Seeing people register for your competition is an event unto itself. It’s exciting to see attendance numbers go up, divisions round out – and, of course, revenue increase.
That’s why it’s key to have a great registration experience. When the registration process is well-planned everyone wins, from your athletes to your volunteers.
Here are seven things you’ll want to consider as you setup a seamless registration experience:
Table of Contents
Limit Registration Access
There are times where you might want to close registration to the public. For example, maybe you’re giving select athletes first right of refusal to the available spots (like the Rogue Invitational). In this case, you’ll want to make sure that your registration page is accessible via a private link.
To do this, you can send out the private link manually via email and closely monitor registration so that only those who were invited end up registering.
RX Tip: Or, you can use Strongest Compete’s Access + Invite feature to invite selected athletes to a private access link. You can even send time-sensitive batches of invites with Strongest, as well as require that the registration email matches the invite email. We call this setting “Batch and Match” (okay, we don’t really call it that, but we should 😉 ).
You can also monitor which athletes have opened your email, accepted your invite, or let their invitation expire. Strongest Compete will even tell you if an email bounced back, so you can be sure you have the correct email address for your athlete.
Just like a workout, it’s easier to pick up momentum after you’ve warmed up. To help generate word-of-mouth, you might want to consider inviting athletes from past competitions. This is a nice way to recognize your athlete’s history and support of your competition – and an opportunity to offer them something special, like a discount code or free swag.
Make sure to include a brief message with some details of your event, like this:
We loved having you at the 2021 Paradise Challenge, and would love to have you back this year.
This year, we have bigger prizes for all divisions, a new venue and new equipment.
1st Place RX M/F = $2,500
2nd Place RX M/F = $1,500
3rd Place RX M/F = $750
***PLEASE NOTE: We are holding your exclusive RX Division spot for seven days. You must accept your invite below before then or your spot will be given to the next available athlete.***
See you at Paradise Challenge 2022!
[LINK TO INVITE-ONLY REGISTRATION]
Here’s what it looks like formatted using Strongest Compete (the platform will automatically insert an “Accept Invite” link):
Organize by Division
Grouping your athlete invites and registration per division from the start makes it easier for your team to stay organized throughout the rest of the competition.
For example, with Strongest, registrations are automatically grouped by division, and they’re even integrated with heat and lane assignment functionality. This means that you can easily see registration numbers by division, and then you can use the most recent registration list to create heat sheets and lane assignments list in seconds. This makes planning your event so much easier since everything is automated and updated.
If you’re not using Strongest though, make sure you can export your registration list easily so that you can create heat and lane assignments from them. You’ll also need to ensure you export regularly so you know you’re working with the most up-to-date list.
You don’t want to end up with more athlete registrations than you have a spot for, so remember to set both Division and Overall Competition capacity (aka “caps”).
Division caps are the maximum number of athletes per division. Overall Registration cap is the maximum number of athlete registrations you want to accept for this competition as a whole. If you’re not using a dedicated competition management platform, you’ll most likely need to track and calculate both division and registration caps manually. However, if you use software like Strongest Compete, these numbers will be automatically tracked and registration will turn off as soon as capacity is reached.
Your specific cap limit will come down to an array of factors like how long your workouts are, how many heats you can safely accommodate, how big your venue is/if you have multiple sites, how much equipment you have, etc. To help you with this, we suggest using Strongest Compete’s Scheduling software to play around with your workout schedules, heat and lane assignments, and transition times so you can get a better sense of how many athletes you can accommodate per division (and overall).
Coupons and Discounts
A bonus that you could offer your athletes is a discount code, like early bird registration coupons or affiliate discounts.
You can add coupons easily through the Coupons tab on Strongest Compete. Coupons can be created with a variety of options, such as dollar or percentage-based amounts off of the ticket price, expiration dates, numbers of coupons , etc.
T-Shirts and Personalization
Who doesn’t love a great competition t-shirt? Not only is it a great souvenir for your athletes and team, but it brings your event branding, sponsor marketing and competition photos to the next level.
To make t-shirt ordering easy, include the order as one of your registration fields. Under Advanced > Custom Fields, create a multiple-choice field called “T-Shirt Size”, and list down the Men’s and Women’s sizes an athlete can choose their t-shirt from.
RX Tip: If you’re not quite sure how to add a custom field to your registration form, you might want to use Strongest’s Custom Registration Fields. You can easily add a shirt order field using the feature, along with other questions like:
- Instagram username
- Favorite song so you can add it to your competition playlist (looking for more playlist recommendations? Get our free Competitions Playlist on Spotify now.
- PB numbers
Waivers Are a Must
Waivers are a must-have piece of approval when it comes to functional fitness competition. Make sure you include a waiver page for your athletes to review and agree to during their registration.
You can create your own waiver page and ask your athletes to agree to it during registration. You could also send a waiver out manually to your registrants, but then you’ll need to track each and every response – and potentially chase down those who haven’t signed the waiver.
Or, you could use a pre-built waiver form and automatically include this as part of the checkout process using Strongest Compete. If the athlete doesn’t check the box, registration can’t be completed, ensuring every registrant has accepted the waiver.
The registration process is going to be the first encounter your athletes have with your competition. Make sure to make it a good one by making it personalized, easy-to-complete, and enjoyable to do.