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Tech Thursday: Revolutionizing Event Planning with Floor Plan Apps

Are you tired of juggling all the tasks involved in event planning? Do you wish there was a way to streamline the process and save time? Look no further! Event floor plan apps are here...

Are you tired of juggling all the tasks involved in event planning? Do you wish there was a way to streamline the process and save time? Look no further! Event floor plan apps are here to revolutionize the way you design and organize your events. These apps are accessible on desktops, laptops, and mobile devices, making it easier than ever to create outstanding event layouts. Not only do they simplify floor plan design, but they also serve as a powerful tool for pitching services to potential clients. Let's dive into the top floor plan apps and discover their standout features and who benefits the most from each app.

1. Social Tables

Social Tables website Social Tables website

Social Tables offers exceptional free collaborative event planning software with diagramming and seating tools, photo-realistic 3D virtual walkthroughs, and state-of-the-art design. It's highly customizable, allowing you to create distinctive designs for your go-to spaces and venues you're using for the first time. The intuitive design and ease of use make it a favorite among event planners.


  • Intuitive design and ease of use
  • Streamlined, fully integrated attendee management
  • World's largest library of to-scale floor plan templates
  • Real-time updates keep multiple users on the same page


  • Updates often require user education
  • Design element library could be expanded
  • Photo-realistic 3D can be difficult to navigate

Tool Integrations: Salesforce, Eventbrite, Event Booking, Certain, CaterEase, Event Management Systems, Reserve Interactive, hSP, Ungerboeck Software, Triple Seat.

Best for: Corporate event planners, event firms and venues of every size, wedding planners.

Cost: Free

Bottom line: Social Tables' floor plan app helps you create floor plans in minutes for sales, event visualization, and client updates. The user-friendly interface and collaboration tools keep your team on track and improve the planning and day-of experience for guests and clients.

Learn more about Social Tables.

2. SmartDraw

SmartDraw Smart Draw's website

SmartDraw is a diagramming tool that facilitates visual communications in business, including event design. With its extensive collection of templates and symbol database, you can quickly modify floor plans to meet your criteria. It's a cost-effective option, perfect for smaller-scale event planning.


  • Cost-effective
  • User-friendly
  • Extensive floor plan templates
  • Extensive table, furniture, and symbol library


  • No check-in integration
  • Not solely event targeted
  • Out-of-date design
  • Customer service can be improved

Tool Integrations: Microsoft Office, G Suite, Atlassian, Dropbox, Google Drive, Box, OneDrive, Visio.

Best for: Smaller-scale event planning, from corporate meetings to weddings.

Cost: $9.99/month

Bottom line: SmartDraw's intuitive design allows even tech newbies to create clear, shareable event floor plans. However, customer service may not meet all your needs.

Learn more about SmartDraw.

3. Vivien

Vivien Vivien's website

Vivien is a highly detailed event design CAD software that creates 2D and 3D renderings with photo-realistic elements and lighting design. It's an excellent choice for venues and management groups that design large-scale events with theatrical elements.


  • Extensive customization tools
  • Detailed 3D elements library
  • Digital mannequins or virtual attendees dressed for the occasion


  • Expensive for small-scale operations
  • Steep learning curve for some
  • Limited adoption

Tool Integrations: MS Excel, AutoCAD DXF, DWG CAD, AutoDesk FBX, Collada DAE, 3D Studio, Wavefront OBJ, AutoDesk FBX, SketchUP SKP.

Best for: Any event with complex A/V and theatrical elements.

Cost: Buy Vivien for download on PC or Mac for $1,994, or lease the program starting from $349 for 3 months.

Bottom line: Vivien is a fantastic option for tech-savvy event planners who want customizable and atmospheric floor plans. While adoption may be low, the floor plans are a great sales tool for large venues and enterprise-level event planners.

Learn more about Vivien.

