Box Office Ticketing Systems Online Ticketing Software FAQs - Introduction

Online box office ticketing systems top 10 most FAQs is a video series we put together that applies our experience with online box office ticketing to the top ten FAQs that you have been asking. It is our aim with this series to help you gain insight into the types of services and many features available, so that you can make an informed decision about what system best suits your needs.

Is the online box office system stable/ reliable?
What is the downtime percentage?
What is the online ticketing systems peak level capacity?
Is this a service model or an in house white label model?
How well does the online box office ticketing system integrate with third party systems?
May I change pricing and event configuration at any time on my own website?
How do I track data on all of the ticket sales?
What type of access control is offered?
How much does the ticketing system cost and how does that affect my ticket buyer?
Do I control my brand with this online ticketing system?
Does the online box office ticketing system come with marketing tools?
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Box Office Ticketing Systems Online Ticketing Software FAQs - Q1

Is the online box office system stable/ reliable?
What is the downtime percentage?
You're basing a big portion of your business' revenue on that online ticketing system and you need it to be reliable.

Online ticketing companies will show you all their features but you want to ask them if they've done benchmarking in terms of uptime and downtime, benchmarking in terms of load capacity and spike capacity.

You really want to get a sense that that system is rock-solid. As online ticketing systems have added more features and become more complex over the years, there was clearly a period where there was a trade off between features and functionality and system stability.

What you need is 99.99% reliability just like the phone system in terms of getting dial tone. You should demand the same stability from an online ticketing software. It needs to be up. It needs to be stable. It needs to be able to take the spikes and hits when you have really high demand while maintaining functionality. It needs to not go down when you need it.

You do not need to sacrifice features and functionality for efficiency, so this is one of the items that you really need to ask your online ticketing software provider.

We cannot speak for other products, but Ticket Sage is benchmark tested, and it is there for our customers with the 99.99% reliability you should expect.
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Box Office Ticketing Systems Online Ticketing Software FAQs-Q2

What is the online ticketing system’s peak level capacity?
This can mean either the spike capacity (as in the capacity to have thousands of multiple transactions happening simultaneously on a single event) or it can mean handling multiple ticket events happening at the same time.

Either way it is the system’s functionality that will allow it to handle high demand without failing. The system should be built to manage the load efficiently to prevent crashing.

This is done in many ways. The main idea is to regulate the stream of requests into a list of tasks. Think of a big funnel.

All systems need to do this. The real question is how well. And how are the users handled while their orders are being processed?

A smart system can give the user a well-conceived, reasonable wait time. It can show status bars. It can use a multi-step checkout processing data while the user fills out other information.

It is easy to be dazzled by a long feature list. However, be sure the system you choose has the most important feature of all... Stability under pressure.
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Box Office Ticketing Systems Online Ticketing Software FAQs - Q3

Is this a service model or an in-house white label model?
A service model is a complete ticketing system handled by the ticketing system provider. Your customers are sent through their website, processing, and customer service. Their branding.

The benefit of a service model is that you can let a third party handle everything for you. You direct your customers to their site to handle the tickets. Ticketmaster would be an example of a service model. The downside to this model is that you have a smaller role in your customer's experience.

With a white label model, your brand and website are responsible for your customer's experience. They do business with you. Now, this can mean more work. But as you will learn in the following videos, this also means you have a powerful opportunity to drive ticket sales and other forms of revenue.

TICKETsage is a silent partner, a white label model. Your brand is what your customers see. And really, that's all they want to see.
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Box Office Ticketing Systems Online Ticketing Software FAQs - Q4

How well does the online box office ticketing system integrate with third party systems?
Businesses can be very creative by integrating many promotions and collaborations. The event may bring the customers and the ticket might be the first point of contact, but that first contact may be driving many other relationships as well as other possible revenue streams.

It is important to have flexibility in your system if you want to take advantage of these opportunities. Maybe you have other businesses also selling your tickets or giving them away along with purchases.

Maybe you want each business to have their own promotion code that could either discount a ticket if they shop at a store or offer discounts at a store if they buy a ticket. Maybe your event has sponsors or your event is sponsoring a charity.

The possibilities are endless, so have the power to be creative. With TICKETsage, you can do some very sophisticated things such as running multiple promotions with different price points through different partners for a single event. We have many clients for which the ticket sale, the core interaction with their customer, is actually the smallest portion of their revenue.

With TICKETsage this flexibility is at the heart of our system's core functionality.
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Box Office Ticketing Systems Online Ticketing Software FAQs - Q5

May I change pricing and event configuration at any time on my own website?
This is the ability for you to be able to change your event, your inventory and your price points anytime, anywhere you want or you deem fit, during your sales cycle. It's about the real-time control you have over your business decisions.

Say you have an event; a rock concert. It's doing well ... really well. So, you've decided that you want to increase both the amount and the price of top price tickets that you have. If you had to take the event off line to do that, all of your customers will be bouncing off the system during the down time.

So is there another way? Some systems have the ability to make changes “in-stream”. This means that you can edit any part of the inventory, pricing, event times or locations without disrupting the sales currently taking place.

You may be surprised by how many systems do not allow this. Some won't even let you choose your own pricing in the first place. A new trend in sports events is to analyze the real-time incoming sales data and make adjustments to the ticket pricing and inventory as the market dictates.

The ticketing system you choose should support this real-time pricing strategy that is just beginning to trend in all ticket events from theatre productions to major music tours. TICKETsage not only supports this trend but we embrace it!

