In my ongoing search for an event plugin for WordPress I was contact by the people at Event Espresso via Twitter and invited to take a look at their product. These folks have obviously used and thoroughly know the needs of scheduling and managing events. Unlike many plugins, the navigation is kept to the minimum. The Event Overview controls all aspects of the event, including:
- Event start/end
- Registration start/end
- Recurring Events*
- Attendee Limit
- Venue information
- Email confirmations
- Questions to ask during the registration phase
- Discounts/coupon promotions
*Some of these items require additional plugins to work.
From the main overview screen you can see the pertinent details for all of your events.
If you click on the attendees for an event you are taken to a screen listing all of the attendees and their payment status. You can even keep track of who attended the event!
See those icons to the right? They make it easy to check the payment record, send an invoice, edit attendee information (including the cost of their ticket, resend registration details, get a PDF invoice for mailing or print a ticket.
If you use the ticket plugin, the tickets have a QR code and you can use the Event Espresso Android or IPhone app to scan in the attendees when they arrive! (Check out their post on using Event Espresso to manage Haunted House tickets)
I’ve just looked at a fraction of what this can do and I’m really impressed. The crew involved has an active Blog and support forum and their website mentions future upgrades and additional features and solicits input – which implies they will be around awhile and the plugin will stay fresh and updated as WordPress evolves.
There is a free version of this plugin that includes the following features:
- out-of-the-box event registration from your WordPress website
- process payments via PayPal IPN
- create custom event registration questions
- automated confirmation and reminder emails
- manage attendees and export attendee data
- easily manage attendees profiles
However, for $89.95 you get all of the premium features, plus the calendar and social media add-ons:
- manual registration
- additional payment gateways including Authorize.net, IDEAL, Firstdata and PayPal Pro
- multiple pricing options
- promotion codes
- custom post type support
- reusable email templates
- upcoming event calendar
- MailChimp integration (advanced & developer)
- recurring events (advanced & developer)
- members integration (advanced & developer)
- Groupon integration (advanced & developer)
- custom files (advanced & developer)
- multiple event registration (advanced & developer)
The Calendar add-on gives you a nice visual calendar:
While the social media add-on adds Twitter, Facebook and Google+ buttons to your events.
Other add-ons include:
- Multiple Event Sign-up
- Recurring Events
- Seating Chart (for events with reserved seating)
- MailChimp Integration
- Roles & Permissions (give users the ability to submit events)
Contact me if you are interested in installing Event Espresso. I am offering packages which include installation of the the premium version, all 12 add-ons, up to 1 hour of training and 30 days of email support. Find out more.
Disclaimer: Though I discovered this plugin when the Events Espresso folks contacted me via Twitter, I was neither compensated nor received free product for this review.