Creating a seamless event registration experience will largely depend on the event check-in app you use.
We’ve heard it before, first impressions matter. But what does that mean for event planners? According to Forbes, you only have seven seconds to make a first impression. That’s it. This means that in less than 10 seconds, your attendees have formed an opinion of your event. Where are attendees most likely to spend their first seven seconds at an event? The answer for most will be waiting in line to print their badge. They haven’t had a chance to experience the content, connections, and experiences you have designed for them, yet they are already forming an opinion of your event.
How you check-in your attendees matters. Imagine you arrive at an event with no clear check-in signage, disengaged staff hidden behind a desk, and a long lineup that doesn’t appear to be moving. It doesn’t matter how great your actual event is, if the check-in process is clunky and chaotic it will negatively impact your attendees’ overall experience. Creating a seamless guest arrival experience is paramount and it starts with picking the correct event check-in app.
In this blog post, we discuss how you can deliver a seamless arrival experience for your guests by stepping into their shoes, designing your check-in process to minimize queues, and picking that all-important check-in software.
Cast yourself in the role of your guest
When designing your event, it is essential to step out of the organizer role and put yourself in your attendees’ shoes. Imagine where they might travel from, how they will arrive at your event, and what that first interaction with your event will be. This mental exercise is foundational to creating a great guest experience. It allows you to identify things that may feel obvious, but can easily be overlooked in the event design process.
For example, an attendee during winter is likely to arrive with many more layers than they would in warmer summer months. Consider how they would feel approaching a registration desk, where they receive a pass, swag bag, and welcome drink to juggle along with their other belongings. An event planner in this situation may decide to create comfort for guests by having a coat check facility ahead of the registration desk. Alternatively, they may decide to set up a conference program and swag bag collection point after the badge pick-up and coat check. These minor tweaks and considerations can significantly affect how your attendees feel entering your event.
How you greet attendees at registration is also essential and often overlooked. Consider standing to greet attendees instead of sitting behind the registration desk, creating a feeling of being welcomed into someone’s home. It also allows attendees to maintain a reasonable distance whilst hygiene is still a top priority.
Avoid long lineups
Over 20% of visitors cited queuing times as their primary frustration when attending events (UFI, 2019). We can’t eradicate queues, but with careful planning, you can reduce the pain of queuing for attendees. One way to do this is by offering a variety of ticket types.
“Recently, I was organizing an event with over 1,000 guests, and I wanted to build in contingencies to get around having long queues at the check-in desks. To do this, I staggered guest arrivals based on ticket types. First, we welcomed the VVIPs, who were incentivized to come early with a free breakfast program including keynote speaker to kick off the day. Next, we welcomed the VIPs with access to an exclusive lounge to leverage some pre-event networking opportunities. After the VIPs, general ticket holders were also invited into the event. Later on, we had a specific entry time for after lunch ticket holders attending afternoon only workshops and keynote sessions. By doing this, we were able to get around having long queues whilst still adding value to our guests.”
– Lori D’Agostino, Senior Events Manager at EventMobi.
If alternative ticket types don’t work for your event, you can also ease the burden on registration by having a welcome party the evening before your main event. Invite guests to start networking at your pre-event welcome party, and use this as an opportunity to check them in early.
If long queues are inevitable for your event, consider how you can keep guests entertained while they wait. For example, Comic-Con cannot avoid having long lines; however, they still make this time an experience for their guests. Cosplay characters interact with guests waiting in line to keep them entertained creating unique social media moments ahead of the event. Take the entertainment out of the event hall or conference room and into the arrival area. Delight your guests by having a live string quartet play whilst your team (or sponsors) provide a welcome drink as they wait. Think about what makes sense for your event and what your attendees would appreciate.
Pick the right event check-in app
The technology you use has a significant impact on the pace of your event check-in process. Spreadsheets and printed lists are time-consuming and can lead to long lines as registration staff does their best to locate names. One of the keys to avoiding long lineups is picking the correct event check-in app. Event check-in apps are the perfect partner for any planner who wants a seamless, intuitive, and effortless check-in experience.
Using an event check-in app, like the one offered by EventMobi, allows you to streamline your registration process by:
- limiting the number of vendors you need to work with
- eliminating the need for spreadsheets
- removing obstructive laptops and scanning boxes on the registration desk
- making it easier to capture attendee and event data.
Eventmobi provides a simple, all-in-one, fully customizable Event Check-in App to handle all your registration requirements. The App optimizes the guest check-in experience by design so you can make the best first impression on your attendees. They can easily download the mobile Event Check-In App and load their QR code, ready to be scanned by registration staff. The same code can also scan attendees in and out of sessions to ensure accurate CE credit tracking.
An attendee’s first impression of your event will likely be formed during their check-in experience. Your ability to deliver a seamless experience depends on the technology supporting your event. Look for an event check-in app that allows you to streamline your registration process, and reduce long lines, to help ensure your attendees have the right experience the moment they walk through your venue doors.