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Bizzabo: Four in Five Virtual Events Were Free to Attend in 2020

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Virtual events unquestionably replaced in-person ones for most of 2020, and about 80 percent of them were offered to attendees for free, according to new research from event technology platform Bizzabo.

For its 2021 Virtual Events Benchmark Report, Bizzabo analyzed 1,850 events from the company’s platform that took place between July 1 and Oct. 30.

According to the report, about 50 percent of registrants attended the virtual events they signed up for, and 80 percent of organizers enabled on-demand access for at least one of their event’s sessions. 

Conferences and conventions were the most common type of event planned during the analysis period at 43 percent, followed by meetings and networking at 23 percent, and internal events at 13 percent. 

Fifty-eight percent of the virtual events were interactive—allowing attendees to “go on stage”—and these sessions tended to be smaller, with most capping attendees at about 300, according to the report. About 16 percent were larger streaming sessions and often included text-based activities such as live Q&A or polling. 

Single-day events dominated the average event length at 57 percent, followed by two-day events at 14 percent. The average number of sessions per virtual event was 20. The average number of sponsors of virtual events was 14.

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