Most people who’ve spent some time browsing the internet are familiar with the concept of cookies, or have at least heard of the technology. Cookies are a very common element in most websites today. They allow a lot of great things like shopping carts, saved passwords and tracking visitors to a site. But did you know they can also improve the registration process for your event? It’s not the goal of this article to explain the technical details of what cookies are and how they work; all you really need to understand is that cookies are small files than can be created by web pages. The files are stored on a user’s computer and can be accessed later by the website. Cookies are generally harmless, but like anything (software, cars, guns) when people use them inappropriately, they often get a bad name made for them. So what does all this mean to meeting planners? Online registration software packages have recently started to include the ability to track visitors throughout the entire registration process. This is accomplished through the use of harmless tracking cookies that are placed on a registrant’s computer. These cookies allow you to answer questions like: How many potential registrants viewed the form? Where did the registrants come from? How long did they take to fill out each part of the form? How many visitors actually became registrants? Where in the process do most of the visitors leave the form? As you can see, this is valuable information to know about your form. Online registration saves you time by automatically sending out confirmation emails to your registrants, processing payments online, running and emailing reports and much more, so that you can concentrate on improving and adding value to your event. This added information allows you to use the time saved using the software to improve your registration form. Reevaluate the spots where registrants get stuck, find new partners via referral stats, or provide incentives for your promoters to send you more registrants by running your own affiliate program. Clearly, the addition of cookie technology to online event registration software for the purpose of tracking visitor behavior is very valuable. Even if you’ve never used web tracking software before, it is very easy to get started and the potential rewards are very high for those willing to take advantage.