When shopping for a new ticketing platform, keep in mind these 10 questions to make sure you get a system that works for your unique needs.
1. Who controls what with my ticketing?
You need to know beforehand what your ticketing provider is responsible for. Do they own your data? Will they contact your patrons on your behalf? Who manages your brand? Figure out what’s best for your venue.
2. Am I a good candidate for “In-house” ticketing?
Ask yourself these questions before you decide to run ticketing in-house: Do I have a dedicated staff person to configure my ticketing system? Do I have an accounting person who is ready to do daily reconciliations with bank deposits? Do I want to manage fraudulent purchases, chargebacks, and ticket resales?
If your answer to any of these is no, in-house ticketing may not be the right solution for your event or venue.
3. What kind of event management will I have?
Every ticketing company provides a different level of event management. Find out if you can make changes to events once they’re on sale, and if there are extra fees to create seat maps and other features.
4. Can I run the types of offers I need?
Whether you have in-house or promoter events, you need to know if your ticketing provider can handle the types of offers you want. Can they run multiple offers at the same time? Can you have automated pre-sales, or will they require manual adjustment? Will you have easy access to track the use of promo codes and see where the sale originated?
5. What does the quick sale in the box office look like?
This can be crucial in selling high-volume venues. How many clicks are required to complete the sale? Is the quick sale process PCI compliant? Is the box office system compatible with chip cards, Apple pay, or tap to pay?
6. What does the online buying experience look like?
Think about the ticket sale from the patron’s point of view. Can patrons choose their own seats, or can they only use “quick pick” seats? Is one of these options better for filling your seats? Is the system easy to buy from - including applying offer codes and discounts? The process your patron goes through is important to consider.
7. How is the ticketing company going to help me sell more tickets?
This is a more important question than you may think. Everything your ticketing provider does can have a potential effect on your ticket sales, including their fee structure, seat selection capabilities, and what types of packages and bundles they’re able to offer your patrons.
8. Is the new company a software provider or a ticketing company?
You should know whether your provider has experience selling tickets, operating their own box office, building and reconciling events, and providing onsite services. Knowledge and know-how in these services makes for better ticketing providers. If they program the ticketing system from a developer side only, they may not have the hands-on experience to give you the level of support you need.
9. Do I need a CRM component?
If the answer is yes, who is going to manage it? Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software is often complex and requires a knowledgable staff member to manage it. Who will configure the CRM and make changes? How many people will utilize the CRM versus the ticketing system? Does the ticketing system offer their own patron management that you can use instead?
10. Is the ticketing system mobile-friendly?
You may have poured money into a mobile-friendly site, only to have your ticketing point-of-sale organized best for desktop. Find out if the online ticketing site is mobile-friendly on every device (through the completion of the sale), and if you can easily access reports from your own mobile device.
Are there any other questions you consider when shopping for a new ticketing platform?