Advertisement: RegOnline Online Event Registration Service

My most recent request from ReviewMe is a service called RegOnline, that provides hosted event registration for a per-registrant fee. Judging by my limited research, it looks like this niche is packed with companies vying to manage your event registrations. Services range from soup to nuts management of registrations, lodging, travel, and vendors, to the more streamlined services like RegOnline, that cater to a few steps in that process: accepting a registrant’s information and money, printing name badges, and tracking lodging. There are some additional features, of course, but these appear to be their bread and butter.

What do I like about RegOnline?
I like that their website is simple, and they make it dead easy to learn about their service without a lot of marketing verbiage. Their home page tells me what they do, and includes a link to their pricing. I can’t tell you how much I love seeing their pricing prominently displayed. Several of their competitors don’t have pricing at all on their site, and you have to fill out a form and talk to a sales person to get a quote. Yuck. I should be able to sign up for a free account and find out how much it costs at 3 am on a Sunday morning

What do I dislike about RegOnline?
I found their credit card processing capabilities a little confusing. Their pricing page indicates you either need an existing merchant account, in which case you have to pay a $500 setup fee, or you need to set up a merchant account (they do have a recommended vendor). From my perspective, one of the huge advantages of using an online service is that I wouldn’t have to set up a merchant account. However, when I emailed RegOnline about this, they indicated they do offer a payment processing service for a percentage fee. That service would be a make or break deal for a small-time player like myself, and I think it would benefit them to make its existence more prominent.

One other thing I disliked is that they ask for quite a bit of information to set up an account. When I’m trying three or four similar service, a simple sign-up form can make the decision of whether or not I give it a try.

Wrap-Up
Let’s be honest – if the question is developing a custom system or outsourcing your event registration, you’d better be running a ton of volume not use a service like RegOnline. With the cost of building a similar service easily in the five-figures, you’d need a heck of a lot of attendees to make back the cost of a custom application.

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