Example 1: Basic setup with time discounts and different participant groups

Let’s start with a simple example with the following requirements from you as an organizer (VAT does not apply in this example):

  • Two time periods: 1) early bird registration, 2) normal registration
  • Two participant groups: 1) local students, 2) regular participants
  • Three items on the registration form:
    1) the conference fee,
    2) a mug with conference and sponsor logos (optional, but included in conference fee, free of charge) and
    3) optional printed conference proceedings (all other participants will get them as digital version on a USB memory stick).

The normal fee for the conference is 300 Euros. The costs for the conference fee depend on both the time period and the participant group. Early registration is 50 Euros cheaper and local students always get a discount of 100 Euros.

The costs for the printed proceedings are always 45 Euros and do neither depend on the time period nor on the participant group.

Start by defining the time discounts:
Overview => Settings => Manage Time Discounts
Set an “Early Registration” period effective until 30/Sep/2015 and a “Late Registration” period effective from 01/Oct/2015. Make sure that the time periods are adjacent and do not overlap. The system will check for consistency and produce an error warning if the data is not consistent. It is advisable to let the first period start in the past and let the last period end after the conference. For our example we will use 1/Jan/2015 to 30/Sep/2015 for early bird and 1/Oct/2015 to 31/Dec/2020 for late registration.

Next, create two separate participant groups:
Overview => Settings => Manage Participant Groups
Give one group the group title “Regular Participant” and the other “Local Student”.

Continue by establishing two price categories:
Overview => Settings => Manage Price Categories
Use “Conference Fee” for the first price category name. Label the other price category “Printed Proceedings”. Remember that the labels of the categories are not directly shown to users. The price category “No costs apply” (for the conference mug) is set as a default and does not need to be defined.

Now define the prices for the price categories, participant groups and time discounts:
Overview => Settings => Prices

Image 1: Individual prices - Click image to enlarge

If you tried to register now as a new participant, there would be no items you could select from. So far, we have only defined the price structure, but we have not yet created the actual registration form. Thus, in the last two steps, you define event groups and events as the items that can be booked by the participants (and that use the corresponding price categories).

Define two “Event / Item Groups”:
Overview => Settings => Manage Event/Item Groups
Name the first group “Conference” and keep the default values for all the settings.
Call the second group “Additional Options”. Again, keep the default values. (In fact one group would be sufficient, but the additional group will improve the structure of the registration page).

Next, define the three “Events / Items” for our form:
Overview => Settings => Manage Events and Items
The first group “Conference” holds exactly one item: “Conference Participation”. When you create this item, first select the group “Conference”, enter the title and additional data about the registration (date, location, and everything that is included in the registration fee) and choose the price category “Conference Fee”. As you want this item to be pre-selected and mandatory during the registration process, choose 1 for “Minimal Choice”, “Maximum Choice” and “Pre-Selected Number”.

The second group “Additional Options” consists of two items. First, create the item “Conference Mug” and choose 0 for minimal choice, 1 for maximum choice, and 0 for the pre-selected number so that participants have to select the item if they really want to get the tremendous mug. Remember to choose the price category “No costs apply”, as the mug is included in the registration fees.

The second item in this group is the printed proceedings. Create the item as described above, but now set the maximum choice to 4 as you want people to be able to buy up to 4 copies of the proceedings. Please choose the price category “Printed Proceedings”.

This is how the registration page looks like for prospective participants from the regular participant group registering as “early bird”:

Image 2: Event and item selection - Click image to enlarge

Example 2: Special codes to discern between participant groups and offer different options and prices

As a conference organizer, you might give certain participant groups special options or special prices. To safeguard the access to these groups, you can define access codes for each group. These codes might already exist (e.g. as student ID numbers) or you might want to create them extra for your conference.

We will continue with our example from above. Ask “Local Students” for their student ID number, as they are offered lower conference fees. All students from your university have a student ID that starts with “UP2”, followed by seven more digits. A student ID number thus might look like this: UP21234567.

First, define the registration code for the participant group “Local Students”:
Overview => Settings => Manage Participant Groups
Edit the group. In the section “Registration Codes”, enter a so-called regular expression into the field “Regular expression to verify code (for experts)”.
Find more information on regular expressions as well as examples here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Regular_expression#Syntax
http://www.phpbuilder.com/columns/dario19990616.php3
http://www.regular-expressions.info/

For our example, the regular expression would be: ^UP2[0-9]{7}$ (UP2 followed by exactly 7 numbers). Enter this expression into the corresponding field. For the field “Unique code?” choose the option “Yes, a unique code is required that matches the regular expression”, as every student ID number is unique. The access to local student prices is now only made available for participants who enter a valid ID. It would be advisable to check the status of these participants upon arrival at the conference registration desk, as the IDs can quite easily be guessed.

