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Event marketing | 13 April 2015

9 Principles For Building A Beautiful Event Website

Siobhan Becker

You know when you see a good event website. It’s attractive, easy to navigate and displays properly across all platforms. Designing a website that is easy to navigate and is beautiful is critical. It sets the tone of your event, and is also the pre-event hub for all of your attendees. It’s the place where you’ll sell tickets, feature sponsors and share critical information with event attendees.

There are many components that go into creating an awesome site. No one is born a web designer, but that doesn’t mean understanding basic elements of website design is out of your reach.

To help you get off to the right start when creating your next event website, here are our top 10 principles for building a beautiful event website that has the ability to convert visitors into attendees: 

9 Event Website Design KEYS:

1. Know your audience

Identifying your audience is the easy part – the people visiting your website are there to find out more about your event. Your job is to put yourself in your attendees’ shoes. What kind of information would you be looking for if you were attending the event? How would you like it presented to you?

2. Keep your branding on visitors minds

You want your attendees to recognize your brand just by looking at your homepage. The key to achieving this is uniformity. Use your company’s colors and fonts. According to a study by the Nielsen Norman Group, people first look at the top left of a screen and read in a horizontal “F” shape movement from there. Use this data to your advantage and display your logo at the top left corner of the page to keep your brand squarely in the minds of visitors.

Event Website Reading Pattern

3. Make your event website design simple

You may be eager to show off your event, but overwhelming site visitors with busy images and dense text may be too much for them to handle. Give your attendees the information they need without overwhelming visitors by putting everything they need to know on one page. Instead, don’t be afraid to create dedicated pages for information about the agenda, speakers, sponsors, and venue information.

4. Offer engaging content

Keep them coming back by offering visitors consistently engaging content! You can start a blog to accompany your website. Not only will writing relevant content improve your event website SEO, but it will also provide a compelling reason for attendees to frequently visit your site.

Your blog is also  a great way to marketing your event to potential event attendees. You can consider offering event speakers guest posting opportunities on your blog, if their articles are compelling, it could encourage readers to sign up for your event.

5. Make it responsive

According to the Pew Research Center, 63% of adults use their cell phones to go online. This data underscores the importance of having a responsive event website that can adapt to screens of every shape and size. Google recently updated its algorithm to penalize websites that aren’t responsive. Bottom line: you need a responsive website.

6. Optimize online media

You worked hard on making your website – don’t let that hard work go to waste! Make sure your photos and videos don’t hinder your website’s performance. Pay attention to the formats you’re saving your photos and videos as. Google Developers has come up with a list of guidelines to follows when choosing an image format.

Additionally, there are a number of services out there that can help you compress media files so that large media files don’t slow down your website.

7. Include prominent Call-To-Action buttons (CTAs)

CTAs help drive sales by providing your viewers with more opportunities to connect with your event. Two examples of effective CTAs are “Sign Up” or “Register Here.” More prominent CTAs should be larger and utilize contrasting colors so they stand out. It’s best to space CTAs throughout the site – at the top, in the center or at the bottom of the page.

CTA on event website

8. Incorporate social media share buttons

You never know when someone will want to share your content, so be sure to always give him or her the opportunity to re-tweet, pin and share posts on social media.

Additionally, you can compose pre-made posts for some platforms like Twitter. The tool, Click To Tweet allows visitors to tweet a pre-written tweet to their followers from within your website.

Event Website Social Share Buttons

9. Make your website blazingly fast

It’s simple: people prefer fast websites over slow websites. Viewers grow impatient with websites that load slowly so it’s no surprise that they often give up and visit another website. Don’t let this happen to you – measure your website’s performance with Google Developer’s PageSpeed Insights. Google’s tool will not only access the speed of your site, it will also make recommendations for how to improve your event website to make it faster and more user-friendly.

Helpful Event Website Tools:

  • Optimizely: Find out which pages on your website are performing the best and learn the secrets behind their success. Optimizely uses A/B testing and multivariate testing to provide users with accurate feedback about what is and isn’t working online. These testing methods tell you how different variables on your website impact the conversion rate of various landing pages on your website.

  • SumoMe: Build traffic for any website with SumoMe’s free tools. Some of SumoMe’s free features include: list builders, heatmaps, share tools, scroll boxes, content analytics and more. SumoMe offers a free subscription option to its users, and is a great tool for those in event marketing looking for an inexpensive way to build an online audience.

  • Lynda: Learn more about the basics elements of design, or take your design skills to the next level with Lynda’s video tutorials. Lynda offers basic and premium classes with monthly or annual payment plans.

  • Simple Share Buttons: Share buttons encourage your attendees to interact with your content. Expanding your social media presence becomes increasingly important as event day approaches. Choose from a pre-set palette of colors, or customize your share buttons with your own colors or images. Simple Share Buttons’ prices vary based on how many websites you use their product on, but prices start at $10.

Good event website design is just one part of building a powerful presence online. Another critical aspect is ensuring that your SEO (Search Engine Optimization) strategy is up to par with Google’s ever changing standards. To get a crash course in how to make sure your site is SEO optimized, download our free white paper by clicking the button below!

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