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Tech Tuesday: Must-Have Onsite Badge Solutions for Events

Kaitlyn Tatulli |

Male event attendee swinging a a bunch a pre-printed badges over his shoulderThe days of pre-printing badges and sorting through thousands of guest names during event check-in are over! Onsite badge printing solutions have replaced these tedious and time-consuming traditional methods. Not only do onsite badging solutions save you time, money, and energy, but they allow you and other exhibitors to focus on what really matters: forming real connections with attendees. Whether you choose on-demand printing, a mobile event app, or wearable RFID/NFC technology, incorporating an onsite badging solution into your next event can help you save money, cut check-in time, and collect attendee insights to better future events.

Onsite Badging Solutions

Thanks to the technological developments in the event industry, there are multiple onsite badging solutions you can choose from to minimize onsite event check-in hassle.

On-Demand Printing

Instead of printing badges in advance, on-demand badge printing allows you to print individual badges as each attendee arrives. 

Male and female attendees shaking hands at a networking event

This not only saves time at check-in, but when you print on-demand, badges can be personalized, edited or updated to include an attendee’s current name and title, without having to handwrite in or scratch out details. Attendees will have a professional, clean badge to network with every time. The badges can also include QR barcodes that can be easily scanned at check-in and at other booths.

On-demand badge printing also pairs well with mobile devices. Specifically, as an event planner, you can email attendees their unique tickets before the event. So, when the attendee arrives they can simply scan their ticket (off their smartwatch, smartphone, or tablet) at a self-service kiosk to print their badge.

Mobile Event Apps

In addition to using mobile devices, you can use a mobile event app to help with your event’s badge printing.

Attendee using a mobile app to check-in at an event

Some mobile event apps can turn a ticket confirmation code into a customizable NFC/RFID wristband. The ticket code is sent from a person’s mobile phone to a kiosk and is then printed. The wristband can then be used to verify an attendee’s event access, make purchases, and used to gain access to additional event sessions.

In addition to onsite badging, mobile event apps can be used to further engage attendees during your event. Specifically, the app can be used to poll attendees, keep attendees up-to-date regarding speaker sessions, or used to collect valuable insights from attendees on your event’s performance and ROI.

Wearable Technology

Like on-demand badge printing and mobile event apps, wearable technology is another onsite badging solution that can cut down your check-in wait time.

Attendee using wearable technology to check-in at an event

A popular wearable onsite badge solution for event planners is a RFID (Radio-Frequency Identification) tag. This wearable technology automatically checks attendees in and out of events or sessions, eliminating barcode scanning and check-in lines completely. Some RFID tags also capture attendee interactions, like contact information, and the sessions or exhibitors an attendee visited.

Similar to RFID technology, NFC (Near Field Communication) wristbands are being used by event planners to simplify attendee check-in. For instance, NFC wristbands can be used to check attendees into events without scanning a barcode. Attendees can also link their credit cards to their NFC wearable to pay for anything at your event without opening their wallets.

Not only does wearable technology make onsite check-in easier, but the individual, scannable codes allow you to gather lead retrieval and multi-session tracking information from attendees.

Do you use these onsite solutions at your events? Why or why not? Did we miss any on-site solutions that you use? Let us know by commenting below!

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This Post was Written by Kaitlyn Tatulli

Kaitlyn Tatulli is a graduate from Fairfield University with majors in Digital Journalism and Psychology and minors in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and Computer Science. Currently, she is receiving her MFA from Fairfield University. Kaitlyn...

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