Running registration doesn’t need to be a stressful time for you and your volunteers. Inside this guide, you’ll get all tools & tips that will allow you to run a seamless online registration for your next season. Let us help you get off to a great start this season.
What is online sports registration software?
Online sports registration software allows leagues, clubs and associations to register their athletes for their season from their website. Compared to the traditional registration process of going to your community school, hall, or sport complex, the entire registration process can now be done from your computer, quickly and easily. For families that are juggling busy lives, this is a major upgrade for them.
For sports organizations, online sports registration software allows you to accept payment in a variety of ways, most popular being credit card, and it allows you to automatically report on and track who has registered, who has paid, and who hasn’t paid. Instead of manually registering and collecting all this data via thousands of paper registration forms, all this data is online and viewable in a couple of clicks.
With a fully customizable online sports registration software like TeamLinkt’s, registrars & admins can build custom online registration forms that collect the specific information they need. Get waivers signed & submitted, Create specific custom questions, and build and launch your forms in minutes, all by yourself.
Why registars need a fully customizable online registration software
When looking into online sports registration software options, it’s important for you to know the difference between a fully customizable online registration software and a basic online registration software.
Fully Customizable Online Registration Software:
- You create your forms and launch them without needing permission or waiting on the provider.
- You can create custom questions and collect info like skill level, signed waivers, and anything else you would need to build your teams & divisions.
Basic Registration Software:
- The provider has to build your forms or give you permission to build forms.
- Have to use pre-made generic questions. You can’t create custom questions that are specific to your organization.
- No guarantee that your form is going to be able to go live when you need it to since you’re waiting for your account rep.
How to Run a Seamless Online Registration
Step 1: Map out all the registration forms you’re going to need
Building forms is easy, but it’s not easy when you’re scrambling at the last minute because you didn’t plan out all the registration forms you need beforehand.
To make sure you’re well prepared before registration opens, create a check list of all the registration forms you’re going to need to create.
The types of registration that you’re going to need to consider are:
1. Free agent player registration: Players come to your website and get registered as an individual. After registration, they are placed on a team.
2. Registration directly onto a specific team or into a divison: Players enter a join code or select a team from a drop-down list and are automatically placed on that team during registration.
3. Coach registration:Coaches complete a registration form on your website. Typically, coaches will also answer questions about what division or team they are looking to coach, as well as their ideal role on the coaching staff (head coach, assistant coach, etc)
4. Volunteer registration: Setting up a volunteer registration will allow you to collect information of people looking to volunteer. If you have specific roles you need volunteers for, you can ask this during time of registration.
5. Officials registration: Officials or referees come to your website and register for the season. After that, your league can assign the officials to work specific games in the Officials section of TeamLinkt.
Mapping these out beforehand in a spreadsheet or on a piece of paper will reduce the chances that a form gets missed and not noticed until it is supposed to be open…
Pro Tip: If you are creating multiple forms, build out one form and then clone it to save yourself some time (including cloning last season’s form into your new season)!
Step 2: Decide on the difference ways you’re going to capture payments
One of the best parts about using a fully customizable online registration software is that you can offer your registrants more payment options, which goes a long way with parents.
When you use a fully customizable online registration software, you can add payment types such as:
- Pay now online
- Pay later online
- Pay later offline
- Payment installements
- Combinations of above
Pro Tip: Regardless of the payment method(s) that you choose to use, TeamLinkt’s online registration software will store all the data on who has paid and who hasn’t paid. Making it easy for you to go through registration and keep track of all the outstanding payments and of the participants that have paid all their fees.
Step 3 – Creating your form settings
In order to run a seamless online registration, you’re going to want to make sure that all the settings are all exactly how you want them. These are some of the setting that you’re going to want to make sure are set properly
1. Form Name: If you are registering multiple groups, like girls / boys or age groups, you’ll want to include an identifier for those specific forms so that your registrants don’t get confused and register under the wrong form.
