Does your business currently run or plan to run events that require bookings or registrations, such as workshops, group courses, non-profit fundraisers, networking conferences, or even a big event such as a dance party, a sporting or religious event, or any kind of event where people need to register to attend or participate?
Managing event registrations is a complex process. You will most likely need to co-ordinate calendar schedules, date availability, attendee numbers, data administration, collecting payments and invoicing, confirmations, reminders, refunds and cancellations … perhaps even accommodating special requests and issuing tickets to participants.
There are a number of advantages to setting up an automated online event registration system. It can make your business more efficient, save time and lower costs, help you easily replicate previously-run events, give you more control, create a better customer experience and grow your sales.
The problem is that this can be quite expensive.
Fortunately, if you run a WordPress-powered site, you can set up a very inexpensive and highly professional web-based event booking solution.
Event Espresso – WordPress Event Registration & Ticketing Management Plugin
The Event Espresso online event registration plugin for WordPress enables you to easily schedule multiple events and start processing bookings literally in minutes.
(Set up multiple events and accept online event registrations with Event Espresso)
Event Espresso is a feature-packed application that gives you full control over your event registration management process.
Create custom registration forms
You can employ several event registration strategies, from simple online bookings and straight up ticket-selling, to creating custom registration forms for collecting detailed information about your event participants, or integrating your event registration forms with an autoresponder system for ongoing updates.
Access detailed information about your event attendees
Important: At the time of writing this review, Event Espresso supports two different versions of their software: EE 3 and Event Espresso 4. The new EE 4 is completely different than the older Event Espresso 3, as the software is being revamped using a different structure to allow for future growth. The Event Espresso 4 plugin software has different features, user interface, data structure, coding method and price. The company plans to eventually transition completely to EE 4, so keep this in mind as you learn more about the benefits and features of this plugin.
For more details, visit the plugin site here:
Here are just some of the many benefits and advantages of using Event Espresso to manage event registrations on your website:
Hands-Free Event Registration Management And Ticketing System
Event Espresso provides you with everything you need to turn your existing website or blog into a fully-featured event management site … from custom registration forms and automated response emails, to attendee limits, multiple price options and discount codes, to printable tickets and even seating charts.
Better Business Productivity
By using an online event registration system like Event Espresso, you save time and improve your business productivity by practically doing away with the chore of processing registrations and signups manually.
Essentially, you are making it easier for participants to perform the registration themselves.
Allowing your attendees to do all of the data themselves frees you up from doing administration and lets you concentrate more of your time on planning a more unique event.
More Control Over The User Experience
As you will learn shortly, Event Espresso gives you more control over the event management and registration process that you want your clients to experience.
Some additional benefits and advantages include:
- Significantly Lower Costs: The Event Espresso plugin gives you a very low cost online event registration management solution compared to other options or using a 3rd-party service provider. The cost is kept low through a model where Event Espresso users pay for the core plugin (which suits the requirements of most users) and then buy add ons when you need added features.
- Increased Sales: With Event Espresso you can accept new event sign-ups outside normal business hours. Not only that, but, Event Espresso social and marketing features (see below) let people interested in attending your event share your information with others who may be interested.
- Green Event Booking Process: With Event Espresso, the event registration process can remain entirely in digital form, eliminating typical paper consumption from tasks related to admin and record-storage.
- Own Your Data. You own all the information collected from your event attendees.
The Event Espresso plugin provides functionality to users through standard features (these come with the plugin) and optional features that users can purchase, called add-ons.
Event Espresso offers a number of features to website owners. Here are just some of these:
- Quick and simple to install and configure. Be up and running in no time.
- Multiple Times and Dates Per Event. In Event Espresso 4, events can have many dates and times (datetimes), which these can be managed from one single event.
- Custom Confirmation Emails. Easily configure customized automated booking and payment notification email messages to communicate with your participants.
- Tax Admin And Reporting Options. Event Espresso 4 provides a number of ways to administer taxes for your event and provide reports of tax fees to customers who purchase tickets. Event managers can administer taxes globally and on a per-ticket basis.
- Intelligent Single Page Checkout Process. The Event Espresso 4 checkout process is fast and intuitive. Registrants are given the option to automatically duplicate the primary attendee’s registration details for any added attendees.
- Default Prices. Create events quickly by pre-configuring system-default ticket pricing.
- Discount Codes. Leverage promotion and discount codes to incentivize visitors to make a buying decision now, or make your offerings more affordable for price-sensitive customers. Also useful if you want to sell-out events close to deadlines.
