Do you currently run or plan to run events that require co-ordinating registrations, such as workshops, training classes, charity fundraisers, marketing conferences, or even a big event such as a trade exhibit, a sporting or religious event, or any kind of event where people need to register to attend?
Managing event bookings is a complicated and time-consuming process. You will probably have to manage scheduling, dates, attendee numbers, data collection, collecting payments and sending invoices, confirmations and reservations, reminders and notifications, cancellations … perhaps even accommodating special needs and issuing tickets to participants.
There are many advantages to setting up an automated online event registration system. It can make your business more efficient, save time and lower expenses, help you easily replicate repeat events, give you more control, improve customer experience and increase your sales.
The problem is that this can be quite costly.
The good news is that if you own a WordPress-based site, you can install a very inexpensive and professional web-based event booking solution.
Event Espresso – WordPress Event Manager & Ticketing Registration System
The Event Espresso online event registration software enables you to easily set up your event and begin accepting online bookings in just minutes.
(Set up multiple events and receive online event registrations with Event Espresso)
Event Espresso is a feature-packed application that gives you complete control of the event registration management process.
Customize your event registration forms
You can use various event registration strategies, from simple online enrolments and straight up ticket-selling, to creating custom registration forms for collecting detailed information about your event participants, or integrating your event bookings with an autoresponder system for ongoing follow-ups.
View detailed information about event attendees
Important: At the time of writing this article, Event Espresso is transitioning between two different versions of their plugin: Event Espresso 3 and Event Espresso 4. The new Event Espresso 4 is significantly different than the older Event Espresso 3, as the software has been rebuilt 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 developers aim to eventually phase out Event Espresso 3, so keep this in mind as you read more about this plugin.
For more details go here:
Here are just a few of the benefits of using Event Espresso to manage event registrations on your website:
Automated Event Registration Management
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 emails, to attendee limits, multiple pricing levels and discount codes, to printable tickets and seating charts.
Higher Business Productivity
By using a web-based event registration solution like Event Espresso, you save time and increase your business productivity by virtually eliminating the need to process registrations manually.
Basically, you are making it easier for event attendees to complete the sign-up process themselves.
Letting your enrollees to do the data entry frees you up from doing administration and lets you focus more time on creating a better event.
Full Control Over The User Experience
As you will learn shortly, Event Espresso gives you complete control over the event management process that you want your clients to experience.
Some additional benefits include the following:
- Reduced Costs: The Event Espresso plugin provides you with an inexpensive online event registration management solution compared to other options or using a third-party service provider. This is made possible through a model where users pay for the core plugin (which suits the requirements of most users) and buy optional addons only if you need additional functionality.
- Increased Sales: With Event Espresso you can accept new registrations 24 hours a day. Not only that, but, Event Espresso social sharing features (see below) let people interested in attending your event share your information with their friends who may be interested in attending.
- Green And Paperless Event Registration Process: With Event Espresso, the event registration process is kept wholly in digital form, eliminating typical paper waste from tasks associated with enrollment.
- All Data Belongs To You. You own all the data gathered from your event attendees.
Event Espresso delivers functionality to end-users via built-in features (these come with the software) and additional features that customers can buy for an added cost, called add-ons.
Event Espresso offers a number of great built-in to WordPress users. Here are just some:
- Quick and simple to install and configure. Be up and running in no time.
- Multiple Dates and Times Per Event. In EE 4, events can have multiple dates and times (datetimes), which these can be managed from one single event.
- WordPress Event Calendar. Attendees can easily find your upcoming events and add these to their schedule with the calendar.
- Collect Payments. Event Espresso provides integration with payment gateways, allowing you to collect payments before running your events.
- Smart Single Page Checkout Process. The Event Espresso 4 checkout process is fast and intuitive. Registrants are given the option to automatically copy the primary attendee’s registration information for any additional attendees.
- Default Price Types. Price types let you create new prices that adjust the base ticket pricing for your default ticket.
- Discount And Promotional Codes. Offer promotional and multiple discount codes to encourage people to make a decision without hesitation, or simply make your offers more appealing for price-sensitive prospects. Also useful if you want to sell out events close to deadlines.
