Finding a budget friendly virtual event platform is like walking down the cereal aisle in Mega-Mega-Mart. There are so many platforms, so many pricing structures, and so much sugar coated garbage to filter through that you almost want to throw up your hands and say screw it, the kids are just gonna eat buttered toast. While we love a good piece of toast, we don’t think you should give up on the cereal just yet, there is a whole lotta awesome in the aisle, you just have to know which ones the kids will eat.
To that end, we have taste-tested a ton of choices for you; no, we are not diving into the features of each because there are too many to list. Know that they all offer the ability to have your attendees login and participate in a virtual event. Some will use built in streaming, some integrate with platforms like Zoom or Vimeo. Some have live Chat, while some have video based networking tables. Our suggestion is to check out all of them because they are all great, it will just depend on your appetite.
Here are our top picks for budget friendly virtual event platforms.
Attendify is the Cornflakes of virtual event platforms. Good, wholesome, and part of a balanced breakfast and just like cornflakes, Attendify has a million and one uses beyond your morning meal. Event registration, event websites, and a top notch mobile app (that many of our clients use)… is all there, but just like Cornflakes, it sometimes gets forgotten when the kids see the Count Chocula. Don’t worry, once you outgrow the sugar, you always go back to what is good for you.
A client selected Attendify for an event in October 2021 and had ZERO issues. Not one. All of the sessions went without a hitch, the attendees loved it, and it is the platform of choice for next year’s virtual or hybrid conference.
Cost – Starts at $1999 per event
AirMeet is like Special K Red Berries. A little bit of wholesome, a little bit of sugar, 100% awesome. Virtual networking tables, Check. Easy to set up, Check. Exhibit Booths, Check. Inexpensive, Check. Backstage for speakers, Check. Call an attendee up to the virtual stage, Check. What’s not to love. AirMeet is so good that it is quickly becoming the platform of choice for many of our clients regardless of their budget.
Cost – Starts at $99 per month
Check out AirMeet
Hubilo is the Mueslix of the virtual world. There is no reason why you should like it but you do… and it turns out to be good for you! One of the most robust solutions on this list, Hubilo offers virtual networking tables, exhibit booths, breakout rooms, and more. You can use Zoom or Vimeo to power your sessions or use their Zoom licenses so that content is viewable directly on the platform.
Cost – Custom quote but starts at around $3000
Check out Hubilo
Chex. WordPress is Chex. It can be all things to all people. Splash some milk on it and it is breakfast. Add Worcestershire, seasoned salt, and other odds and ends, throw it in the oven, crack open a beer, call some friends, and you got a party! This is what makes WordPress both alluring and very dangerous… In the right hands it can create an amazing virtual experience but in the wrong hands it brings nothing but pain and suffering.
Cost – Free but expect to pay for a theme, plugins, hosting, and if you are smart, a developer
Check out WordPress
Eventee is like an Aldi brand. It looks like Fruit Loops, tastes like Fruit Loops but the name on the box is Fruit Rounds. Don’t let it dissuade you, it tastes just as good as the real thing. Yes, the package might be a little funky but the kids will never know if you don’t tell’em. It is a robust solution with a mobile app thrown in for good measure. In fact, Eventee is more like a mobile app with a virtual platform bolted on so maybe Frankenberry is a more apt analogy.
Cost – Free to $1999
Check out Eventee
Keep an eye on EventsFrame, it is one of our top picks for event registration… but all things must evolve so Cheerios becomes Honey Nut Cheerios to entice a whole new generation with a slew of virtual event tools. They launched their new virtual product in the first quarter of 2021 with unlimited events, unlimited attendees, networking, chat, Q&As, polls, live streaming, a marketplace, and pre-defined 3D virtual lobby spaces…so it is worth a look. I will say, this is one that we have no experience with so I can’t tell you if it is good or bad… Just one you might want to have a look at!