experiential event planning ideas

The Best Event Management Tools On The Market (And Some Are Free!)

Event management tools are a topic we love talking about. Mainly because experiential marketing stats show that the use of event management software increases attendance by 20%, productivity by 27%, and profit margin by 20-30% on average.  

And with so many more free event management tools online these days, it’s no wonder why more and more event planners are checking out what’s available.

We’ve come up with the top event planning tools based on reviews from real users, their relative scores on software ranking websites like Capterra, and standout features we know event planners will love. But before we dive in, here’s more on how to choose event management software for your next big project.

See How to Choose the Best Event Management Tools

Choosing the right event management system can take a long time. Which is why guides like these are helpful when narrowing down your selection. But when you have to make your final decision, keep these tips for how to buy software in mind:

  • Case studies and peer reviews are your best friend during this process. The info found in these resources adds credibility to the product, just make sure you use sources that hold reviewers accountable (like how G2 Crowd requires every new review to link with the reviewer’s LinkedIn page).
  • Look for prices that are clearly stated or easy to obtain. Although many SaaS companies are moving away from showcasing dollar signs on their websites (according to this pricing transparency study), pricing that is at least in line with market averages and reflects the power of its relative features is still one of the top ways to choose software, experts say.
  • The tool is easy to use. User interface design is important because it makes navigating and implementing the tool much easier. Regardless of how cool its features are, if the event management tool is easy to use you’ll have a better chance at immediate adoption across your entire team if it’s functional and intuitive.

And now, here are some online event management systems with reliable rave reviews, free or defined pricing structures, and user-friendly features to kick start your event planning process.

Discover the Top Event Software & Tools (Some Are Even Free!)

1. Cvent

Cvent’s event management platform automates and simplifies the entire planning process. Start with sourcing your venue and end with custom dashboards and reports after your event.

We have everything covered. You can see all of Cvent’s capabilities right here (we’re sure you will find what you need!).

2. Social Tables

Social Tables brings you the best of venue sourcing, event diagramming, guest management, and check-in. The free event planning tools let you create to-scale diagrams in minutes. You can map out all the smallest details and share them with venues, clients, and collaborators. In addition, Social Tables helps you manage guests ” from VIPs to special meal requests ” and visually seat them in diagrams.

Social Tables also creates award-winning platforms for hotels and venues, including CRM Software, Event Sales, and Event Services platforms.

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3. Tripleseat

Tripleseat is the best event planning software for unique event venues. It’s a web app for sales and event management built mainly for restaurants, hotels, and venues. With Tripleseat, you can increase event sales and streamline the planning process.

You’re able to capture event leads, convert leads to bookings, create contracts and BEOs, and more. For event pros who are crazy about data, Tripleseat also gives you many reporting options to measure ROI.

4. Regpack

Use Regpack to customize registration forms and create unlimited attendee types. You can check in guests with a mobile device or let them check themselves in. You can even embed the software on your website’s sign-up page.

Other features include group registration and encrypted payment processing. You can also add a cart and express checkout if you choose to sell products alongside the event. After that, use the software’s survey feature to get feedback from attendees.

5. Member Solutions

Member Solutions was originally created to process membership registrations, so it’s popular among fitness studios. Since it was founded in 1991, it has expanded to include various tools for planning events.

Its event registration feature makes it easy to create signup forms, liability waivers, and other attendee paperwork using a library of templates. All forms are white-labeled and can easily be branded by with your company logo. If you also dabble in marketing, Member Solutions’ email marketing feature can also help keep attendees up to date about your event.

6. Caterease

Caterease simplified the catering portion of event planning. With Caterease, you can create visual menus for guests. And for the back of the house, you can create ingredient lists and food prep lists for the cooks.

Guests can enter their own food selection. Then, you can use the data to determine how much food and beverage you need. Caterease’s interface might remind you of Microsoft Word and Excel, so there’s almost no learning curve.

7. Fonteva

Fonteva lets you manage an unlimited number of events with a single annual fee. This service is especially popular in the hospitality industry. Westin Hotel, in fact, is one of its regular users.

Fonteva is a good choice if you’re planning an event that will attract overseas guests. The system has over 100 payment options available, letting attendees pay for tickets and other items without worrying about currency conversions.

In addition, planners can also set up a temporary event microsite to keep guests engaged. For instance, you can share forums, contests, and other online activities in the days leading up to the event.

8. Hubb

If you’re a corporate conference manager, it might feel like you’re always chasing down programming info for your event. Hubb can solve this problem. This software offers a way to get the content you need for your events quicker.

By empowering speakers to upload their own information, Hubb reduces admin time by 67%. Imagine what you could do at an event if you had 67% of your time back!

9. Momice

Momice is an all-in-one event software that handles everything from registration to website building to event statistics. Although the pricing is based on Euros, the solution is available to anyone with an internet connection, regardless of where they’re located. Starter packages include access to the event planning tools for a total of 3 events and you can add up to 5 users at a time.

10. DoubleDutch

DoubleDutch is all about community building. Their four-pronged strategy consists of designing delightful attendee experiences, future-proofing events themselves, facilitating high-volume event planning, and leveraging a network of partners. Among its glowing reviews, the most common phrases used include user-friendly and great app.”

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11. Everwall

Looking to incorporate social media for events into your event design? Everwall has got you covered with the tools needed to create a customized and social media wall with real up-to-the-minute social media activity from all your attendees. Brands like CNN, Forbes, and Microsoft are among their elite clientele.

12. Monday

You may have seen their cheerful and creative ads on YouTube lately, as this team and project management software has become a staple in most planners’ event toolkits. Whether you’re overseeing a team of in-house planners or you’re working to get all your event vendors on the same page, Monday offers a highly visual tracking system with simplified status updates.

