If you’re a business owner, you probably know that your website can be more than just an online business card.
With a little effort (and a little help from your friends), your website can be the hub of your own online marketing web — supporting ad campaigns, blog posts, social media activity, and lots more.
There might come a point, however, when you want to move some of this online activity into the real world. Maybe you’re inviting your favorite clients to a BBQ, hosting a seminar, or organizing a fundraiser for charity.
Whatever your event, managing the guest list and RSVPs online is a lot easier than mailing out invitations and hoping for the best. If you’re ready to take advantage of your online presence and offer tickets to a real-world happening, knowing how to sell tickets online for an event is a crucial step.
Our Preferred Event Planner — Eventbrite
When we’re planning an event and want to invite people online, we use Eventbrite, a discrete system that makes it easy to create, promote, and host events.
Eventbrite provides a template for quickly inputting event information, allows you to put event registration on your own site easily, and offers a secure payment portal. Their tools also make it easy to promote your event through social media channels like Facebook and Twitter.
We’ve planned a few get-togethers through Eventbrite and all have been successful — at least on the planning side. (Sometimes we buy too many donuts for our events and have lots of leftovers, but we call that a good problem to have.)
Other Event Planning Sources
If you don’t want to outsource your events to a system like Eventbrite, WordPress offers a selection of plugins that can give your current website the functionality it needs to create and manage these events under your own specific umbrella.
While this might sound like a more convenient solution, the fact is that these plugins are often complicated to set up and maintain, especially over the long term.
We’ve written about our limited use of plugins elsewhere, but the most relevant reason for thinking twice in this case is that the security in place for third-party WordPress plugins aren’t always as strong as WordPress itself.
Further, if the a plugin stays on your site and its security lapses over time, your event attendees’ data could be at risk.
Finally, these outsourced systems usually require additional third-party resources — payment gateways, merchant service providers, etc. — to complete the functions that Eventbrite offers in its one-stop shop.
Whatever outlet you choose for selling tickets to your event online, remember that the quality of your planning service won’t make or break your event. If you provide worthwhile content that engages your audience, those seats will fill up eventually. Good luck!