An event website should perfectly reflect the event itself. It has to be as suggestive as possible, and create an agreeable atmosphere around the event. Its purpose is to function as an invitation for each and every visitor of the website, and be an incentive for them to buy tickets or register for the respective event.
An event website might be a simple one-page website. It’s practically a landing page oriented towards conversion. There’s no need to create multiple pages, a succession of content sections in a page will do. Different content sections present different aspects of the respective event. Each item in the menu sends readers to the corresponding content section in the page; thus, information is concise and restricted to only what’s needed for a good and persuading presentation of the event.
List of needed elements for the homepage
When and Where
The date when the event will take place, and the location where it will happen: these are essential for an event website. And they shouldn’t miss from an event website. They should be located above the fold, as central information that has to be communicated to readers (they might be included in title and tagline, and Hero).
These 2 items should be placed front and center onto the website homepage. They cannot miss from the homepage, as they’re the very reason why the website has been created.
Users need to have an easy-to-access subscription option. It’s best to include this subscription option in menu. Thus, you invite readers to subscribe, and the other items in the menu are placed on the same line. These other items, which need further attention and research, are easy to access and study closely. After having consulted them, users can simply come back to the subscription button and buy tickets or register for the event.
Ticket price is key information, that you need to communicate to users in the first part of the page. It’s essential for conversion, as it’s part of the decision-making process with a view to buy.
Best practices indicate that the subscription button should be easily distinguishable from the rest of the menu, through a prominent color or some different design.
In the example above, notice the “Passes” item in the menu, which drives readers directly to buying tickets for the event.
Prominently display the reason to attend
What’s the reason of the event? Why should people attend? How can this event enrich people, so they’d better participate than not?
Unless the event is already very popular, you should think of answering the above questions, early in users’ browsing sessions. That’s why it’s recommended that such a paragraph be part of the first sections in the homepage.
The reason to attend is, for an event website, what a unique selling proposition is for a business/ecommerce website. It should be formulated in the same line with the brand personality, and reflect one of the following: friendliness, coolness, professionalism, youth, excellence, etc.
Here’s an example of unique value proposition that’s attached to an event:
“Four days that will change the way you think about business” – a concise phrase that speaks volumes. The image associated with it is meant to make you think outside the box, and so it does.
To be worthy of people’s consideration, an event has to really make a difference for them. So please make sure you state that clearly right in the homepage. It might move the needle in terms of conversions.
Develop descriptions and capitalize on when, where + reason to attend
You might want to consider including some descriptions that develop upon key information we already talked about. Only, this time you have the occasion to elaborate on the details, and integrate key information within a context.
With descriptions, you begin storytelling…
A suggestion would be to use personas in your descriptions, and induce FOMO (fear of missing out). People will resonate with those personas, and fear being left excluded from the event. As a result, it’s likelier they participate in the event/conference and be part of a community.
Example of short description of an event:
“A week of talking shop…” invites users to read more. In fact, it’s an invitation to read about the story of the event. That description gives you the picture of how it will be, why to attend and why you shouldn’t miss it.
After text (or together with it), and in line with a succession of arguments in favour of the event, visuals should be deployed. Imagery is useful for a synthetic, global picture of the event.
An image is worth a thousand words… and you should use its power for presenting your event on the website.
Generally, you should favour videos if possible, as they multiply the force of an image, they imply interactivity and they generate engagement. Aside from videos, relevant images can also have a strong impact upon readers (image galleries, speakers’ photos, etc.).
Visuals wrap up the presentation into something that’s a fair promise for the event: they stand as a guarantee that it’ll be great, the way people expect after viewing the online images and videos.
Below is an example related to concerts:
Visuals can be represented by images, videos, photo galleries and image carousels, image collages and any innovative way of showing pictures in a page.
In fact, visuals should have more weight than text in the design of an event website. You should dedicate more space to visuals, as visuals are the real force of expression in an event website. They’re inviting to take part in the event, they speak for themselves and they’re persuading enough for users to convert.
Other pages = they present further characteristics of the event
If a page cannot comprise the whole information about an event, you can make use of additional pages where you include:
*All of the above will have concrete information, avoiding the blurb. Remember to use as many visuals as possible, and create concise messages that easily communicate about the event.
Contact info and BUY TICKETS button on every page
This is key information that has to be repeated on every page. It connects with users and gives them a direct means to buy tickets for the event.
As we’ve already mentioned, the buy/reservation button can be successfully placed in the menu, for quick and direct access. The contact info can be placed in a dedicated page, and be reiterated in the footer of every page in the website. In this way, it allows people to ask questions and clarify everything about the event, so they get their tickets and book their place.
Some more examples of successful event websites:
What are the main components of an event website?
- Event name and logo
These elements are essential for any event. They help people recognize the event and memorize it for possible participation to it.
- Contact within reach
Contact details cannot miss. If you want people to take part in the event, you should, you must provide them all contact details. Users will get answers to their questions, and advance in the decision-making process, when it comes to buy their tickets.
- Links towards a social profile that hosts the community created around the event
This kind of connection with other people interested in the event will help the audience grow. Users can find information that’s important to them from other members involved in the community.
- Dates when/where the event is taking place
This information has to include location, date and time of the event, probably a map and direction about how to get to that location.
- Conditions for participants
If there are some conditions that future participants have to meet, specify it on the website. State it clearly, to avoid all possible confusion and give leads complete information before they hit the BUY button.
- CTA button for booking (ticket purchasing or reservation system)
This item is directly responsible for turning leads into participants and getting conversions. So, it might be useful to run an A/B test or multivariate test to see how different CTA buttons affect conversions.
- Press releases
This is valid for businesses that have press coverage. You can thus include press releases into the website and show proof of the event popularity.
- Page about the speakers/organizers
You can add short presentations of the organizers/speakers, their bios, their photos, and some quotes from them.
In this section, you’ll include the schedule (for conferences), the program for each day, topics that’ll be discussed. People will know what to expect from the event, and will come better prepared to take part in that respective event.
- Relevant images/image gallery
As discussed above, visuals should counterweigh text messages, in event websites. Thus, you should consider including relevant images, or even an image gallery with photos from past occurrences of the event, preparations and the event location.
- Short video presentation of the event (quick intro)
This might be helpful to give users an idea of how the event will be like. A video can give a glimpse into the event atmosphere, and initiate engagement from users.
- Presentations of past performance
You might consider including a history of other occurrences of the event, in recent years. This might give users a full picture of what the event is/was all about, and how it has evolved in time.
- Sponsors (if there are any)
The website should include the list of sponsors of the event, if it’s the case. Such a section might include the names and logos of the respective companies.
- Top bar for early bird tickets (if it’s the case)
You can place a top bar on the website, to notify users of discounts and the limited time period when they’re available.
- Travel and accommodation
In some cases, travel and accommodation will have to be part of the event organization. Put this info onto the website, options to travel and get to the event location, plus options for accommodation during the event.
- The homepage header is very important; design it well
The homepage header of an event website might include video, slider, image, anything that will draw people’s attention and invite them to browse for further information.
- Description of the event
Don’t omit to make a description of the event. This should include all relevant information, complete data about what people need to know before taking part in the event.
- Conference wrap-up
After the event takes place (in case it’s a conference), you should post a conference wrap-up, discussing different aspects of the event and drawing conclusions.
That’s it. You’re now a little bit more prepared to design a successful website for the event that needs it. We hope the article will help you take your work to a different level, and give you both efficiency and inspiration in your design.