First post in the Engagement/Wedding series from the schedule! Come back every Wednesday for more info. Wedding season creeps over the horizon (if not already here for those living in warmer locations). One of the first places people scour for info aside from your Save the Date or Invitation is your Wedding Website! In New England we’re still waiting for the remainder of the snow/ice to thaw now that’s officially “Spring”. There are plenty of PAID websites that offer services, but I’m just going to focus on the FREE choices since you’ll probably be spending a lot of money in other areas. I’ve linked the sample website demos for you to peruse. However if you want to see the layout options you can check out the main page. After digging into some more research for this post, I’m actually thinking I should have picked a different website… a little too late now!
If you are planning on having an engagement party or a celebration shortly after the exciting news, I advise starting on the website early on! Even though we shared the website link early on (Save the Dates, Invitation response card), it still required a considerable amount of goading for people to actually visit. Hate to break it to ya, but your big day won’t be as important to anyone else so visiting the website can fall to the wayside. You can also buy your own domain name so the URL is easier for your loved ones to remember. Ingrain it into their minds anyway you can.
1. WeddingWire – One of my go to resources for forum Q&A discussion! Love searching for my wedding dilemma issues. Someone else usually has a crazier story on here.
- No RSVP option online.
- So many free themes and you can choose whether you want the menu to go horizontally (stacked), vertically (paged).
- Photo album shows full screen photos.
- Guestbook & Contact form included!
2. eWedding – Easy layouts to navigate, not very many theme options! Everything is on the main page, so many unique features!
- Photos allow guests to “like” with a heart and leave comments.
- Share other forms of media video
- RSVP online option available.
- Fun polls to add on your website for guests to interact, timeline of your love story
- Guests can submit information such as song requests, collect their addresses!
- Blog feature, really nifty if you want to post what you are up to and events leading up to the wedding. (I love writing! This would have been great for announcing wedding website updates.)
3. SayIDo – streamlined interface of all your key info in one place! Cool flash features. Not too many people are using this so your website will be unique and you can have a simple and short URL!
- Minimalistic layout. Sleek design looks great on mobile interface.
- RSVP feature for guests.
4. Weduary – are all of your contacts on Facebook? This website integrates all of your contact info already on Facebook to allow you to send out invites.
- Obviously this is an issue if not all of your guests are on here, but for the very social media active this could be a very easy option!
- Privacy control integrated with Facebook so only those invited can see the wedding details.
5. TheKnot – most popular/default option I’ve seen used among friends, colleagues. There are a few annoying glitches, but overall it’s reliable!
- Variety of themes, some of them also have matching stationary available from Minted to order.
- Custom pages for you to share your love story and other fun tidbits & guestbook.
- Wedding Checklist & E-mail reminders
- Guest List Manager / Collect Addresses / Online RSVP
- Registry integration, donation to charity of choosing for guests who purchase through the link. (No specified % or amount though.)
- Photo albums feature drives me crazy since the size of the photos is so small.
- Privacy protection, you can set a PIN for guests to enter. Also your website will not be searchable if you’re paranoid like me.
Drum roll please… no surprise for my friends and family but I chose TheKnot! Don’t pick it just because it’s the default option though! Take a moment to look through all the features of the other free websites to decide which one would be best for you. You don’t need to to go with the mainstream choice like me. Hope you found the options useful. I hate it when the movie industry splits the last movie into 2 parts to get more revenue (when they could have made a slightly longer final movie), but expect the FREE Wedding Website TheKnot Part 2 for next week!