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How to Execute Virtual Event Registration

Your online event might have a stellar lineup of speakers and incredibly informative education sessions, but is it enough to ensure high attendance figures? If your virtual event registration process is poorly executed, it may mean you end up with far fewer attendees than you expected. To maximize attendance, your event website should be effective at capturing and converting traffic. In addition, the registration process should be straightforward and quickly completed.

Start With the Event Website

In order to get people to register for a virtual event, you first have to pique their interest in attending. That’s typically achieved via a marketing campaign that details the features of the event and how the target audience will benefit from attending. There are a wide range of ways to get that information out. Ultimately, most marketing campaigns revolve around driving traffic to an event website. From the website, traffic is then directed to online registration.

The event website has three major tasks to perform:

  1. Capture traffic. There are lots of options for driving website traffic. These include:
    1. Email marketing
    1. Content marketing
    1. Social media campaigns
    1. SEO
    1. Paid search advertising (if you have good demographic data on your target audience)  
  2. Provide information. Including the date and time of the event and its online location. Key details about event content and how the audience can benefit from attending are important too.
  3. Convert visitors to attendees. If the website has done its job well up until this point, there should be plenty of site visitors clicking through to register. The final task is to ensure those people complete registration.

Make Event Registration Easy, Fast, and Foolproof

Event registration should be as smooth and trouble-free a process as possible. This is particularly important for virtual event registration because there are no alternative ways to register. At many live events, attendees have the option to register at the event, meaning they can avoid online registration if they choose. Virtual eventgoers don’t have that option, so the online registration process should work perfectly, every time.

Once website visitors make it to the virtual event registration page, the goal is to ensure they complete registration. There are things you can do to help nudge people in the right direction, as well as some registration mistakes to avoid.

Keep the Registration Process Short

Nobody wants to have to click through multiple screens to register. It shouldn’t take anyone longer than a few minutes to finish registering for an event. To keep it short, ask for a minimal amount of information. Stick to essentials such as:

  • Name
  • Email
  • Phone
  • Payment information

If you want to ask for more information as part of a survey or to get demographic information, make it optional. Don’t ask people to part with that information as a condition of registering. Instead, add survey questions on the post-registration page, so people can choose whether to participate.

Make Sure It’s Mobile-Optimized

In this context, optimization refers to how well the registration process works on mobile devices like phones and tablets. If the registration page is poorly optimized, mobile users may find that certain elements don’t work properly, making it difficult to complete registration. Some people may simply switch to a computer to finish registration, but others could be frustrated enough to decide the event isn’t worth the trouble.

To combat this problem, keep the registration page simple and free from any unnecessary filler. The fewer elements there are on the page, the less likely it is that something will cause a problem. Try to test the registration process on multiple different devices, including phones and tablets. The page should work on as wide a variety of devices and browsers as possible.

Leverage Social Proof

Social proof is the idea that when people see their peers take a certain action, they’re more likely to do it too. It’s why reviews and testimonials are such powerful sales tools, and it can work for event registration too.

For instance, some event registration platforms display names of recent registrants to visitors on the event website. Alternatively, you might include social media share widgets on the post-registration page so new registrants can easily post or tweet their attendance. Showcasing people who are attending the event as speakers, panelists, or presenters can work as another form of social proof.

Offer Registration Incentives

To boost your attendance numbers even further, why not offer registration incentives? This can increase your numbers and provide extra publicity if you advertise those incentives on social media. There are several strategies you can choose from depending on your event budget and setup:

  • Early-bird pricing is a common option that can quickly increase your registration numbers. It’s an effective way to boost momentum and interest at the start of the registration period.
  • If you don’t want to offer a discount, another option is to offer one or more perks for early registration. For instance, a virtual meet-and-greet with a speaker or special swag items.
  • Once the early-bird period expires, an attendee-only prize drawing, with winners announced at the event, can work as a registration incentive.

Make Online Event Registration Easy to Maximize Your Attendance Figures

Organizing a virtual event involves a wide range of tasks, but event registration is the foundation on which the success of the event rests. Make sure your virtual event registration process is fast and trouble-free, and avoid making those mistakes that might turn people away.

Take your virtual event to the next level and Go Beyond

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