- Contact Profiles And Contact List. Event Espresso 4 lets you gain a better understanding of who your clients are and how they have done business with you.
- Administrative Pre-approval. Control who can participate in your events.
- Private Contact Notes. Keep observations about a contact on their profile and how you have interacted with them. Private commenting helps you keep a record of when users contacted you, your internal comments, and how you’ve interacted with your customers.
- Draft Events. Draft events let you build your event over time without displaying it live on your site. You can work on your event until you are ready to take things live, or schedule your event to publish at a later time and date.
- Easy Event Management. Event Espresso puts you in full control of all aspects of your event’s registration and ticketing processes, and also lets you automate the process with event management tools that include staff and venue manager, custom event designs, payment processing and handling, list waiting, limits on attendees, print-ready tickets and more.
- Bulk Edit Event Information. Event Espresso 4 provides a CSV-based importing capability that lets you import a lot of event data all at one time. You can export, edit and import data for events, datetimes, ticketing information, prices, registration questions, venues, terms, taxonomies, term relationships and more.
- Multiple Participant Enrollments. Event Espresso 4 allows an individual or a group to purchase multiple tickets and different types of tickets at the same time. You specify how many people are able to enrol in one session by specifying either a limit on ticket purchases per order, or per-ticket minimums and maximums.
- Registrant Records. Manage each attendee’s profile information and payment history and keep all of their information organized.
- Staff Manager. Save time and keep your data organized by reusing staff profiles for multiple events or displaying profile information such as team member’s contact information, resume and photo using a shortcode in your event description.
- Categorize Events. If you have several different types of events like free and paid, workshops and breakout sessions, different kinds of courses, etc. you can categorize these to help your attendees to find what they’re looking for. You can display all events in a category on an event category page, make events searchable by category, and color-code events on the Event Espresso events calendar to make these easier to find, as well as suggesting other events in the categories that interest your existing customers.
Extra features include:
- Define Extra Meta Information. This allows developers to have more control and options over the content of your events and how your information displays to visitors.
- Metabox Management And Reorganization. Event Espresso leverages the WP user interface, which gives you the ability to reconfigure the user interface to suit your workflow. Each control box can be collapsed, re-arranged or deleted from the page.
- Flexibility, Autonomy & Value For Money: According to the mission statement on their website, Event Espresso’s aim 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 company operates on a modular that provides users with great autonomy and flexibility and delivers value for money as a result.
The premium version of Event Espresso also includes 40+ added features, including:
- Email shortcodes that includes registrant data in confirmation emails and newsletters.
- Default surcharge (similar to applying a service tax to every ticket).
- Category titles and descriptions on event listing pages.
Event Espresso Add-Ons
As well as a comprehensive number of features, Event Espresso provides “add-ons”, which allow you to further enhance the functionality of managing an event.
Some of these addons include:
- Events Vector Maps Template Add on: The Vector Maps custom events list template lets you display upcoming events by location. 4 maps are currently available: USA, UK, Canada and Australia.
- Recurring Events Drop-down Custom Template Add on: The Recurring Events Drop-down custom template lets you organize the events with many datetimes into a drop-down list.
- Events Date Range Template Add on: The Date Range custom event list template lets your users to search for events that occur within a certain date range.
- Social Media Buttons Add-on: The social media addon displays Facebook, Twitter and Google+ buttons in your events. The Social Media addon comes free with all of the Event Espresso support licenses.
- WP User Integration: The WP User Integration addon allows you to take full advantage of the WordPress user system. With the WP User Integration add-on you can give users a special incentive by offering member prices and overriding event pricing when members are logged in. You can even set up member-only events where only registered users of the site can have access to these special events. Members can also store personal information into their profile page allowing them to quickly register for events by auto-filling in the personal information on the event booking form. Your users can also view previous events and make payment for events.
- Seating Chart Add on: The seating chart add-on is great 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 add on lets you offer reserved or assigned seating to your events and venues from your WordPress site. The Seating Chart add on lets you manage the experience for your customers and design assigned seating charts and attach a single price to every seat.
