Quite simply put, if you look at today's extended families and our friends scattered all over the globe, weddings have become weekend to three day long events. The last three weddings I was invited to were all weekend events.
With informal drinks and snacks the Friday evening, formal ceremony and reception the Saturday and into the night and breakfast the Sunday morning.
Now keep in mind that I had to sleep somewhere and keep myself occupied on those Saturday mornings. In towns, I had never been to before. If my thoughtful hosts had not shared accommodation suggestions and recommended eateries on their wedding website I would have been a little lost.
It would be impossible to fit all the information you need to communicate to your guests on your invitations. Believe me you do not want to answer never ending phone calls from guests wanting to know were they can sleep. Even more important is that as your plans evolve in the run-up to the wedding day your website can be updated with ease thus keeping all your guests up to date.
Why a wedding website? To share locations.
This is probably the most important reason. A friend of mine had her wedding ceremony and reception in Phuket, talk about not knowing your way around. A wedding website allows you to share the location with directions to the various venues you are using. Where should your guests park, how long is the drive from the wedding ceremony to the pre-drinks venue, is there a parking spot for elderly or disabled guests? Your wedding website empowers you to make life easier for your guests ensuring that your special day goes as smoothly as you dreamed it would be. Your guests will think you are just so super organised!
Why a wedding website? To share accommodation.
Let your guests know where the best places are to stay and how much it will cost. Let them know what else there is to do in town. Perhaps you have an itinerary with different events they may want to book for, such as a relaxing massage or wine tasting — welcome mister online form, please to meet you.
Why a wedding website? To share the wedding schedule.
Sometimes you just have to be the Border Collie and tell people where and when they need to be someplace. What time is cocktails served, is there an after party and what about the morning after breakfast?
In these busy times, people try an fit as many activities as they can into a weekend, time is limited and you may find that some guests are unsure what time what happens. A programme or wedding schedule, allows people the freedom of knowing what is planned for when.
Why a wedding website? To share what to wear
Sorry to tell you but the words "dress code" does not mean much to people these days, yes I know it frustrates me too. With the wide variety of wedding venues available these days it may be wise to give your guests some tips on how to dress. Maybe your ceremony is in a garden and wedges instead of heels would be more comfortable. Or perhaps you have a theme and would like to request that everyone wear something of a particular colour or theme.
Why a wedding website? To share your photos.
Most photographers include an engagement shoot in their packages, share them. Mind you, only choose the most flattering ones though. You can even include a gallery of some fun pics from before he popped the question in "your love story" section.
Why a wedding website? To share your love story.
If you have extended family and a big group of friends living abroad, let them know how you met. This will make everyone feel part of your special day and your journey up to the wedding day. And don't think because you have Facebook they will know. Facebook's algorithm insures that only about 40% of your contacts actually receive your posts. Officially they say 60% but in reality that's not entirely true. This is also why using Facebook to inform your guests about what is going on is not the best method.
Why a wedding website? To introduce your wedding entourage.
Your guests may know you and your fiancé, but chances are that they know nothing about your bridesmaid/s or fiancé's best man. Call me old fashioned but I would like to know who the person is that invites me to the bachelor party. So in the very least give your guests a name with a photo and a short introduction paragraph. This is particularly handy if your maid-of-honour is arranging your bachelorettes or/and kitchen tea.
Why a wedding website? To share your gift registry.
Traditional etiquette dictates that you not place your registry information on your invitations. So the only place left is your ‘Save the Date’ or your website. You can add a direct link to your registry if it's an online shop like Yuppiechef, (who have some amazing stuff if I may say so) or @ Home. The wonderful option here is that even guests who live far away can shop on-line and have the gifts delivered to your maid of honour. On a more selfish note… at least you will receive gifts that you want! Rather than 10 glass salad bowls!
The final answer to the question as to why a wedding website? For the convenience of your family and friends you deemed worthy to invite to this very special day.