customize an attendee’s ticket with their picture, language preference, work details like title and job description, social handles, or any other distinguishing features you want to highlight on their profile.Best of all, by choosing an online event registration tool that’s part of an end-to-end event management solution, the personalization components automatically carry forward from the registration process to the event management platform.Event Registration Data and AnalyticsFrom the moment you announce a virtual event, it’s important to collect and analyze as much data as possible. Use those analytics to measure the event’s success, as well as evaluate what aspects need improvement before hosting another event.Integrated event registration software makes this work considerably easier by collecting attendee data, storing and analyzing the results in one cloud-based database that’s accessible anywhere, anytime — versus merging data from various sources and trying to determine any erroneous data points that may skew the analytics.If data ranks as a priority, find a registration system that displays real-time metrics for attendance, sales totals, orders submitted, page views, average transaction values, and other details vital to your business. Decide ahead of the virtual event which metrics mean the most to stakeholders and set concrete goals tied to data.Event Registration: Instant Funding and PayoutThe million-dollar question – not literally…well, hopefully someday: How and when will you have access to tickets revenue?Registration systems vary widely when it comes to funding and payout. Some platforms collect and hold revenue until after events conclude, which isn’t ideal if your business or client depends on that money to cover part of their overhead, like AV equipment rental, or you need to immediately pay out speakers or sponsors.Some event registration systems provide instant payout, meaning you can claim ticket funds and profits from event sales as soon as payments get submitted through the registration page.Top TakeawaysThankfully, registration technologies continue to evolve, offering a range of different features and capabilities. Before pinning all of your hopes and high expectations on free event registration, first consider your specific business needs and objectives.Be sure the online event registration you choose works seamlessly with other event technology planned for the event.Just because it’s a virtual event doesn’t mean it can’t be personal – add those festive images from previous conferences you hosted, or anything else you think will grab the attention of new and previous attendees. Make a bold statement by branding your customizable registration form template.CEOs, marketing professionals, sales executives, and others in your audience all attend virtual events with different expectations and goals for what they hope to get out of the virtual conference, trade show or networking event. Use event registration software to personalize each person’s experience throughout the virtual event.Everyone wants to get paid as soon as possible. Make sure your event registration platform instantly pays out.One day in the who-knows-how-long future, it will be safe to all meet in the same room again. Ensure the event registration tool you select provides functionality and key products you’ll continue to utilize for years to come, whether that’s for hosting live events, virtual events, or something in-between.Mike LaFolletteWriter @ Red Pen Content. Master Gardener. Dad to an enormous Alaskan Malamute!