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RegOnline: Online Event Management Platform [Review]

By Becki Cross

RegOnline by Lanyon is an event online event management and registration platform. Here is our review.

Lanyon

Lanyon provides software solutions for corporate meetings, events and travel programs. One of their products is RegOnline® by Lanyon which is an online registration and event management tool.

RegOnline: What Is It?

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RegOnline offers an online ticketing solution for simple or complex events, including multi-day events and events with multiple sessions and strands. Travel and accommodation bookings can also be handled through the tool. The package includes venue searches and RFPs, event statistics and reports, event marketing and monitoring.

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The Main Categories of Features Are:

Event Venue Sourcing

The platform offers a venue finding tool which allows you to send RFPs to venues which match your search criteria and monitor responses directly via the portal.

Event Registration

Customise your online registration site to your own branding. Bespoke registration paths can be created for different types of registrants and conditional logic questions added. Additional items such as merchandise, additional events or accommodation can be made available via the registration process.

Event Management

Gather feedback and create automatic communications using merge fields, for example emails chasing up any unpaid balances a month after registration. Set up custom reports, including comparing data from two different events.

Event Marketing

Issue email invitations with tracking. Embed the registration site into your existing company or event website or access it as a standalone site.

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Review

There are many different online registration providers in the marketplace with different capabilities and limitations. RegOnline offers some advanced features which experienced planners will appreciate. Some of the features may however be too advanced or appear too complex for those planning small, simple, one-day events.

Via RegOnline you can specify a bespoke registration path for different ticket types. For example an exhibitor can have a very different booking process to a VIP, speaker or general attendee. You can also use conditional logic questions to find out supplementary information for example from someone that is attending the event for the first time.

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As standard the attendee must enter their email address at the first stage of the online booking. Although this may be considered a barrier and off-putting to some it means that you can capture an immediate means of communication to follow up with those that are obviously interested in the event but perhaps do not complete their booking, giving a better chance to convert these abandoned bookings at some point before the event.

The booking process is over a number of short pages, rather than on a long single page form. You can rename the pages as required. If you wish to add optional items such as additional seminar sessions, dinners, exhibition booth, merchandise, shipping, donations, additional attendees, these can all be added into the booking before checkout. Documents can be uploaded during the registration process which is useful for instance if abstracts are being submitted.

One frustration is that the system can automatically update you when there is a modification to a booking by the attendee, however, it doesn’t highlight exactly what information or field was amended, meaning additional detective work is required comparing old and revised data.

If accommodation is required the rooming lists can be managed manually by the organiser or the booking can simply redirect onto the suggested hotel for the attendee to book directly after checkout. It is however also possible for Lanyon Passkey integration, which allows bookings between RegOnline and the hotel to be made in real time without intervention and therefore a good time-saving for planners. The room blocks can be set up in advance limiting the number of rooms and offering for example Suites only to those booking a speaker or VIP ticket and standard rooms or a range of room options for general attendees.

Unlimited users and roles can be set up to work with the platform. The dashboard shows visual graphs and pie charts of the number of bookings and other stats. The ‘Event Snapshot’ gives a useful high-level overview of bookings and information related to your event. You can also set up bespoke smart reports and links so that a client can check on registrations in real time at any point, without having to request an update from the event manager. Cross-event reports are also a useful way to compare data between two different events.

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The registration site can be embedded into your own website via a simple hyperlink or you can design buttons to click through to the registration site directly. You can also add the HTML code via a frameset, although this isn’t supported by RegOnline. An area which could be improved is the social media sharing which seems fairly basic and is only available via Facebook, Twitter and email sharing.

Emails can be sent out to 5k contacts per event per month with a limit of 25k per account per month. Smart communications are possible - for example, a follow-up email reminder could be only sent out to those that haven’t registered or declined the event from the event invitation. You can also schedule automated messages, for example, email a reminder that the balance is due for payment to those with fees outstanding a set number of days prior to the event or after the booking is placed.

