Tips for Setting up your Event Registration Area 

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Event registration is more than just a necessary step for attendees to gain access to your event; it's the first touchpoint they have with the event, setting the tone for their entire experience.  

Event Registration

A smooth and engaging registration process not only leaves a positive first impression but also significantly enhances the overall attendee experience. Through careful planning and innovative solutions, you can transform your event registration from a mundane task into an engaging experience that excites and welcomes your attendees. 

Event Advice Basics  

As part of our Event Advice series of content, we explore from the complex strategies to the basics of events set up. Many event professionals and event planners “fell into” this industry and so our content reflects the diverse audience that we aim to support. That’s where this blog begins – the basics of setting up your badge collection or registration area at any conference or event.  

What is an Event Registration Area? 

For the novice, an event registration area is a designated space where attendees can check-in, receive their event materials and badge, and get any necessary information before entering the main event space.  

It typically includes registration tables/stations, signage, seating areas, and possibly photo booths or other interactive elements. This area is the first impression your attendees have of your event, so it’s crucial to make it visually appealing and easy to navigate. 

The Basics of Onsite Event Registration 

First impressions matter immensely at events.  

Traditional registration processes often involved long lines, paper forms, and manual check-ins, which could lead to a frustrating start for attendees. Thanks to modern event registration platforms, however, event check-in can now be frictionless, setting a positive tone right from the start. 

Planning Your Registration Area Layout 

Choosing the right location within your event or conference venue is essential.  

It should be easily accessible and capable of handling peak traffic without creating bottlenecks.  

Design your layout for optimal flow and accessibility, utilizing staggered counters and dedicating areas for specific needs, such as VIP check-in or accessibility support. Clear signage and accessible options, like lowered desks for wheelchair users, are a must to guide and assist attendees efficiently. 

Different venues will have different restrictions, requirements and experiences, so make sure to consult with your venue manager or your registration partner before finalising the layout.  

registration and badging

“CrowdComms are a professional company that we have used many times for our conferences. 
They are super helpful, professional and the staff are a pleasure to work with. Highly
recommend using Crowdcomms for your events! Great product, great staff and professional.”

Products used: Event Registration Kiosks and Live Streaming  

Event: Alzheimer Society Annual Conference  

Different Badge Distribution Methods 

Utilising multiple badge collection methods can make a great difference in how much onsite equipment you will need. For example, if you provide badges (print-at-home badges), you can reduce the number of badges printed onsite by 80% (depending on how well you communicate this to your audience). This not only saves on equipment and staffing costs but also on potentially waisted branded badge stock!  

Let’s look at some of the different types of ways you can distribute your event badges.  

Paperless Event Badges 

Moving away from your traditional badge types, paperless badges offer environmental and logistical benefits. Utilising technology for digital check-in systems such as your Apple or Google Wallet or QR codes shown on phones, not only speeds up the process but also enhances security and privacy for attendees – with unique single scan codes.  

You could also utilise RFID or NFC badge types, allowing attendees to simply tap their badge at designated check-in points. Their “tags” can then be returned at the end of the event, reducing environmental impact and providing valuable data for post-event analysis. 

E-Badges Reduce Registration Queue Times 

E-badges, integrated with event apps and pre-registration solutions, provide a seamless check-in experience. With attendees printing their own paper badges at home, they are granted “fast track” entry by not having to wait to print onsite.  

Expanding Badge Collection Points 

Depending on the size and scale of your event or conference, you could consider setting up badge collection points at key hotels and transportation hubs.  

This not only eases the registration process on-site but also offers a convenient service for attendees, meaning they can collect their badge at a time and place more convenient for them and allowing them faster entry into your event space.  

registration and badging, kiosks

Selecting the Right Technology for Your Event 

    1. Registration Software

Choosing the right registration software is pivotal. Look for platforms that offer: 

      • Customisation: Ability to tailor registration forms to capture essential attendee information. 
      • Integration: Seamless connection with CRM systems or online registration platforms such as CrowdComms payment gateways. 
      • Analytics: Real-time data insights on registration numbers, attendee demographics, and behaviour patterns is important for when monitoring event flow.  
    1. Self-Service Kiosks

Self-service kiosks can significantly reduce queue times and improve attendee experience by: 

      • Allowing attendees to check-in, register, print or update their details independently. 
      • Integrating with RFID or NFC technologies for quick badge printing or e-badge activation. 
    1. Mobile Applications

Event apps not only support e-badges but can also enrich the attendee experience by providing: 

      • Digital schedules, maps, and essential event information. 
      • Networking opportunities through in-app messaging and social features. 
      • Live feedback and survey functionalities to gauge attendee satisfaction in real time. 

 Hardware Considerations 

    1. On-site Badge Printers and Badge Kiosks

For events opting for physical badges, ensure your kiosks can print on-demand enabling attendees to effortlessly print their name badges on arrival. It’s time to say goodbye to the days of badges displayed on trestle tables and the 10-minute name hunt. 

    1. QR Code Badge Scanners 

QR code scanners facilitate quick check-ins and can be used to track attendance at various sessions, helping you gather valuable engagement data. 

    1. Reliable Internet Connection and Backup Solutions

A robust internet connection is crucial for any technology-driven registration process. Always have a backup plan, such as portable Wi-Fi devices or hardwired connections, to ensure uninterrupted service. Check with your registration partner for detailed requirements. 

By carefully selecting and implementing the right mix of software and hardware solutions, event organisers can ensure a seamless, efficient, and enjoyable registration experience.  

This not only sets a positive tone at the beginning of the event but also lays the groundwork for a highly successful and memorable experience overall. 

Event Staff Training and Assistance 

It’s important to remember that printing badges is fundamentally a human-to-human experience and that we shouldn’t leave check-in to the machines! 

Well-trained, knowledgeable staff play a crucial role in creating a positive and helpful registration experience. Ensure your team is equipped to handle various inquiries and provide special considerations for accessibility support. 

Remember the games makers of the 2012 Olympics? If you attended any events you would have seen or experienced these motivational people as they helped keep you at ease through heavily congested areas of London or the various event venues. This put event staffing at the centre of the world stage. So, plan and train your team to have a welcoming, friendly, and helpful attitude to help your attendees feel at ease and start their event experience on a positive note. 

Enhance the Welcome Experience 

People don’t like to queue, and when event traffic begins to build, frustrations could start to increase as people wait to get on with their business at your event. You could add entertainment such as live music or give away promotions during peak registration periods to keep attendees engaged and excited while they wait. Some examples of this could be hiring a local musician or magician to perform, setting up photo booths with branded props, or offering free snacks and drinks.

Efficient Onsite Event Badge Collection  

Setting up an efficient and engaging registration area is crucial for leaving a lasting positive impression on your attendees. By implementing these best practices and leveraging modern technologies, you can ensure a smooth, enjoyable start to your event, laying the groundwork for a memorable experience. 

Remember, the registration area is not just the beginning of your event; it’s the first step in creating a deeper connection with your attendees. Invest in making this experience as pleasant and engaging as possible, and you’ll set the stage for an incredible event that attendees will remember fondly. 

For further resources or professional event planning services, consider reaching out to experts who can help you bring these ideas to life, ensuring your event starts on the right note and continues to impress throughout. 

By prioritising the attendee experience from the moment they arrive, you’re not just organising an event; you’re creating an unforgettable journey. 

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Whatever your vision for your next virtual, hybrid or in-person event, we can help.

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Whatever your vision for your next virtual, hybrid or in-person event, we can help.