Make it easy on yourself: Plan your content strategy before diving in
Todays post is the first of a two-part series on wedding wedsites. Next week we'll look at where to find free, and premium wedsites. But I wanted to start out with information you should put on your wedsite first.
Wedding Website Template from The Wedding Wire
It's always best to organize your information before setting up any website, including your wedsite. The temptation to plunge in to building your wedsite is great, but if you don't have a plan of action it can become overwhelming at best, and confusing to your guests at worst.
Most free wedsites are organized in such a way that you just type in the information. But the smart couple would consider compiling much of their information before diving in to developing their wedsite.Consider the following information for your own wedsite.
- Repeat the information Restate the info from your invitations for a quick reference for your guests. This is the who, what, when, where of your wedding
- Your story. This could be your love story, your engagement story, or both. I like it when the couple each posts their version.
- Transportation information. Include shuttle times if your are providing transportation, driving directions and maps, and local airport information
- Hotel accommodations Make some recommendations. Include information about block reservations. Mention other area attractions you recommend.
- A little bit about the venue, Here's where you can make suggestions about appropriate attire. I see a lot of questions on wedding boards asking how to tell family members to dress up or dress down. Your wed site is a fantastic piece to do this. Also add information about the facilities. Is it grassy, which is difficult in heels? Is parking nearby? It is easily accessible to disabled and elderly persons. Is there a store nearby in case someone needs something in a pinch? Are there wild temperature fluctuations, i.e. does it get chilly in the evening?
- Information about the bridal party and family members Keep in mind that there will be many people who do not know each other at the wedding. Including information about key players in your lives is helpful, and can serve as an icebreaker at the actual wedding.
- Schedule of events: As a guest, it's nice to know what to expect through out the day and be able to plan accordingly, especially for guests that may have special needs.
- Childcare options/instructions Are children welcome at your wedding? Here is where you should state whether or not children are invited and what kinds of arrangements (if any) you have made for child care. If there are any special considerations for parents, i.e. you will be near a lake or other body of water, you may want to mention this and offer solutions for keeping their children safe.
- If you are doing a big DIY wedding an need help, provide a list of jobs or a wish list here
- FAQ specific to your wedding. You can also wrap other elements into this such as dress code and venue information. This is also a good place to talk about your "and guest" policy and whether or not children are invited, and your alcohol policy (if you feel you need to explain). Also, if you are serving light hors d'oeuvres, or cake and punch, please let your guests know so they can plan appropriately
- Registry information. Nuff said.
- Guest book, this is a nice way for family members and friend to wish you well. It's also a nice way to build a sense of family and community among folks who have not yet met
- Other Details: Music, menu, ceremony readings, special ceremony elements, wedding colors/ theme
- Planning blog If you are inspired to journal about your planning experiences, by all means, go for it. It can help keep family and friends connected and give them something to talk about during the wedding.
- Special requests: i.e. serving dishes, china, quilt fabric, music, recipes, old books or letters, something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue, what ever you need.
- Lots of pictures and video If you have it