2. Open and close date: When setting your open & close date, make sure you note the time of day that you’ll want these forms top open and close, not just the day it opens.
3. Notifications: Decide on who in your organization is going to be receiving and answering questions from participants.
4. Setting the amount of registrants you are taking: In certain situations, you may only have enough sports for a certain number of teams and registrants. Within the sesttings, make sure to input that numbers so that you don’t get an overflow of registrants that don’t have spots. Also, after the limit is filled up, registrants get placed on a “wait list” and would get notified when a spot opens up.
By double checking and making sure these settings are perfect, you’ll drastically reduce the amount of inquiries you and your team of volunteers get during the registration process.
Step 4 – Setting your terms and conditions
To make sure your forms are bulletproof remember to add in your terms and conditions, refund policies, and post/pre registration notices. This will add all the additional context that your registrants and parents need to know. It will also save you the headache if on the off chance you have to dispute a refund.
Step 5 – Save time by using pre-built questions
When you launch a registration form, it already comes loaded with the essential pre-built questions you need to ask your registrants. Questions like:
- Health ID
- Emergency Contact
These pre-built questions allow you to get your forms built faster so that you can get these registration forms active faster while also ensuring you aren’t forgetting to ask any essential questions.
Also, if you don’t see questions & fields that you need filled out, with our sports registration software, you have the ability to create your own custom questions.
Check that out below.
Step 6 – Capture the specific data you need with custom questions & fields
Since every club, league, and association is different, you’ll need to be able to create custom questions that allow you to get the specific information you need from your registrants.
When you’re building your registration form with TeamLinkt, you have the option to add all the custom questions you need. Then, save those questions in the “Questions Library” and use them across all your forms and in your next season.
Learn more about custom questions & fields here
Also, easily add discounts to your registration forms to help encourage participants to register. Or, offer discounts to families that could register more than 1 kid. However you decide to use discounts, you can easily do it within the builder.
Step 7 – Set up automated emails to prospects who haven’t finished registration yet
The growth of the leagues, clubs, and associations that use TeamLinkt is the top priority of our team. That’s why we are constantly designing & developing features that make increasing registrants easier.
With our “Prospects” feature, you can see a list of people who have started registering for your form but haven’t completed the process. Within a couple clicks, you can send automated emails reminding people to complete their registration.
Step 8 – Increase revenue by selling branded merchandise from your registration form
While participants are registering for your organization, giving them the option to purchase branded gear from your organization is an easy way to generate additional funds. Also, branded merchandise can help to increase the visibility of your league. Which will attract new players and fans to the league and can also help to build a sense of community within the league.
Adding merchandise to your registration form is very simple, all you need to do is:
- Choose items you want to offer
- Select a mark-up amount you’d like
- Choose the size and colors you’d like to offer
- Custom brand your items by adding your logo
Step 9 – Customize your registration form to your brand & preview
After you have all the meat and potatoes of your registration forms setup, you’ll want to make sure you upload your logo and your brand colors. After you’re doing this setup, all you have left to do is preview & test the form.
Once you think your form is good to go, click “Preview”, and view your form on desktop and on your mobile device. Make sure that all the questions & formatting looks good on both devices so that you don’t have 100’s of participants emailing you because something doesn’t work.
Step 10 – Activate your form, go live, and share your registration link
The final step, we’re just about at the finish line and so far, as advertised, everything has been SEAMLESS.
Now, click the “activate” button, copy the link, and share it via email or across your social media. Once activated, the registration form will also automatically publish to your website where participants can go to from the comfort of their own home, and register for the next season.
(Don’t worry if you activate the form and notice an error, you can click “deactivate” and remove the form from being published.)
Running a seamless registration is all about doing the small things perfectly. After having read through these ten steps, you’ll reduce the amount of time you spend answering questions while also saving the amount of administrative work you need to do post registration, such as assigning players to teams and tracking down payments.
Book a 30 minute walkthough with an account representative to get setup for your next season