While they aren’t specifically tailored to events, you can easily customize this tool for any collaborative project, including conferences, seminars, and road shows.

13. Boomset

Powerful on-site event tools are the name of the game at Boomset. Manage on-site check-ins, print badges, redeem vouchers, and a whole lot more with this event management tool. The marketing platform will also help you collect event data and promote an event. It’s a great addition to any other event management software suite.

14. Akkroo

Akkroo captures qualified leads at events through digital marketing automation and CRM features. They get bonus points for being easy to integrate with other popular business tools, including Salesforce, HubSpot, and Marketo.

15. Attendify

This mobile event app and online registration tool offer flexible pricing based on the size of your next event. Some of Attendify’s standout features include linking to attendees’ social media pages, an event agenda that is easy on the eyes, event sponsor tools.

If you’re wondering how to get event sponsors, this is one good way to do it.

16. Oveit

Oveit calls itself the last mile of payments because it provides a closed-loop payment solution for events and event venues. They’re mostly used for festivals and conventions where there is a high volume of individual vendors or expected overall sales.

The free version of Oveit allows up to 1,000 customers, so if you have a small product activation or elite VIP event coming up, you might want to consider giving this a tool a test run there.

17. rsvpBOOK

This customizable tool streamlines the whole invitation and event registration process. Well-suited for classes and multi-track workshops, rsvpBOOK helps users share ticket links on social media, manage on-site event check-ins, and quickly create event reports from automatically captured data.

It’s also worth noting that their past client samples include large art education conferences and data protection summits, so they’re no stranger to the B2B world either.

18. Brushfire

Brushfire is an industry-specific tool for online event registration and ticketing. They mostly cater to churches and ministries, which is why their unique features serve as a standout example of the power of niche software.

Overall, the tool is still very versatile ” offering the highest quality data compliance, participation software, and customization options in the events industry. Even if you’re not planning a faith-based event, Brushfire is still worth giving a second look.

19. Gather

Restaurants, event venues, and caterers will love this event management tool built with them in mind. Gather’s main goal is to streamline venue booking processes, but users also note how much they enjoy the email communication tool and how easy the platform layout is to navigate.

20. GiveSmart

GiveSmart is a mobile fundraising software perfect for your next gala or silent auction. Whether you’re a non-profit or a tech startup, fundraising tools like event ticketing, mobile bidding, and event reporting help brands make the most of their in-person affairs.

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21. Guidebook

This app-building tool specializes in servicing everything from small events and large enterprise affairs. Guidebook event provides helpful templates, integrations with platforms like Mailchimp and Salesforce, as well as useful resources for further developing through their open API system.

Their customer service teams also won multiple awards for their expertise this year.

22. Allcal

Allcal is a community-driven calendar app (that would pair nicely with other community-based tools like the aforementioned DoubleDutch). Their clients vary from monthly game night amateurs to seasoned multi-day tech conference organizers.

So no matter what type of event you’re planning, you might want to check out Allcal’s registration, scheduling, and mobile app calendar tools.

23. Avochato

Avochato is a CRM that makes texting your attendees updates, reminders, or real-time event schedule changes simple and straightforward. Your customer service and events team control the messages coming and going through a collaborative platform.

All in all, Avochato is a useful tool for before, during, and after events for both the sales and marketing departments.

24. Topi

Hosting our favorite tagline on this list of event management tools (“engineered serendipity”), Topi boasts a quick and affordable event planning solution.

The platform’s strengths include an app for your attendees to network on via their mobile devices, event registration and check-in tools, and simple lead retrieval capabilities.

25. GruupMeet

GruupMeet strives to be the super-simplified version of all the other tools on this list. Their tools cover most event planning tasks and offer unique features like two-way team texting, flight searches, and event analytics in their most streamlined formats.

Attendees who want to use the tool don’t have to download any apps or create new accounts, which might be a plus for your event target market.

26. Trello

Trello is another great list-making and project management tool that plays nice with event planners. Their board and card system offers visual tools that keep collaborators on the same page. And their intuitive at-a-glance project update interface helps planners feel sane at any given moment of the event process.

27. Conference Tracker

An Engineerica product, the Conference Tracker is one unusually specific attendance tracking tool we had to include on this list. Most used by academic institutions, conferences, and education-related businesses, Conference Tracker withstands even the most complicated of multi-track and complex session events.

They even suggest using this tool for smaller tasks like tracking employee attendance at training seminars.

28. Ticketbud

White label ticketing and event planning platform combined, Ticketbud serves as a one-stop-shop for both small and large event planners alike. One interesting characteristic of Ticketbud is its ability to set flexible payout schedules for various event vendors using set dates, weekly, and monthly increments.

Users also say they prefer Ticketbud over similar apps (like Squarespace) because the software allows for multiple or recurring events while most others do not.

Now you’re prepared to select the best free event management software!

When it comes to shopping for the right event planning tools, your results may vary. Whether you need a hyper-specific tool for a single event task or an all-in-one event planning software capable of handling your many vendors, attendees, and event spaces, consider using one or more of these tools.  

And remember, you don’t have to pay top dollar for a quality event management solution. Tools like Social Tables offer free event diagramming and free event planning software with robust features at no additional cost to you.

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These 28 tools are just a few of our favorite event management tools. What tools are you using? Share them with us on Facebook!

More information about event management tools:

What are the event management tools?

Event management tools are software solutions that enable event planners to more effectively perform their jobs. Everything from attendee management & ticketing, to event design & marketing, to registration & check in, and beyond can be considered an event management tool.