I have never organized a race myself, but I have participated in many. I am a strong supporter of various causes. In choosing a race, however, the cause is not my number one consideration.
Here are the top 3 factors that influence me in signing up for a race:
- Registration Cost
- Organizers' Website
A poorly organized website, or one that lacks vital information gives me the impression that organizers don't care about participants. It's tough to support an institution that ignores my needs.
It's sad to see races get cancelled because of poor registration. Races abound, and compete for participants. To help entice racers, websites should vie to be concise or entertaining.
So what makes a good website? To answer this, it helps to get to know your audience first. As a runner,
- I'm in a hurry. I still have 5 other races to look at so give me the information I need in 60 seconds or less.
- This is my first time participating in this event. What can I expect?
- I have never been to the event location before. Maps would be helpful.
- I am willing to travel for a good race. Any hotel recommendations?
- I might take a car, or use public transportation. Where to park? Is there free bag check in?
- I might be with my family who is not racing. Are there amenities for them?
- Visually appealing — simple, easy to read fonts, left-aligned text, meaningful graphics
- Content— relevant and necessary, answers the question, “what’s in it for me?”
- Navigation— grouped and organized content, list pertinent info and not hide them in paragraphs
- Call to Action — link to a registration page made for your event, NOT to the registration service site. Please don't make us work more than we have to.
To help organizers, here's a checklist of information that participants need. Please consider including these to your website to help persuade visitors into joining your event.