We provide you with a variety of analytical tools for your website so that you can make the best and most informed decisions to maximize your revenue.
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Box Office Ticketing Systems Online Ticketing Software FAQs - Q6

How do I track data on all of the ticket sales?
This is an important concern as we all know by now that data is “king” in the 21 century. Despite this knowledge, not all online box office ticketing systems provide this information. Soon gone are the days of trying to speculate markets and then committing your pricing structures, only to find that you way overestimated or underestimated demand.

Now companies are able to track data and respond appropriately. Maybe you are selling too quickly and you realize you could charge more. Or perhaps you charged too much and seats are going to be empty if you don't make changes fast. There is also more to it than this. Many opportunities exist for you to know and interact with your customers.

Tracking the way people interact with your site can offer an invaluable opportunity to make important changes. You can fix problems or maximize something that is already working.

One thing to look at is the checkout process. Shopping cart abandonment data is critical. Perhaps there are some unnecessary hurdles that need to be looked at, or maybe there could be better upfront pricing information. Having the capability of looking at promotion data will allow you to focus on promotions that work.

By knowing what event your customer bought a ticket for, and/or if they attended or gave the ticket to someone else can give you the ability to touch them in a personalized way. Say a customer attended a concert. You could send them an email with a copy of the set list or a link to the artist's merchandise with a promo code for a discount.

This can even be automated. From looking at the data provided by TICKETsage, our clients observed that post-event communication added up to 12% additional revenue per event.
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Box Office Ticketing Systems Online Ticketing Software FAQs - Q7

What type of access control is offered?
Access control is becoming much more sophisticated. By collecting data as people enter the event, access control can answer many questions that will become the foundation to your future strategy.

Questions like: What is my flow rate? When do people show up? Can be critically important on the operational side of your business. Also, questions like: What type of scanning is the system implementing? Is there one at all? If so, is it a 2-D barcode, 3-D bar code or a regular barcode? Similarly, consider the type of connectivity your system will need.

Will the system in question work for you? What if you are renting a venue without Wi-Fi? What if you want to put on a festival in the middle of nowhere?

Does the system let you use 3g or 4g networks? TICKETsage has accounted for these questions and has a solution for just about anything you could think of. Challenge us!
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Box Office Ticketing Systems Online Ticketing Software FAQs - Q8

How much does the ticketing system cost and how does that affect my ticket buyer?
This question is based in the two models we have discussed in question 3: the service model and the white label model. In both models there are fees. In few cases, it is monthly, though it is usually per ticket. Sometimes it is a flat rate per ticket and sometimes a percentage of the ticket price is how it is structured.

Depending on which model you go with, what’s important is how those fees differ in terms of how they are presented to the client. In a service model the fees are generally much higher because they have more leverage in the transaction.

The real factor to look out for though, is that with the service model, you have no control over how and when those fees are revealed to your customers. As we've experienced and as it is shown by looking at the abandoned cart data, we like to know how much we have to spend, well before the last page of the checkout process.

With the white label model you control your pricing. Who are your clients and what works best for them? One example of how to accomplish this is that you could wrap it into your ticket price and declare "all fees included".

TICKETsage believes that the checkout process is a great opportunity to engage with your customers.

Remember, they are still your customers after they buy the ticket so this is your chance to work on that relationship.

Give them: OFFERS RECOMMENDATIONS GIFTS
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Box Office Ticketing Systems Online Ticketing Software FAQs - Q9

Do I control my brand with this online ticketing system?
If you have a service model like we covered in question 3, you probably won't have a lot of control over how the checkout looks or is handled. Some might let you put up a banner or even a background, usually under a set of guidelines.

Most service models grow their brand and network so that you almost need them for their built-in customers. They may claim to provide customers but they won't usually give you access to them, or help you to promote your brand to them.

If you have a white label system, it is through your own website so you have the power to do or say whatever you want. You can be creative and express your brand identity however you feel it is appropriate for your customers.

TICKETsage is a silent partner. We are not the brand, you are. We aim to give you as much access and points of contact to your customers as possible. We provide you with the tools to promote your business and talent.
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Box Office Ticketing Systems Online Ticketing Software FAQs - Q10

Does the online box office ticketing system come with marketing tools?
If you decide to go with a white label model then you probably have decided to take responsibility for how you reach your customers and how you are structuring your pricing. To make the best decisions you will want as much data as possible and to carry out those decisions, and you will want a good set of tools.

Some of the data you might want are things like: How many visits to your website? How did they interact with your website? How many started a transaction? What percentage resulted in shopping cart abandonment?

You would want the system to include tools for: Consolidating and analyzing your data. E-mail marketing Executing Promotional Campaigns It cannot be stressed enough: Once you sufficiently gather data and can implement the strategies that you now know are working through a good set of tools, your business will have countless opportunities to maximize the way you are reaching your customers.

For example, you know from looking at your access control data that Jon bought a ticket to a rock band and went to the show. Using your email marketing tools, an email goes to Jon thanking him and hoping that he enjoyed the show.

You include the set list and a link to some photos that were taken. You also offer him a list of upcoming bands that he might like based on the show he just saw and include a promotional code for a discount.

Through implementing small changes and looking at the result, you can fine tune this interaction until the post-ticket sales become a significant part of your overall sales.

TICKETsage knows that this is not only the future of business but that it is happening right now. That is exactly why we have centered our services around this way of thinking.
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