8 reasons why ticket options are critical to successful online event ticketing

Why optioning up tickets is better than having a large number of ticket types

We’ve all seen events that have 10 or 20 different ticket types to allow the organiser to get all of their combinations of activities into a something that can be selected and purchased by a visitor.

This causes option paralysis for visitors. Staring at a wall of different tickets that are available at varying prices. It makes it virtually impossible for them to understand the differences between what’s on offer and inevitably results in either a confused phone call to the organiser, or worse, abandoning the ticket purchase process completely as “it’s just too hard!”.

We’ve experienced this first hand with organisers with whom consulted we consulted, and helped them reduce some 37 different ticket types (yikes!) down to 9, dramatically improving the ability of visitors to quickly and easily make a ticket choice that was relevant to them, and complete the purchase.

When we analysed what gave rise to this myriad of tickets across different types of events including conferences, consumer exhibitions and trade shows, the issue almost always boiled down to the number of activities and options that were available to the visitor, for example:

  • conference session or stream selections
  • gala dinners
  • packages which included some session selections but not others
  • theater sessions, some of which were paid, others that were free

In the past this has been a bane for large organisers but was usually addressed by working with conference registration providers that build custom checkout processes to accommodate the complex array of options required. But this came at a significant cost and was not an option readily available to small or mid size organisers who’ve relied primarily on SaaS ticketing providers to handle their event ticketing.

At O-tix, we set out to solve this problem and deliver organisers a solution that addressed almost any combination nor complexity of event while keeping the number of ticket types to an absolute minimum thus increasing ticket purchase conversion and still accommodating the myriad of session selections and options available at the event.

We’ve put together 8 key reasons why you should use ticket options for your next event instead of large number of ticket types:

  1. Reduce the number of ticket types you offer
    Having a large number of ticket types makes it confusing for customers to purchase tickets. A simpler approach is to have just a few ticket types, but then allow customers to choose add-ons, upgrades, sessions or other activities after they select their ticket. Ticket Options allow you to do this effectively.
  2. Up-sell visitors with paid options
    With events growing in complexity and offering more visitor engagement on-site, there are more opportunities to up-sell visitors once they make their ticket selection. Up-sell can include paid on-site activities such as classes, theatre sessions, special guest interactions, autograph sessions, one-on-one sessions etc.
  3. Sell merchandise or packages
    Merchandise can be easily sold by creating “Standard Ticket Options” with inventory quantites. You can also create Packages such as Show Bags with merchandise add-ons. Once on-site you can simply scan the visitor ticket and see what options they’ve selected.
  4. Manage limited seat sessions or exclusive sessions
    In some cases, event organisers or sponsors may wish to qualify attendees before approving their access to a session. O-tix provides the ability for organisers to set “Requires approval” on any ticket option. In this case, attendees request to attend the specific session and organisers can review their responses to registration or ticket option questions before approving or rejecting their booking request. O-tix’s comprehensive booking management functionality also allows for making changes to booking requests.
  5. Allow attendees to select the sessions they wish to attend
    For many conferences or trade shows, it is a requirement that attendees pre-select the sessions that they wish to attend, after purchasing their ticket. O-tix’s ticket options facilitates this by allowing organisers to create their entire event schedule within O-tix — complete with Streams, Speakers, Session Types and Locations. All of the Session Selections are printed on the visitor’s ticket. Organisers can also manage the selections and monitor seat reservations.
  6. Sell different price tickets for the same sessions
    For organisers who run theatre events there may be a need to sell different priced tickets or offer discounted tickets to students, health-card holders or specific visitor types. However regardless of the ticket purchased, the quantity of available seats remain the same. O-tix offers organisers the ability to create Sessions and Durations with fixed “slots” or “seats” these options can then be assigned to multiple ticket types allowing organisers to sell different classes of tickets for the same sessions.
  7. Create mandatory selections
    In the case of events where organisers sell “Package” tickets — the visitors may be required to make Mandatory selections from a choice of sessions or options. O-tix’s ticket options enables this through the Ticket Options Rules feature. You can set minimum and maximum options per Option Category or across all options. You can also create ticket options that are free and assign them to the same Session. This allows organisers to sell VIP packages which may include access to one or more sessions which the visitor can select, at no additional cost.
  8. Select Free or Paid options (such as between having a merchandise item posted or for pick-up)
    Recently O-tix supported the RSPCA South Australia in their Santa Paws event. This event had a requirement to have visitors select whether they wanted their photographs posted to their address or picked up at their store. This is a great use of ticket options together with option rules to force the visitor to make a selection before purchasing tickets.

To learn more about how you can use Ticket Options to run your event more effectively, create your event on O-tix and ask to speak to one of our customer success personnel. We’ll help you configure and setup your event perfectly to suit your needs.