A conference is a powerful opportunity to establish authority in your industry, increase brand awareness, and inspire or entertain both prospects and your existing consumers.
Best of all, a conference can help you achieve your team’s goals. In fact, 95% of marketers believe in-person events can have a huge impact on the achievement of their company’s primary business goals.
In 2020, most of the events were hosted virtually – and this is unlikely to change in 2021 or immediately thereafter.
And in a digital-first world, a website is the first many people’s introduction to your event. A conference website can influence whether someone clicks on “Buy ticket now” or leaves the page entirely.
No pressure, right?
Here we’re going to explore 21 of the coolest, most inspiring conference websites we’ve found. Use these examples as inspiration when designing your own.
Conference website design best practices
Before we dive into the examples we’ve gathered, let’s examine some best practices that you should keep in mind when designing your own conference website.
A good conference website design should include:
- Put your location and date above the crease: People should know immediately where and when your event is taking place. If they can’t find it easily, they can leave your website entirely. Before diving into speakers or other information, make sure your visitors know if they can even attend.
- Use interactive elements: Videos or animated graphics can help make your website look elegant and professional. Video is also a good opportunity to present events from years past.
- Center the page around your visitor: What’s in it for you? Great speakers who inspire your work? A chance to network with industry leaders? Make sure your copy clearly and precisely outlines how your website visitor will benefit from your event.
- Have a clear call to action: Your site should ultimately convert web visitors into event attendees – so make this easy. Create a bold “Register Here” or “Buy Tickets” button so your visitors can easily convert when they’re ready.
- Add fun graphics: One thing that becomes apparent in all of the web designs we choose for conferences is interesting, unique, and fun graphics. Conference websites with too much white space didn’t impress me. Use visuals to grab your visitor’s attention and communicate what your event is about through images.
- Create time pressure by adding a countdown feature: On some of the websites we look at below, you can see a countdown of how many days, hours, or minutes visitors have left to register for the event. This is a fantastic way to add momentum and encourage visitors to sign up right away or they risk missing out.
Now that we’ve covered some conference website best practices, let’s see how these 21 conferences put these ideas into practice.
21 examples of the best conference website
- Leading design festival
- Screen conference
- London’s UX Fest
- GOTOpia Chicago
- Consumer Technology Association 2021
- Affiliate Summit East
- Digital Design Days
- District conference
- Collision conference
- An event in itself
- Startup Grind Global Conference
- The Martech Summit Singapore
- Reaction Day New York
- INBOUND 2021
- IBM’s thinking
- AdWorld conference
- Growth Marketing Summit 2021
- How I built this summit in 2021
- From business to buttons
- Red Hat Summit
1st leading design festival
Color is an important factor to consider when designing a website, and this homepage for the Leading Design Festival does a good job of using complementary colors to create a feeling of warmth. Plus, at the top of the page you have everything you need – including a button to buy tickets, the date of the festival, and what you get for participating (one month of Design Leadership activities). This side often proves that less is more.
2nd screen conference
I can’t think of many images that are more inspiring than the image of a rocket taking off into space and serving as the background image for the conference homepage of Canvas. Additionally, the site doesn’t shy away from bright, vibrant colors like purples, pinks, and blues to attract visitors’ attention.
Plus, the price is clearly stated so visitors know if they can afford the event before exploring any further.
3. London’s UX Fest
This scroll-triggered interactive page is so much fun that I scrolled it a few times. Going down the page will introduce you to new information about the conference with fun, unique design elements like the “Stay Home and Level Up” image to the right of the first conference box. Best of all, the site is incredibly simple and has plenty of space on both sides to create a sense of calm when attendees learn about the conference.
4. GOTOpia Chicago
One of the best features of this conference site is the “Early Bird Ends In …” countdown that appears above the fold as soon as a visitor enters the website. The sense of urgency encourages visitors to sign up immediately or they risk losing a good deal. The site also does a good job of summarizing all of the important information you need to know in just a few words – including Engaging Talks, Keynotes, and Trivia + Happy Hours.
And who doesn’t like the bright vibrancy of a red and white color scheme?
5th Consumer Technlogy Association 2021
The CES conference site uses 3D graphics to instantly grab a visitor’s attention with a simple slogan, “We Are CES Ready”. The design is lively and dynamic and looks high-tech – undoubtedly the goal of CES. The page has all the necessary information, including the date, location, and CTA, at the top of the page to ensure that CES fans can sign up immediately.
6. Affiliate Summit East
“If … you mean business” is a convincing statement that got me excited right from the start. The entire page explains well how a visitor will benefit from the conference, including the state of the e-commerce industry in 2020, and how ASE can help you. This is a powerful site making the most of the real estate to demonstrate why ASE is an important conference for everyone in retail.
For example, they write on the home page, “Right now you are probably wondering, ‘How on earth do I reach and convert buyers in the most competitive retail environment ever?’ We asked ourselves the exact same question and developed ASE21 to help you. “This page successfully keeps attendees’ needs and challenges at the forefront of messaging.
7th Digital Design Days
This colorful, elegant looking homepage uses purples and greens to create a futuristic atmosphere. What I liked best about this conference website was the moving, interactive elements that kept your interest as you scrolling the page, including exploding graphics and constantly moving debris. Give it a try – it’s more fun than you might think.
8th district conference
When attendees are choosing which conferences are worth their time and resources, one of the first questions to ask is, “Why this conference over everyone else?”
This question will be answered immediately on the Circles Conference homepage and answered with powerful, appealing text. For example, the first sentence you used in response to “Why Debunked?” Read. is “shedding scales of fear and doubt and revealing your inner creativity” – already convinced?
