There are dozens of nuances to consider when planning an event. Too often, event organizers forget about online pre-registration or setting up their desk. An effective event registration table is the very first point of contact to welcome and interact with the recently arrived attendees, which is why these tables require outstanding organization.
What is an event registration desk?
The registration desk or an event registration table is the heart of all conference-related issues. Indeed, the registration desk and especially front-desk people play a crucial role in the running of the event as they are usually consulted in any situation, both organizational or emergency cases, etc. There are a few main reasons why you need an effective registration table and online pre-registration set up for your best event management practice:
- Changes to or cancellation of the event: If you have to suddenly cancel or postpone the event for some reason, you should be able to quickly warn everyone who has registered to come.
- Information about those who are going to come: Every event is held for its participants. It never hurts to know who is going to come in advance, what these people expect or want to see, and so on. This will help you to better plan and direct the event on site.
- Create a sense of belonging: Invite participants to tell you what they would like to hear, to ask questions of the speakers, to suggest topics for individual parts of the event in advance, etc. This is appreciated by the participants because you have let them know that you consider their opinions and care about them.
- Save contacts to follow up after the event: It is useful to collect feedback and impressions so that you can make improvements with the next event.
Clearly, an effective registration table may help you avoid many problems and misunderstandings both at the beginning of the event planning stage and after it.
Top conference registration table ideas
For a top-notch conference registration table setup, use the following registration ideas:
Ask your participants to send their information by email. Once they do this, you can systematically copy this data from their emails, sort it out, and import it to an Excel worksheet.
Via the website
With the help of your own website, you can manage your events and wow your attendees much more effectively. If you don’t have a website, you may order online event management services to do this for you.
Online event registration portals will provide a user-friendly registration form. It is convenient for participants to fill in this form since they can’t make any mistakes and will be able to fill in exactly what you’ve asked for.
In 90% of cases, such registration forms collect all the information usually collected via email so this method will save you time and effort. For more details, you may look at this onsite registration infographic.
How can you use GEVME online registration services?
GoogleDocs allows you to set up even large conference registration forms in just a few minutes without any prior training. There may be different types of questions, registration pages, and settings. All the information from participants should be kept in one convenient file, which is then easy to work with. However, this system is often hard to achieve.
That’s why it’s better to use an online registration service that is a fully integrated event management and event marketing software that greatly simplifies your event planning process.
It ensures a seamless experience of onsite check-ins with true cross-platform software support that ensures each of your guests is able to check themselves in on any device they choose with a few clicks, from both desktop and mobile devices.
Onsite registration/Check-in types
GEVME uses all desk types for event organization and management and offers the following check-in types for customers:
Pre-registration saves time. Each attendee may register via the platform in advance; it usually takes only 17 seconds to complete.
- Onsite registration
This is the check-in option for those who haven’t managed to go through the pre-registration, and it is also known as walk-in registration. It is possible to complete this in the event location, and it is an approximately 60-second process.
With the pre-registration completed, this allows the customers to walk in and scan their QR codes at self-registration islands, which are usually available to approach from all sides and are placed in a large, visible area in the conference room.
All GEVME check-in methods are available in one user-friendly platform that allows for lightning-fast check-in as well as the elimination of bulk printing through automated name badge production. Our process enables the event attendees to quickly collect their smart name badges. With intelligent GSI on-demand printing technology, no one will be kept waiting.
Hardware used at check-in desks
Each customer may choose their desired hardware according to their needs at a registration desk, or they may use the one that will best serve their needs:
- Print servers (laptops with uninterrupted Internet backup)
- Printers (to print badges on the spot)
- Scanners (to scan QR codes or bracelets)
- Terminals (for immediate transaction needs)
There are also company attendants who may help people who are not familiar with any of the aforementioned devices that are available at the event.
Registration zone types
There are also several registration zones available to the customers, depending on their tastes and preferences or availability:
- An island setup with a laptop
- Self-service registration via mobile apps
- Self-check-in for QR code scanning with scanners, laptops, and tablets
- A help desk with all the above-mentioned methods available and an attendant
Usually, such islands are easy to approach from all sides and are positioned in a large, visible area in the conference room (or several areas).
Marketing & design issues
In addition, with a professional event management system, it will be easier to find designs for registration desks and to organise marketing, even for small conferences, while providing the best marketing strategies for you and your partners.
Event organisers should be ready to hand out the promotion packs on time; by packing them earlier, they can ensure that participants won’t have to wait until the end of the conference.
Another way to improve marketing strategies is logistics solutions.
How to prepare an onsite event registration desk
Let’s discover some of the most common ways to set up a registration desk process for the organizers:
One of the most important things to do before the official conference program opening is to make the enlistment work area accessible for one evening, perhaps even the night before the occasion begins. Conference members are normally in a hurry and often worried so they will want to investigate the setting and ask all the relevant questions before the opening of the conference.
Registration table signs
Print these in advance, but keep a template with you. If you have to replace a speaker or some other unforeseen circumstance occurs, you will have to urgently reprint whatever is needed: badges, tags, etc.
Make these signs two-sided. This will demonstrate your respect not only for the audience in the hall but also for the speakers. They will see that you care about them just as much as all the other guests. The speakers, having seen their names, will sit onstage in the right order. If they are not familiar with each other, the signs will also help them meet each other more easily.
Event registration desk etiquette
The registration table should be a clear visual part of any conference. It must be strategically placed—usually by the entrance. It should always be in perfect order. At the table, organizers should never drink coffee, eat, smoke, etc.
There should be no rubbish or scraps of paper that don’t belong. Everything placed on the table should be very neat, smooth, and in perfect order while being corporately branded. Participants of the event, as a rule, leave the occasion with promotional packs topped off with all types of marketing materials, from printed media to treats like pens or business cards or even vouchers for discounts.
If the registration starts in the morning, attendants at the desk cannot meet the guests sitting down. This is possible only after the start of the conference, once all the guests have entered the hall. If a customer approaches the registration desk, the attendants should immediately stand, showing respect and attention.
Company employees should never stand in front of the registration desk so as not to interfere with the customers. Attendants stand only at the table. Organizers will often have guides or volunteers ready to help people find their way inside or around the conference hall, and these individuals are typically placed in the most strategically appropriate parts of the event.
It is also recommended to use special furniture or tablecloths that completely cover the guests’ legs while seated. This applies to both the registration table and the podium.
5 Best Ideas to Welcome Attendees
If you want to succeed at a conference and organize the event professionally, you should also consider the ways you welcome your attendees. Here are a few more ideas to include on your event registration desk checklist:
The name tags of the participants should be printed and placed the day before the conference starts.
If you have a prepaid delegate list done, it is best to make sure that these delegates are directed to a separate desk counter.
Any backup information about the participants or a list of all the main organizers with their contact information—names, mobile phone numbers, and full addresses—should also be available for use at the desk.
Finally, since the computer network and online registration setup are crucial for a conference’s success, any potential issues with Internet access, either inside or outside the conference hall, should be prevented by means of separating the registration desk network from the network used by the participants.
A printed backup list with participants will also come in handy in cases when the network fails, which will save you precious time.
With all of this in mind, the sky’s the limit for your event registration and organization.
It is a great idea to register guests with the help of a special online registration system. Most often, GEVME is successfully used as an effective event registration tool for multiple purposes: conferences, awards ceremonies, summits, and other business events. Additionally, it can provide useful tips on event registration, organization, following up, event venue capacity calculations, and so much more.
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