Navigating wedding etiquette is difficult enough as it is, but when you throw technology and social media...
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By Maria Yeonhee Ji
Coordinating a successful large-scale event like a wedding is made infinitely easier by having informed guests who are aware of the itinerary and logistical details. Which is why the wedding website is such a must-have for couples planning on tying the knot, especially if you have a lot of guests from out-of-town. However, as with traditional wedding invites, there are still some etiquette rules that shouldn’t be breached. So to help you design a website that conveys all the information your guests need with subtlety and grace, here are some dos and don’ts of wedding websites.
Image sourced from Bliss & Bone
The most important purpose for a wedding website is to provide information about your event. Beyond the basics of where and when (make sure to proofread these details carefully), there are a lot of other details that can be incredibly helpful for your guests. What is the dress code? What kind of footwear will be appropriate for your venue? Is it likely to be particularly hot or cold on the day?
Be considerate for the guests who are flying in from out-of-town, and provide some recommendations (and links) for local dining, accommodation, transportation, and other fun activities in the area. If you’ve gone the extra mile and negotiated special arrangements or discounts for your guests, make sure this is clearly stated on the website, with all the relevant links and contact information so that your guests can easily finalise their travel plans with the click of a few buttons.
Image sourced via Green Wedding Shoes
As digitally savvy as our society is becoming, there are risks of choosing just to have a wedding website RSVP. For the benefit of guests who aren’t as technologically competent as you, it’s also good practice to mail a traditional wedding invite. This way you can also keep an eye on your growing pile of RSVPs, and avoid getting them confused with responses from people who weren’t actually on the guest list (people assuming that they were invited is a known hazard that can occur when wedding website links are shared on social media).
Image sourced via Colorlib
Not all of your wedding attendees will know you, your partner, and your families intimately (think about the plus ones). To give everyone the chance to know you better, include some personal details and photos on the website such as stories about how you met, experiences you’ve shared, the proposal etc. It’s a considerate way of getting your guests feeling like they know you both better, and facilitates better mingling at the reception. Be mindful that if your site isn’t password-protected, any content you put up could be found by others (e.g. future employers) so refrain from divulging too much (you can always share the embarrassing or cheekier stories at the reception itself).
Image sourced from Joy
If you are planning any intimate, wedding-related events (e.g. the bachelorette party, bridal shower, rehearsal dinner etc.) with a more exclusive guest list of close friends and family, it’s best not to mention these on the website. To prevent miscommunication, keep all information related to the wedding itself (such as the itinerary) and any extra events where all guests are invited.
Image sourced from Riley & Grey
Mentioning your gift registry on the printed wedding invites is an exhibition of extremely poor etiquette. However, creating a wedding website gives you the perfect opportunity to inform your guests where you’re registered (and include links), so that you can make the most of all the advantages of having a wedding registry without seeming lacking in the social graces.
Image sourced from Nia Says
Your website can be a great tool for getting guests excited about the event to come, but it can also be a way of establishing some ground rules for the day. If you’re having an unplugged wedding, mentioning this clearly on your website can be a good way to get the social media addicts and inbox-zero fanatics mentally prepared to put their digital devices away for the ceremony. If you’re embracing the presence of phones, don’t forget to set the social media guidelines and inform guests if you’ve got a hashtag for your wedding so that searching for all the great memories of the day can be easily done.