- Event Check-In List. Generate a list of participants and confirm those who have attended.
- Event Manager Pre-approval. Control who can participate in your events.
- RSS Feeds. Keep your users updated about your events, bring in more visitors and expand your content reach with the built-in XML RSS events feed.
- Keyword-Rich Page URLs. Keyword rich URLs take advantage of your WordPress site’s Permalinks configuration settings. “Pretty” permalinks that use topic-relevant keywords add to the context of your pages and is favored by search engines, helping you bring a more targeted audience to your events.
- Your Organization Settings. Configure your organization’s profile to be deployed throughout the software and your front-end templates. Your organization fields include: organization name, street address, city, state, country, zip code, email, telephone, VAT/tax number, business logo, Facebook URL, Twitter URL, LinkedIn URL, Pinterest URL, Google+ URL, Instagram profile URL.
- Default Tickets. If you create similar tickets for your events, you can automatically set one of those tickets as your default ticket for your new events simply by checking a box.
- Venue Profiles. The venue manager feature in Event Espresso 4 lets information about a venue to appear throughout the Event Espresso admin and the front-end of your website to inform visitors of the location of your event. The venue profile displays many standard WP settings such as tags, categories, discussion settings, comments, etc., but also displays venue details such as venue seating capacity, venue website, venue phone number, venue location details, maps, etc. You can also list venue profiles throughout specific areas of your WP theme and on a venue listing page on your site where you can set up and publish venue profiles for multiple events or display every event you have listed for a particular venue.
- A Community Of Event Experts. Event Espresso lets you network with an expert community of event managers and plugin users. You can engage with other members of the Event Espresso community using their community chat room, user support forums, job board, and social media pages on Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin and Google+.
- Social Sharing. Event registrants and site visitors can spread the word about your event using social share buttons.
- Accurate Event Participant Manager. You have control of your attendees’ details; who has registered, for what event and what amount they’ve paid. With the attendee manager, you can get a quick overview of registered participants and their payment status, easily add/edit attendee records and payments, export an attendee list to a CSV file for additional uses, send custom payment reminders and receipts and communicate with your registrants individually or all at once.
Extra features include:
- Hooks, Actions And Filters. These allow developers to implement safer and more reliable customizations and extensions to the Event Espresso application that are completely compatible with the WordPress development platform.
- Maintenance Mode. You can pause registrations for normal site visitors whenever website maintenance is needed. You can continue to work on your event pages during maintenance mode.
- Autonomy, Flexibility & Value: Event Espresso states on their website that their mission is to “empower business and organization leaders with the event registration, ticketing and management tools that maximize the success of events.” To achieve their goals, the software has been built using a modular that provides users with great autonomy and flexibility and delivers value for money as a result.
The premium edition of Event Espresso also comes with 40+ additional features, including:
- Live-filtering when searching for events inside the Event Espresso admin.
- Default surcharge (similar to adding a service tax to tickets).
- Option to skip the confirmation page in registration.
Event Espresso Add-Ons
As mentioned earlier, Event Espresso provides “add-ons”, which allow you to significantly enhance the functionality of your event management process.
Some of these add ons include:
- Events Vector Maps Template Add-on: The Vector Maps custom events list template allows you to display upcoming events by location. There are four maps available: USA, UK, Canada and Australia.
- Recurring Events Management Add-on: The Recurring Events management addon lets you put your events on autopilot by scheduling repeated events weeks or months in advance. You can schedule as many classes, meetings, courses and conferences in the future as you like. Event Espresso will automatically open and close registrations for all recurring events.
- Events Date Range Template Add on: The Date Range custom event list template allows your users to browse for events that take place in a certain date range.
- Social Coupons Integration Add on: If your web site is featured on Groupon.com you can easily accept Groupon codes to your events. You can even specify whether events accept the social coupons or not.
- Custom Files Add on: The Custom Files addon allows you to override certain aspects of the Event Espresso plugin.
- Seating Chart Add-on: The seating chart add on is for venues and events that sell and reserve seats for attendees in advance. This is ideal for venues and events such as theaters, concert halls, play houses, sports arenas and stadiums. The Seating Chart addon lets you promote reserved or assigned seating to your events and venues directly from your WordPress site. The Seating Chart addon lets you manage the experience for your attendees and design assigned seating charts and attach single pricing to each seat.