It is possible to allow part payment of the event fees at checkout if you wish to offer this option and you can allow payment by card via a number of different gateways or offline via BACs and cheque. International events can set the currency and relevant rate of tax. The invoice is generated automatically from a standard template which cannot be adapted. You can choose to absorb the booking fee or to pass them on to the attendee to pay.

As part of the package, a web-based mobile event app is automatically created from the information in the system, without requiring any extra setup. As it is a web-based app it works across all smartphones and delegates can update their booking details and see their personal schedule, based on the sessions chosen via the online registration site.

Features

Event Venue Sourcing

  • Venue search by location, price, space requirements, amenities and more
  • Database of over 100k venues worldwide, mainly hotels
  • RFP creation
  • Simple management of RFP responses
  • Integration with Lanyon Passkey hotels to encourage room booking at time of attendee registration

Event Registration

  • Customise the registration site to your branding, including an in built colour picker to match colours exactly to your logo
  • Unlimited registrant types with bespoke registration experiences if required
  • Group registration
  • Enhanced security with optional access codes, passwords
  • Flexible personal data collection
  • Simple or complex agendas, schedules and sessions
  • Additional purchases such as merchandise, accommodation, additional conference seminars
  • Capture payment via credit card or other payment methods
  • Provide discount and invitation codes as needed

Event Management

  • Set goals for registrations
  • Track and export attendee registrations in real time
  • Monitor revenue and invoices for balances owed
  • Create smart scheduled communications
  • Handle cancellations, transfers, substitutions and more
  • Gather feedback before, during and after the event
  • Handle onsite check-in via mobile or kiosk, including barcode or QR code scanning
  • Create custom badges and labels
  • Review numerous standard event and cross-event reports
  • Create custom reports with any combination of data
  • Easily share live reports to stakeholders via a smartlink

Event Marketing

  • Publish to Twitter, Facebook and event directories
  • Email invitations with smart tracking
  • Embed registration in existing websites
  • Web-based mobile event app included in package

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Who Is It For?

Regonline is suitable for event planners working for corporations, not-for-profits and agencies working on events of all sizes. Event managers working on medium to large projects will benefit most from the suite of features.

It is a self-service tool but additional support and professional services, such as set-up, are available for a premium if required.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Easy and intuitive, but fully flexible to meet the needs of complex events.
  • Smart communications and scheduling.
  • Unique venue sourcing tool.
  • Room night booking options, including Passkey integration.

Cons

  • The system can automatically update you when there is a modification to a booking by the attendee however it doesn’t highlight exactly what was amended.
  • Social media sharing and integration could be improved.
  • Limited editing is available to the invoice template.
  • More sophisticated budgeting, onsite tools, mobile app and lead retrieval solutions are available, including for additional cost within other Lanyon products.

Pricing and Plans

RegOnline is priced on a flat fee per registration, regardless of ticket price. The price varies per region and country. Discounted pricing is available for non-profits and based on volume. Organisers can choose to pass on the RegOnline fee to the attendee if they prefer or split the cost.

There is then a payment processing fee ranging from 0.95% to 4.95% depending on the type of gateway used and the payment processing service needed.

In Conclusion

RegOnline by Lanyon is a one-stop solution for busy event planners to manage event registrations from start to finish. The flat fee per registration, rather than a percentage rate of the booking total will appeal to many organisers, as will the sophisticated features which are included as standard.

For very simple, small, one day events or free events an alternative platform may be considered but for experienced planners and particularly for events with complex agendas, multi-day events, supplementary sessions, accommodation, travel or merchandise RegOnline should definitely be explored.

Disclosure: Reviews are paid for placements. While Event Manager Blog receives a fee to extensively look at the tool and review it in detail, the content of the review is independent and by no means influenced by the company. If you have any question please use the contact us section.

about the author

Becki Cross
Becki Cross is Managing Director of Events Northern Ltd, a UK event and conference management company established in 2004. Becki set up the business in her early twenties and is particularly passionate about conferences, innovation, entrepreneurship and the legacy of events. Becki is also the Deputy Editor, Community Manager and Contributor to EventMB, her dream job alongside event planning! Follow Becki via @beckitrain.
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