9. Collision conference
Seeing Seth Rogan at the top of the page is undoubtedly reason enough to take a break on the site for anyone who is a fan. Also, “The Olympics of Tech,” quoted from Politico, does a good job of demonstrating the value of the conference.
What impressed me the most, however, was the countdown “Price increase by 20% in …” right next to a light blue CTA “Book Tickets”. For anyone who doesn’t want to lose money, this is a compelling argument for booking tickets immediately.
10. An event in itself
Consider standing out from the crowd by using in-house designs on your homepage, like An Event Apart. The site is cheerful and colorful and offers all the important information in just a few words. Before a visitor has even scrolled, they have found out where (online), when and for whom the conference is advantageous.
11th Startup Grind Global Conference
Using a mix of photography and unique design shapes works well in this case, and the bright colors of purple, pink, and green you see at the top of the page contrast well with a plain black background. The page is sleek and uses three bold buttons to provide all the information a visitor needs to learn more or buy tickets.
12. The Martech Summit Singapore
If you’re hosting a conference in a unique or exciting location, consider using an image of that location as a compelling backdrop. In this case, the Martech Summit used an image from Singapore to remind site visitors of the other benefit they get when they travel from another location for the conference – a trip to a vibrant city. Plus, the attendance helps convince reluctant buyers who likely don’t want to feel like they’re missing out.
13th reaction day New York
First off, who doesn’t love hot dogs?
This React Day site does a great job of using humor to stand out. Not only is there a great illustration of a hot dog – which immediately got me excited – but there are several mentions of hot dogs, including “buy tickets” (“Psst: there will be hot dogs”) used as an answer to “why” become. right of the page.
Think about how you can use humor on your own conference website to surprise and inspire new target groups.
14th INBOUND 2021
Okay, okay – I may be biased, but listen to me.
This INBOUND page shows INBOUND 2020 speakers to delight and impress visitors with the possibilities of similar popular speakers in 2021. This is a good idea if your conference has attracted some big names from conferences in the past, to give attendees a feel for what to expect at an upcoming conference if you haven’t officially published upcoming speakers.
All the required information is also listed at the top of the page, including sponsorship opportunities and a well-known CTA “Purchase Ticket”.
One element that made this #ProductCon page, a Product School conference, special was the easy-to-find “Get Free Ticket” box, which is the focus for new visitors. Especially if your conference is online and free – which results in minimal barriers to entry – it is a good idea to make it easy for potential customers to register right away.
16. IBM’s thinking
IBM’s think side is one of the cleaner and sleeker designs on this list. It uses a light blue background and minimal text to simplify the user experience. At the top of the page is everything you need to know – including the conference theme, dates, and registration.
Think about how you can use similar powerful and concise language to let new attendees know what your conference is about.
17th AdWorld Conference
If you want to have impressive companies attending your event – including Google, Facebook, and IBM – it is a good idea to showcase them on your conference home page, as AdWorld does in the example above. The special thing about this example is the small videos of different speakers that move across the page creating a dynamic and unique experience.
18th Growth Marketing Summit 2021
One element I really appreciated about this site was the clear text, “No Risk. Order Can Be Canceled For Free …” just below the CTA, which helps allay visitors’ concerns about non-attendance and loss of money . The site uses bright colors and a futuristic looking heart to grab visitors’ attention from the start.
19. How I built this summit in 2021
NPR opens its “How I built this summit” website with a big, compelling statement: “Brave ideas need company.” The bright yellow side is simple and looks retro, especially with the comic lightning bolts in the corner.
Additionally, NPR is displaying an original hashtag for the conference, #buildwithus, so discerning buyers can search and hear reviews on social platforms before purchasing tickets after the conference.
20. From business to buttons
This theme, which reminded me a little of a carnival ride, is characterized by bright colors and unusual typography. The site is fun and unique. At the top is a neat navigation menu that visitors can use to find exactly what they’re looking for.
21. Red Hat Summit
We round off this list with an incredibly simple yet elegant page from Red Hat Summit that just says “Open Your Perspective” above the crease. The use of spaces and minimal design elements helps highlight that one sentence that piqued my interest in the conference. Also, the Register button is clear and easy to find.
Conference website templates
Are you ready to create your own?
Fortunately, there are plenty of templates available to help you create a compelling conference website.
1. WordPress conference templates
For example, if your website is hosted on WordPress, then you can use any of the WordPress themes to create an inspiring, elegant, and professional website to attract and convert attendees.
Best of all, you can start with a pre-made theme and then use WordPress’ simple website builder to add unique features to make your conference stand out. WordPress offers a free version and the business plan is $ 25 per month.
Take a look at the 21 best WordPress conference themes of 2021 for more WordPress theme inspiration.
2. Wix conference templates
Another great option is Wix, which has a great assortment of clean, interactive conference and meetups website templates. Wix offers a free option, and the Professional version is relatively inexpensive at just $ 23 a month.
You can also edit your site for cell phones to ensure that your mobile site visitors will want to attend your conference as much as your desktop attendees.
3rd Canva conference templates
Finally, check out Canva’s conference and event program templates. Canva is incredibly easy to use, with drag-and-drop functionality, color schemes, and high-quality photos, illustrations, and graphics.
Best of all, when you’re designing with your team, you can easily share your editable file from Canva and put your colleagues’ suggestions right in Canva.
And there you have it! Now you can start creating your own conference website to attract visitors and increase attendance for your own branded event. Who knows – your company might make it onto this list in the future. Good luck!