Hint: You can also hide specific participant groups and only let these appear and be automatically selected when the correct code has been entered into the input field. You will find step-by-step instructions here: How to offer reduced fees for participants with a special registration code

Image 3: Special code for participant group - Click image to enlarge

Example 3: Using event groups to limit choice options for events / items

Event groups can be used to define constraints for events / items. A constraint could be that you want to limit the choice for a certain event or item within a group. Example: You offer three workshops in the afternoon of a certain day that run simultaneously. A participant can naturally only choose one of the workshops or none.

There are two ways to define this constraint: You can use check boxes or radio buttons.

Using check boxes for the choice option:

Define a new event / item group, label it “Workshops”, choose the selection mode “Normal: All events / items of this group are independent”, set the “Minimum number of items to select from this group” to 0 and (important!) set the maximum to 1.

Create three events / items for the new group “Workshops”: Name them “Workshop 1: Intelligence”, “Workshop 2: Diligence” and “Workshop 3: Maintenance”. For each workshop set the Minimal Choice to 0, the Maximum Choice to 1 and the Pre-selected Number to 0.

Please note that the maximum number will only be checked once the participant submits the registration form. Thus it is advisable to clearly identify that only one selection is allowed. Add this information as an extra item with min and max selection 0 at the top of the group (see image 4).

Image 4: Check box selection - Click image to enlarge

Using radio buttons for the choice option:

Radio buttons allow you to create an exclusive selection for a group of events / items, i.e. only one item of the group can be selected.

Define the event / item group: Name it “Workshops”, choose the selection mode “Exclusive: Use radio buttons so that only one event of this group can be selected” and set the “Minimum number of items to select from this group” to 0 and the maximum to 1.

This time create four events / items for the group: “Workshop 1: Intelligence”, “Workshop 2: Diligence”, “Workshop 3: Maintenance” and finally “No Workshop”. Set the Minimal Choice to 0, the Maximum Choice to 1 and the Pre-selected Number to 0.

It is important to know that a group of radio buttons cannot be deselected once selected. Therefore, a fourth option “No Workshop” has to be defined in order to allow participants to choose not to attend any workshop should they change their mind during registration. Please note: Admins and conference assistants can override this function and deselect a selected radio-button by double-clicking on the radio button (in the back-end of the ConfTool System).

Image 5: Radio button selection - Click image to enlarge

NB: It is always useful to include information about events and items in the registration form. For group information of Event / Item Groups, use the “Group Information” field, for Events and Items, use the “Information” field. For important pieces of information you can also use an event / item itself. Create a new item and instead of the event title, enter the information for the participants. In order for the item not to be selectable, choose the value 0 for Minimal and Maximum Choice as well as the Pre-selected Number. Choose the price category “No costs apply”. The event / item now appears as text only. Change the order of events, if necessary, to place this special “event” at the required position.

Image 6: How to include information - Click image to enlarge

Example 4: Status as a powerful tool – enabling access to certain events / items only for special participant groups

As you can see, ConfTool allows you to define certain participant groups, which allows you to offer different prices for different groups. You can safeguard the access with special codes, as explained above. Participant groups can also be used to define the access to certain events / items or block other participant groups from being able to choose certain options at all.

Our example conference has the following additional requirements: The conference dinner is already included in the regular conference fee. Students and accompanying persons have to pay 60€ extra for a ticket.

For the new items, create two new price categories and call them “Dinner Extra Ticket” and “Dinner Included” respectively.

Define the prices: Enter 60 € for all prices of the category "Dinner Extra Ticket" and 0 € for all prices of the category "Dinner Included" and save them. Then enable the Expert Settings at the bottom of the page. You can now untick the checkboxes for the price categories of items that are not supposed to be displayed for certain participant groups (see image 7). In our example, the included dinner tickets for regular participants should not be displayed to students.

Image 7: Define access restrictions via prices - Click image to enlarge

Create a new "Event / Item Group" and call it "Dinner Options", keeping the default settings.

