My clients often ask me about how to make their wedding website fun and useful for their guests. Your wedding website is possibly the most important tool you have for sharing information with your guests before and after your celebration. Most websites will include the vitals, like date, location and the story of how the couple met, but your website can be so much more. Remember that this is a chance to set the tone with your guests, give them a glimpse into the incredible event they are about to attend, and make it as easy as possible for them to plan for, travel to and get home from your celebration.
So how can you bring your personality into your wedding website while making it as easy as possible for your guests to arrive without getting lost? The key is in adding widgets, which are hard to define, but easy to show. These are small applications that you can add to web pages by cutting and pasting in a line of code.
Here are seven widgets that will wow your guests while making your wedding website extremely guest-friendly:
Make life easy for your guests by allowing them to search for flights to and from your destination directly from your wedding website. Many of the popular travel search engines, like Expedia and Orbitz, and Hotwire, offer their own widgets.
3) Forum for discussion
Add a discussion forum to allow your guests to chat about things like hotel room sharing, carpooling or anything else that requires collaboration.
4) Song Requests
There's no doubt that different guests can have different tastes in music. Let your guests' voices be heard with this song request widget.
5) Interactive maps Have a favorite restaurant near the wedding venue? How about hotels with special rates or a museum where your guests can spend the morning before your celebration? Add those locations to an interactive map and turn your guests into locals.
(See this tutorial on how to create an interactive Google map.)
6) Weather Help your guests know what to pack (or whether to leave the swimsuit at home) with a weather widget.
What guest doesn't love to be entertained? Show off your personality by adding some fun into your wedding website. Something like a retro PacMan game is sure to bring the smiles.
The great thing about widgets is that they are easy to add no matter how tech-savvy you are. It just takes some cutting and pasting into the HTML code of one of your wedding website pages. Just double check that the wedding website service you are using allows for custom HTML and you'll have a guest-friendly website in no time at all!
Follow Taryn Westberg on Twitter: www.twitter.com/GloWedding