Isn’t it boring and expensive to create printed wedding invitations and distribute it to everybody?
With WordPress now to the rescue, you can now actually create a website to showcase your upcoming wedding and also directly send personalized invites through it !
WordPress offers a great functionality called WordPress Multi User (WPMU) where a business can actually go ahead and create a single system that will allow multiple engaged couples to go ahead and quickly create his own personalized website and allow them to invite their friends, relatives and acquaintances to the wedding.
Essentially, the core functionalities that would need to be there here are :
1. As the name suggests, A WordPress Multi User (WPMU) user can have multiple WordPress sites all integrated in his network. Each couple can have their own individual websites where they can update their biographies,engagement photos, wedding venue, information about reception etc.
2. Allow couples to send emails to their relatives, friends, colleagues etc thus keeping them updated.
Setting Up WPMU
First things first! Before you get to hosting a wedding site, you’ll need to-
*First set up WordPress multisite. – WPMU Dev has a great video tutorial here to help you out in Setting up WPMU
*You’ll also need to sign up with MailChimp for delivering bulk personalised emails. Once you set up the WPMU account, you’ll get access to the Network Admin dashboard by default.
Please note that if you make any changes to the Network Admin it will reflect in all the subdomains.
However it is up to the admin of each subdomain to either activate the changes or simply ignore them.
*Since you will be the network admin, you can add as many subdomains as required. These subdomains would be websites where the couples will host their wedding details.
*Once you create a subdomain, you can give access for the couples(who want to host their weddings on the site) in any of the following two ways-
1. You can provide credentials( username, password) of the subdomain to the couples
2. In your Network Admin dashboard,
The Network Admin will have to do the following:
Go to settings –> Registration Settings –> Allow New Registrations –> and enable “User accounts may be registered.
The additional custom WordPress plugin that would be then needed here would consist of the following features:
1. Once the couples register for their domains, they can easily create their own website hosting all details of their marriage. This would function in the same way as any normal WordPress site. Couples can add posts giving details of their weddings, they can upload their engagement photos etc. Now in order to let their friends, family, colleagues know about their wedding details they can send invites to all their contacts.
2. Secondly, wedding being a special event, requires special design for any website dedicated to it. Thus templates are extremely important and the network admin will provide a list of templates for each site.
3. After selecting a template, the couples may want to add a message to send to all of their contacts. The message would be stored in the database specific to each domain and the network domain. After adding a message, the user will go ahead to choose the contacts he wants to send the message to.
We can create a page that will display the following tabs(Screenshots are taken from a Similar Website called MyRegistry.com):
1. Choose a Design.
2. Add a Message.
3. Select Recipients.
How to do that?
1. To send message to all contacts from your respective Gmail, Yahoo Mail, Bing, AOL and Outlook accounts, we will need to use the OAuth method. To have OAuth Authentication in your WPMU you need to have access to the API keys it provides. For this you’ll have to create any app(google app, yahoo app etc) which will generate access keys for you. Keep a note of those access keys.
Implementing Oauth Authentication:
- We will need to create a settings page in the Network Admin domain and save the access keys there. This will enable OAuth authentication for the user site.
- The user can choose recipients only after he logs into his (gmail,ymail,aol,bing,outlook) account.
- We can add icons of Gmail, Yahoo, AOL, Bing and Outlook.
- Once clicked on any of the icons, the steps that follow for user authentication will be through OAuth.
- After all contacts are fetched, you can store them in a text area and display it to the users. The emails will be separated by commas.
- The recipient list can contain combined entry of both manual and imported emails.
- They can either enter directory of email addresses or individual addresses. so our plugin that will sync will all of the couples (gmail, yahoo mail, bing, aol, outlook) contacts and get ids of the invitees.
- Once the contacts are imported, the couple can send these contacts to your MailChimp account, from where the mail will be delivered to all the contacts.On clicking on the send button on the above page(screenshot), the list of email ids of recipients will be sent to the admins MailChimp account.
Please Note– You’ll have to implement OAuth for all the 5 mail providers in the similar way.
Integrating with MailChimp:
- Only the Network Admin needs to register with MailChimp. Once the Network Admin registers, he gets access to the MailChimp APIs.
- The Network Admin will then have to configure mailchimp account’s API credentials in the settings page of Network Admin along with the OAuth API details.
- So once all the email ids of people are imported by the subdomain owners, these emails are forwarded to the respective recipients.
- The Network Admin then receives a list of email ids along with, templates and their contents in your mailchimp account from which the emails will be sent to the recipients with specific templates and data.
2. Choosing a Design/Template:
MailChimp has a template system that allows users to select template of their choice before adding their message.
You can integrate this template facility within the websites too(See screenshot) by using the MailChimp APIs.
The MailChimp template methods can be invoked here:
3. Adding a Message:
Users can add whatever message they want.
In a similar way, this same system can also be used for a host of different events like, hosting a gala dinner, or organizing a business conference or any other family or business event. It’s just that the templates would be changed and everything else would remain the same.
Feel free to Contact Us and share you ideas and thoughts of using such a WordPress system.