Create two events / items for the group "Dinner Options". Name the first one "Dinner Included", set the minimal choice to 0 and the maximum to 1 and choose the price category "Dinner Included". Name the second item “Dinner for Students and Accompanying Person(s)”, set the minimal choice to 0 and the maximum to 2 (hence, regular participants will be able to invite up to two accompanying persons, students can buy one ticket for themselves and one for an accompanying person) and choose the price category "Dinner Extra Ticket". It is often useful to label the unit of an event, in this case enter “Persons”.

Now, the registration page will look different, depending on the participant status group chosen. The options "Dinner Included" will not be shown to members of the group "Local Students".

Image 8: Option only available to pre-defined participant group - Click image to enlarge
Image 9: Other participant group is blocked from option - Click image to enlarge

Example 5: Showing an event/item group only if an event/item of another group has been selected

Event/item groups and all events/items that are part of that group can be hidden or displayed depending on whether an event/item of another group has been selected by a participant.

Here is an example: Participants can either choose to attend the full 3 day conference or they can purchase a day ticket for one single day. Only when participants choose the full conference option, they should be able to state whether they will bring along an accompanying person. Participants who attend for a single day only are not allowed to bring an accompanying person.

Here is an overview of the event groups and events you will need:

- Event group "Conference Participation" 
     > Event "3 Day Full Conference Registration"
     > Events "Single Day Registration"

- Event group "Accompanying Person"
     > Event "Accompanying Guest"

Please go to the event/item group (Accompanying Person) that shall depend on the selection of another event/item (3 Day Full Conference Registration) to define the dependency:

Overview => Settings => Manage Event/Item Groups

Activate the option "Condition to Show This Group". Then click in the field below that states "Click here to select one or more options" in order to define the event (in our example choose "3 Day Full Conference Registration") or events that enable this group and all events/items contained in it (see image 10).

In our example, the group "Accompanying Person" and the event/item of that group "Accompanying Guest" will only be displayed when the event/item "3 Day Full Conference Registration" has been chosen (see image 11). This is not the case when one of the "Single Day Registration" events has been chosen (see image 12).

You can find more information here: Make choice options dependent on other items / participant groups

Image 10: Dependent item settings for event group - Click image to enlarge
Image 11: Dependent item group displayed - Click image to enlarge
Image 12: Dependent item group not displayed - Click image to enlarge

Example 6: Asking for additional information for a specific event / item

Often organizers have to ask for additional information for an event or item. Therefore ConfTool Pro offers several extra input options that can be added to each event, including a text input field, different kinds of select boxes that participants can choose from, and a date selection for items that will be charged on a per diem or on a nightly basis.

In the first example, you want to give participants the chance to inform you about special dietary requirements in a text field. Edit all items of the event / item group “Dinner Options”. Go to the section “Extra Input Field” and choose for the option “Extra Input Field” the setting “Text field: one line of text can be entered”. Choose for the mode of input “Optional: only considered if this event / item is selected” and choose an appropriate text for the “Label for Input Field/Option”, e.g.: “Please state your special dietary requirements”.

For the second example, you want to offer a conference T-Shirt in three different sizes to participants. Each participant can order one T-Shirt and the size can be chosen from a select box. Create a new price category (“T-Shirt”), define a flat price of 20€ for all participant groups and time discounts. Create a new event / item for the group “Additional Options” and call it “T-Shirt”. Select the following values for the choice options: minimal 0, maximum 1, pre-selected 0 and choose the price category “T-Shirt”. In the section “Extra Input Field” for the option "Extra Input Field" choose the setting “Select box: user may select from a list of options” and define the mode of input as optional. For the label of the input field, enter “Size” and for the list of options enter “Small”, “Medium” and “Large”, one option per line (see image 13).

Image 13: Extra input fields for events - Click image to enlarge

For the third example, you want to offer students the option to stay overnight on campus in dorm rooms. The conference lasts for four days, i.e. three nights, one night costs 25€ and students can choose how many nights they want to stay (see image 14). Again, create a new price category, define the flat price of 25€ and exclude regular participants by unticking the corresponding price boxes. Create a new item, call it “University Housing – Single Dorm Room” and assign it to the item group “Additional Options”. Select the following values for the choice options: Minimal 0, Maximum 1, Pre-selected 0 (NB: Even if a person stays several nights, he/she selects this item only once!). Go to the section "Pricing" and for the option “Charging Mode” select “Event will be charged per night (e.g. for hotels)” and set the starting and ending dates for the accommodation.

Image 14: Sample registration form - Click image to enlarge