- Multiple Event Registration Addon: The Multi-Event registration add-on gives your potential attendees 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 Multi-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.
- EE4 Events Calendar Add on: This add-on uses the WordPress calendar to display events and categories of events using a nice graphical calendar.
- Infusionsoft Integration Add-on: With the Event Espresso 4 Infusionsoft integration all-in-one sales and marketing software add-on, you can easily automate your customer relations and email marketing campaigns to seamlessly capture event attendee data, track bookings, and accept payments from your website.
Note: Event Espresso regularly adds new features and improvements to its plugin, including new addons.
For full details about the latest Event Espreso features and add ons, check out the plugin here:
Below are just some of the testimonials that plugin users have written about Event Espresso:
”It’s been very comprehensive and covers exactly the aspects of event registration that we needed for our site plus some features that we didn’t even need but could still use in the future. Very Excellent Plugin!” Tristan Hall, Area 12:2 Youth Group
”When you can get a company to expend more money switching systems just to use your plugin…you’ve really accomplished something.” David, House of Prayer
”Loving the functions and support from Event Espresso. One of the best plugins I’ve ever bought!” Nathan
Whether you are an education services provider, presenter, workshop planner, or event management professional, there are just countless possibilities of what you can do with the Event Espresso plugin.
After purchasing the plugin and becoming a licensed user, visit the user forum for inspiration and practical ways to improve your event management and registration workflow and enhance the experience of your event registrants.
Event Espresso works with with most WordPress plugins and themes that follow WordPress coding standards. If you experience issues with the plugin, however, you will find that Event Espresso provides highly responsive user support, as many of its plugin customers confirm:
”It’s magical. Support is amazing, plugin is simple to use, a 3 year old could use the iPhone app…it all is very impressive and professional.” David, House of Prayer
The Event Espresso software provides robust support including access to a support forum, comprehensive online documentation with faqs, knowledgebase and how tos, one-on-one support and even a monthly VIP member pass giving 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 WordPress developers with a solid track record of support, so this is definitely a plugin you can count on to manage your events.
Event Espresso is available in a number of editions, including a FREE basic edition (named Event Espresso Decaf). For support and advanced software options, however, you need to consider purchasing one of the premium plugin editions below:
- Personal Licensing – This lets you run Event Espresso on 1 site only. It includes 51+ Premium features, (add ons sold separately) and one year of upgrades and support. Price = $69.95.
- Everything Licensing – This license option lets you set up Event Espresso on one domain only. Price includes 51+ Premium features, 29 Premium add-ons and 1 year of upgrades and support. Price = $279.95.
- Developer Licensing – This license option enables you to configure Event Espresso on 5 domains. Price includes 51+ Premium features, (add ons sold separately) and one year of upgrades and support. Price = $249.95.
Pricing details of the Event Espresso plugin depends on whether there are any promotions or limited-time specials being offered. Currently, the software retails for the pricing shown above. Check the plugin’s website for current pricing details: Event Espresso – Event Management And Ticketing Registration Software For WordPress
Note: The pricing above was current when this review was written. This may or may not be the actual price charged by the plugin author when you visit the website.
Additional Plugin Info
The Event Espresso development team is continually adding new features and improvements to its plugin. Make sure to register for their newsletter when you visit their site to receive the latest information and updates.
Use the software’s online documentation tools for answers to common questions about setup and using Event Espresso, and visit the support forums for questions related to a specific use-case, or to notify developers about bugs and share feedback.
For all documentation, demos, downloads, videos, tutorials, FAQ and more, visit the Event Espresso product website.
Event Espresso is the leading WordPress event registration and ticketing manager software, used and trusted by thousands of event managers.
If you own a WordPress-powered site and you intend to run any event that involves scheduling dates and venues, enrolling participants, and/or selling seating, then you will probably not find a more suitable solution for your needs than Event Espresso.
For more details, check out the plugin here: Event Espresso – Event Management And Ticket Registration System For WordPress