Does Your Box Office Ticketing System Support What People Like?

As reported in a previous post, we recently surveyed 200 people and asked about a recent ticket buying experience. We asked several questions about how they felt about the event organizer’s box office ticketing system and the overall process for buying and receiving tickets. In analyzing the results, three questions were focused on were:

What did you like about your ticket buying experience?
What did you dislike about your ticket buying experience?
What suggestions do you have for improvements

About half of the respondents had recently purchased tickets online using the venue’s online ticket solution, and about half had made their purchase in-person. (A handful had placed phone orders, but not enough to analyze.)  This post outlines the likes of buying at the box office.
They Like Getting the Tickets!
Although the respondents answered in free text format, most of the answers fell into certain categories. The following chart shows the percentage of respondents who stated a like in each of the summarized categories:
What Customers Like about Buying at the Box Office

By far, the biggest advantage ticket buyers see in buying in-person at the box office is the fact that they get their tickets immediately. They like being able to pay for the tickets and receive the tickets right away. Despite the fact that we live in a modern computer-based and mobile smartphone world, people still like receiving the actual ticket, and will drive to the selling location to get it.

Some of the comments that displayed this:

You get the tickets.
I can get the ticket at that instant.
It was easy to just pay in cash and get the ticket.
You get the ticket in your hand.

They Like Easy, Secure and Certain
The second attribute that customers like is the ease. They found it easy to show up, talk to the seller, pay and walk away with their tickets. They did not have to worry about not knowing how to use a box office ticketing system themselves. By the way, in case you suspect this is because the respondents were mostly older, that was not the case. The majority of the respondents were under 35 years old.

Customers also liked the fact that they did not have to worry about the payment not going through, and, in fact, some appreciated being able to pay in cash.  They also liked being able to talk with the seller and get live advice. They found the process orderly and trustworthy. They also liked being able to interact with people – not just the box office staff, but other ticket buyers as they had something in common.

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Some representative comments from the other categories of things they liked:

I can rely on the person at the box office
The cashier was nice.
It was easy.
No conflicts in paying.
They gave me details about show, seats, and timings before buying ticket.
You can instantly start a conversation and find mutual interest with someone waiting beside you.

Implications
If you are looking for a new box office ticketing system, it is interesting to consider these. While an online ticketing system simply cannot replicate some of these (e.g. “the cashier was nice” or “Start a conversation with someone in line”), some attributes can be replicated (e.g. easy, reliable information).

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