4. Planning Pod

Planning Pod software Planning Pod's website

Planning Pod's floor plan software offers a comprehensive tool for event floor plans and seating arrangements. Whether you need it as a stand-alone app or as part of their venue management and event management suites, Planning Pod has you covered. With the ability to handle up to 100 events simultaneously and 200 floor plans for each event, it's perfect for corporate events, meetings, conferences, and more.


  • Cost-effective
  • Extensive library of venue spaces
  • Confirmed guest and meal choice tracking
  • Stand-alone floor plan maker


  • Not suitable for wedding planners
  • Difficult to navigate floor plan tool
  • Insufficient customer support
  • Occasional crashes

Tool Integrations: Google, Quickbooks, Xero, Salesforce, MailChimp, and more.

Best for: Corporate events, event management firms, meetings and conferences, university event planning, non-profits, and charities.

Cost: Plans start at $49/month for the stand-alone floor plan app.

Bottom line: Planning Pod's floor plan app provides services beyond just floor plan design and seating arrangements. It offers RSVP tracking and a check-in tool, making it a comprehensive solution for event planning.

Learn more about Planning Pod.

5. AllSeated

AllSeated's website AllSeated's website

AllSeated offers detailed virtual reality walkthroughs of event spaces designed through their floor plan app. This app keeps venues, event planners, vendors, and organizers in the loop throughout the design process. With its drag-and-drop tools and extensive template library, you can design floor plans within minutes.


  • Photo-realistic virtual renderings
  • CAD tools
  • Room and venue templates
  • Unlimited furniture renderings on request


  • Steep learning curve for less tech-savvy planners
  • No stand-alone floor plan app
  • Upcharges for premium features
  • Limited to one user working on an event at a time

Tool Integrations: CaterEase, Cort.

Best for: Corporate event planners, event firms and venues of every size, wedding planners.

Cost: Subscription plan. Details not provided on the website.

Bottom line: AllSeated's floor plan app offers drag-and-drop tools and an extensive venue/template library, making it easy to design floor plans within minutes. The 3D viewing option helps clients visualize events, although there may be additional fees for premium features.

Learn more about AllSeated.

What makes an event floor plan app stand out?

When choosing an event floor plan app, consider these key factors:

1. Essential features

Look for features that make sense for your business or department, such as effortless collaboration, real-time changes, quick-start event space and element libraries, mobile device compatibility, intuitive user experience, and smart integrations.

2. Reviews

Read online reviews from people in similar industries to get insights into the apps' strengths and weaknesses. Pay attention to reviews from those with similar event planning needs to ensure a good fit.

3. Ask your network

Reach out to your professional network for recommendations and opinions on various event floor plan apps. Discuss with trusted peers, mentors, or even seek opinions on LinkedIn to gather valuable insights.

Once you've done your research, it's time to choose the perfect event floor plan app. Embrace this technology, and soon you'll wonder how you ever planned events without it!

The Event Planners Guide to Modern Meeting Design

Quick answers about the top floor plan apps:

  • Social Tables:

    • Pros: Intuitive design, extensive library of templates, real-time updates
    • Cons: User education required for updates, limited design element library
    • Best for: Corporate event planners, event firms, wedding planners
    • Cost: Free
  • SmartDraw:

    • Pros: Cost-effective, user-friendly, extensive templates
    • Cons: No check-in integration, not solely event targeted
    • Best for: Smaller-scale event planning
    • Cost: $9.99/month
  • Vivien:

    • Pros: Extensive customization tools, detailed 3D elements library
    • Cons: Expensive for small-scale operations, steep learning curve
    • Best for: Events with complex A/V and theatrical elements
    • Cost: Starting from $349 for 3 months
  • Planning Pod:

    • Pros: Cost-effective, extensive library of venue spaces
    • Cons: Not suitable for wedding planners, difficult navigation
    • Best for: Corporate events, event management firms
    • Cost: Starting from $49/month
  • AllSeated:

    • Pros: Photo-realistic renderings, CAD tools, extensive templates
    • Cons: Steep learning curve, no stand-alone app
    • Best for: Corporate event planners, wedding planners
    • Cost: Subscription plan (details not provided)