Stop for a second and try to image the flow that someone who registers for your event will follow. What actions will they perform before they end up actually deciding to purchase a ticket or an event registration?
Most likely, the answer is someone will visit your event website, they’ll read a few things on your website home page, and will then click on a button or tab that leads them to an event registration page. In most cases, this registration page is what’s known to digital marketers as a “landing page.”
A landing page is defined by Unbounce (a company that specializes in building landing pages) as “a standalone web page distinct from your main website that has been designed for a single focused objective.” In the case of event planners, the event registration page should be a landing page, a web page designed specifically to get visitors of that page to register for your event.
This article will teach event marketers and planners how to build an event registration page that is an effective landing page, capable of converting visitors to event registrants efficiently.
Why Landing Pages Need To Be Efficient
The amount of time, energy and for some, money, spent on generating event awareness can be immense, doesn’t it make sense to build an event registration page that efficiently generates actual event registrants?
What some event organizers fail to understand is that rather than bringing in thousands of new visitors to an event website, increasing the conversion rate can have a tremendous impact on the overall number of people who sign up for an event.
Conversion Rate % = (# Event Registrants ÷ # Visitors To Your Event Website) x 100
Let’s assume that 1,000 people visit my event website each week, and that 3% (or 30 people) of them end up registering for the event.
Let’s assume that my goal is to register 50 people per week.
I can either try to generate over 650 additional visits to my event website each week (a 35% increase in visits). Or, I could simply increase the conversion rate from 3% to 5%.
Depending on the event you are planning, it might be considerably easier to increase the event registration conversion rate a few percentage points, rather than having to increase traffic to your event website. That’s why it’s important that event organizers make sure they build efficient event registration pages, otherwise, they will be throwing event registrations and registration revenue out the window.
Principles Of Landing Page Copywriting
Though it may seem like we live in an era where the written word is less valuable than what can be communicated in an Instagram post or a Snapchat Geofilter, copywriting still matters. It is especially important when talking to serious buyers, in this case, the serious buyer is a potential event attendee who is trying to figure out if he or she should invest time, money and reputation in attending your event.
Whether you like it or not, writing well still matters. If you can master the principles or relevance, clarity and action, you’ll be able to effectively compel landing page visitors to register for your event.
It’s important that when writing landing page copy you have an intimate understanding of who you are writing to. If you understand who your target event registrant is, it will be much easier for you to write copy that is relevant.
Make sure to articulate why and how your event can benefit your target audience. Something we do frequently at Bizzabo is begin copy empathizing with the reader about a specific problem. Then we stress the importance of solving that problem, and finally we wrap up with our solution.
We also address readers in the second person. Using “you” makes readers feel as though they are being addressed directly, which can be a good tactic to create more engaging copy.
To test for relevance, ask an event evangelist of yours to read over the copy to see if the writing encapsulates what they find valuable about the event.
Landing page visitors need to be told what to do next, otherwise they might not end up registering for your event, even if the copy you’ve written is relevant to them. You can write in an action oriented way by including clear CTAs (calls to action), also known as buttons, on your registration landing page with phrases like “Click Here To Register Now” so that readers understand that they should take a specific step in order to receive the benefits you’ve articulated in the copy.
To test for action oriented copy, ask someone unaffiliated with your event or look at your registration landing page for no more than 10 seconds. Then ask them to articulate what they were supposed to do next. If it wasn’t clear to the visitors that they should sign up for your event, you know you copy isn’t action oriented enough.
If your writing can’t be understood, it doesn’t matter how relevant or action oriented it is. A classic copywriting trick is to write sentences so that a middle school student could easily comprehend them. That way, readers who are only half focusing will still be able to understand the key ideas you are trying to convey.
To test for clarity, ask someone who has no knowledge of your event to read over the copy and to summarize the key points that they take away. Then check to see if their summary matches what you intended to communicate.
Principles Of Landing Page Design
We’ve written about event website design and color psychology before. To summarize the learnings from those resources, it’s important that you create an event registration page that intuitively leads visitors to the action you want them to take.
You can use principles of color contrast to draw visitors attention to an event registration form for example. You can place the form near the top of the page so that it is easily visible to visitors, and you can make use of brightly colors and well-placed CTAs so that visitors are more likely to actually register for your event.
When it comes to conversion-centric design, it’s often the case that the best landing page design will surprise you. You may find yourself in a scenario where one colleague prefers one landing page design, and another prefers a different design. The best way to solve these landing page design disagreements is to test both versions using a multi-variate testing tool.
Optimizely, Yieldify and Dynamic Yield all provide advanced multivariate testing tools for those who want to get serious about testing various designs.
For those who are just starting, simply measuring the results of one design, then changing it and measuring results over the same period of time can give you an equally powerful sense for how event attendees are interacting with your event registration page.
For readers who want to get serious about building better landing pages there are a few great outlets to check out and a few interesting tools to consider trying.
Conversion XL: This is a website dedicated to best practices on how to increase the conversion rates of various landing pages across many different industries. They maintain a helpful blog and have great in-depth resources.
Unbounce Blog: Run by a company that specializes in landing pages, the Unbounce Blog has a lot of great resources on how to create great landing page copy, build good-looking and effective landing pages, and how to test pages to make sure they are performing as best as possible.
Optimizely Blog: We mentioned Optimizely as a solution for those who want to get serious about testing landing pages. They also have a helpful blog for those who want to dive deep into multivariate (also know as A/B) testing.
UsabilityHub: Settle design disputes fast with UsabilityHub. For a small fee, you can pay to have a random sampling of strangers try a design or web page so that you can learn which version is best.
Make Edits To Live Web Pages: This resource is more of a tip and less of a tool. For those interested in make small tweaks to an existing event web page so that team members can see what the page might look like if it were redesigned, all you need to do is edit a few lines of easily available code, and you can make changes on any web page as you wish.
Bizzabo: Not only is Bizzabo a helpful resource for event planners, it’s also an all-in-one event success platform that makes it simple to build a beautiful and effective event website, complete with event registration landing pages. Learn more about our platform and take it for a test-drive by clicking the link.
One of the best, but often overlooked ways to increasing event registrations is to build better event registration landing pages. Rather than needed to drive hundreds or thousands of new visitors, you can simply convert a higher percentage of existing visitors. To do so, you’ll want to focus on writing compelling copy that is relevant, action oriented and clear. Then you’ll want to design a web page that looks good, while also being easy to navigate.
To find the ideal combination of copy and design, you may also want to spend some time testing different versions to increase conversion rates even further.
For more help on designing a stunning event experience, you can download our free event design ebook by clicking the button below!