Your online calendar should enhance your community experience, not cause more headaches. From integration with social platforms to user experience basics, there are some things you shouldn’t do without if you’re looking for a new online calendar.
Whether you’re keeping your online calendar in-house or using an outside application read on for our suggestions on indispensable features to consider when choosing your online calendar.
1. Super intuitive use
Your calendar should be easy to use for both site visitors and admins. That means easy browsing and sharing for users, easy updating and administrative features for staff. You have a lot of events going on, so your calendar should be able to handle bulk uploads of information. If you skimp on user experience, you’ll be hit with big costs in the form of staff time and a lack of user adoption. For more on features that can make your online calendar user-friendly, check out our post focusing entirely on user experience.
2. Social features
People naturally want to be social, so why not use a calendar that embraces that idea? A good calendar will capitalize on social features by having the option to sort events by interest or theme, show who’s going to events, track trending events, allow users to submit events, and integrate with social media for easy sharing. These features and more will help your calendar feel less like a schedule and more like a community. Check out our eBook, “Why Your Online Calendar Should Be Social,” for a deep dive on this.
3. White-label branding
Your online calendar should match the rest of your online brand. For example, with Localist, you can use our calendar platform but make it your own, customizing the look and feel of the software with your organization’s colors, brands, logos, and more. Your calendar should appear consistent with the rest of your online presence for the best user experience.
4. Active development
While this isn’t exactly a feature, it’s a philosophy behind features. A good online calendar will have a team behind it that will keep it current with the evolving online world. That means your calendar will be integrated with relevant popular social media platforms as they arise. It also means that developers will constantly be thinking of how to add more features for your users to enjoy as they follow and share events.
5. Flexible integrations
We all use a ton of applications these days, and if your calendar has a robust API, it should be able to integrate with many of the applications you’re already invested in. For example, Localist connects with Facebook for sharing events, Eventbrite for selling tickets, OrgSync to promote communication on college campuses, and more. Connecting your calendar to existing systems will bring everything event-related in one place, a huge benefit for both site visitors and staff.
6. Mobile capabilities
Last but not least, your online calendar application should be good to go for visitors who are on the go. Compatibility with mobile phones and tablets is a crucial feature for users who want to check out events while away from their computers. Having your calendar in your pocket or backpack makes it much more likely for it to become an indispensable part of life, not just an easily forgotten bookmark on your browser. Localist addresses this right out of the box, but also includes more advanced features, like seeing events nearby, with our new mobile app, Tailgate.
Your online calendar should be a great asset to your community if it works the way it’s supposed to. By choosing, or building, an online calendar application with the right features, your calendar can go from a static image of the dates in the month to an essential part of how your community makes its plans.
Want to know more about what makes a modern online calendar? Check out our eBook, “Why Your Online Calendar Should Be Social.”