One of my biggest suggestions for special events: have your own website – not for the organization, but for the event itself.
One of the biggest downfalls to this suggestion: coming up with a website with registration form in an easy and affordable manner. Today I found a great answer and can’t wait to share it with you:
In their own words, “Jotform is the first web based WYSIWYG form builder. Its intuitive drag and drop user interface makes form building a breeze. Using JotForm, you can create forms, integrate them to your site and receive responses by email.” (FAQs)
I created an event registration form with this site in about 30 minutes (partially show here). Then I was able put it on an existing website in a snap – they provide the embed codes for regular websites, WordPress, Blogger, Facebook, and other social sites, plus a free-standing form link and a way to send the link out va email. The form can be embedded on multiple platforms and have all the submissions in one place.
Best of all for non-profits, if you’re getting less than 100 registration submissions per month and very few or no monetary transactions, you can use this system for FREE! If you need more submissions or need to collect fees, you can get it for only $9.95/month. (Pricing)
This form builder is a WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editor – meaning you need very little or no HTML knowledge. You simply grab the type of field you want, fill in the details like what the label/question should be, what the answers can be, how long the answer can be, etc. With just a few clicks and a couple taps on the keyboard, you get a nice looking form! With a little more work, you can make the form merge virtually seamlessly with you website or WordPress site. (Short Video Tutorial)
So, my suggestion on how to get an inexpensive and easy website for your event?
- Create a WordPress site. Cost: FREE
- Create pages on your WordPress.com for your sponsors, entertainment, event details and everything else you need to cover about your event.
- Use the blog posting features to give updates on your event on an ongoing basis.
- You can opt for premium or custom themes and other features, but you don’t necessarily need them for short-term sites.
- Definitely opt for the unique domain address (unless you want to direct users to name.wordpress.com). COST: $12 – $17
- Create a registration form using jotform.com COST: FREE or $9.95/month (or $49.95 for professional)
- I would suggest trying the FREE version first and then moving up to the paid version only if you get close to 100 submissions in a month. According to their website, you can go back and forth as needed on a month to month basis, so you can just do paid for the heavy submission months.
- Post the registration form to a page within your WordPress site.
- That’s it! You’re now ready to publicize your event and start taking registrations!
Have fun and good luck! 🙂