- Multiple Event Registration Add-on: The Multiple Event registration add-on gives your potential customers the ability to register for multiple events at once. In each event listing attendees will be given the option to either register for a single event or add multiple events to their cart. With the Multiple Event Registration add on, attendees can register for several events at once and even add additional attendees to any of the same events in the same checkout process.
- Events Table Template Addon: The Events Table Template add-on gives event managers an easy-to-use system that lets you change the look and feel of your event lists. It comes with a simple table template with category filters, table search, table paging and more. It also allows developers to design their own custom templates using one of the templates included as a base template.
- MailChimp Integration Add-on: The MailChimp add on lets you auto-register participants to a specified mailing list or group within your MailChimp account.
Note: Event Espresso regularly adds new features and improvements to the software, including new addons.
For more information about the newest Event Espreso features and add ons, visit the plugin website here:
Plugin Users – Feedback
Below are some of the many great testimonials that customers have written about Event Espresso:
”Event Espresso rocks! I use it for my dance class registrations. Unlike most dance studios where people have to call or send an email in advance, Event Espresso puts a registration form right there in front of the user and allows me to collect valuable information from the user during the registration process with custom questions such as “Do you have previous dance experience?” or “How did you hear about us?”. It also gives my site a professional look and feel.” Ral, Ral’eau Salsa Dance Company
”I have to say that it has been the right choice for me…I’ve been extremely pleased with the way my site is working.” Robin, RobinTime
”I played around with the free version for a couple hours then purchased the Pro for a client. Love it and so do they! Sweetest Event plugin I have tried.” Bill Chambers, Bill Chambers Design
Event Espresso Tips
Whether you are an education services provider, presenter, event planner, or event management consultant, there are simply endless possibilities of what you can do with the Event Espresso software.
After purchasing the plugin and becoming a licensed user, search the support forum for inspiration and practical ways to streamline your event management process and improve the experience of your participants.
Event Espresso works with with all WP plugins and themes that follow WordPress coding standards. If you experience issues with the plugin, however, you will find that Event Espresso provides great end-user support, as so many of its satisfied plugin end-users attest:
”Your plugin saved our client nearly $9000 in development costs because it handled the majority of the functionality we were looking for at a much lower cost. EventEspresso’s staff have been very responsive to our needs when we have them (which has been rare, because the plugin is so well coded). Great job on a great plugin!” Brandon P., Experience Farm
The Event Espresso software provides amazing support including access to support forums, in-depth online documentation with faqs, knowledgebase and how tos, one-on-one support and even a monthly VIP member pass that gives you access to community of developers, designers, event managers, publishers and webmasters that use Event Espresso tools, plus faster support response times.
In addition, Event Espresso boasts an established team of experienced web developers with a solid track record of support, so this is definitely a plugin you can rely on to manage your events.
Event Espresso Cost
Event Espresso is available in various editions, including a FREE basic edition (named Event Espresso Decaf). For support and advanced software functionality, however, you need to consider downloading one of the ”Pro” plugin versions below:
- Personal Edition – This allows you to set up Event Espresso on 1 site only. Includes 51+ Premium features, (addons sold separately) and one year of upgrades and support. Price = $69.95.
- Everything License – This option allows you to configure Event Espresso on 1 domain only. Pricing includes 51+ Premium features, 29 Premium add ons and one year of upgrades and support. Price = $279.95.
- Developer License – This enables you to configure Event Espresso on five domains. Includes 51+ Premium features, (add-ons sold separately) and one year of upgrades and support. Cost = $249.95.
Price details for the Event Espresso plugin can vary, depending on whether there are any promotions or limited-time special offers. Presently, the software retails for the prices shown above. Check the plugin’s website for current pricing details: Event Espresso – Event Espresso
Please Note: The pricing above was current when this review was written. This may not be the actual price charged by the plugin seller when you visit the site.
Event Espresso regularly adds new features and improvements to the plugin. Make sure to register for their newsletter when you visit their site to receive the latest information and updates.
Look up the plugin’s documentation pages for answers to common questions about setup and using Event Espresso, and the support forums for questions related to a specific use-case, or to notify developers about errors and leave feedback.
For all documentation, demos, downloads, videos, tutorials, FAQ and more, visit the Event Espresso website.
Event Espresso is the preferred WordPress event registration and ticketing management software, used by thousands of companies.
If you own a WordPress-powered website and you plan to run events that involve managing dates and venues, registering participants, and reserving tickets, then you will probably not find a better WP plugin for your needs than Event Espresso.
For complete details, visit the plugin website here: Event Espresso – Event Registration & Ticketing Management