Seven years after the launch of the first iPhone, why is the industry still wrestling with the mobile experience?
It’s not a secret that the ticketing industry has been a bit slow on the uptake when it comes to embracing the mobile experience. A 2017 report by technical marketing agency Erudite even named Ticketmaster as a site whose slow loading times were reportedly as stressful as watching a horror movie.
Of course, this problem isn’t unique to large-scale sales platforms like Ticketmaster. Many box offices needlessly increase wait times. They force their customers to leave their site before they can check out, require account creation, and ask for huge amounts of information before the purchase is complete.
Why is this a problem?
Firstly, this means that ticketing fails to meet the expectations created by most other industries that rely on online sales. As Chris Crossley of Line-Up pointed out during his talk, the average number of clicks it takes to get from landing page to checkout in ticketing is 11 – but you can buy a single item on Amazon in as few as three.
This all contributes to how many customers stick around on your website to complete the transaction, and how many give up on the idea. On top of that, if they have to leave your website to complete their purchase, you’ll never even know how many you lost at the point of that change.
Then, there’s the collection of user data. We’re not talking about GDPR here – that’ll be covered in another post – but when the data is collected. If your customer has to tell you the date of the last time they cried before they can buy their ticket, they may well decide not to do so at all.
What makes a good user experience?
The “What Millennials Want” panel highlighted some key points that were later picked up in Jake Grimley’s talk about what’s expected when someone buys a ticket in 2018. He proposed that systems need to be easy to use, recognise their users, and handle user data in a way that customers deem trustworthy.
Jake talked the audience through how apps have changed the canvas we’re working from. Using Hotel Tonight as a case study, he pointed out that checkout flow for a booking can easily be streamlined by using smarter options, using a simple opt-in switch for upselling, and offering easy payment methods like PayPal or Apple Pay.
Should my venue get an app, then?
Er…probably not. Most people only download apps for something they use at least a couple of times a week. You’re much better off investing that effort into making sure you know how people are finding your events, and making it quick and easy for them to get from there to your checkout.
It doesn’t take building an app to make the purchasing process quicker. All it takes is a little thought about what you do and don’t need. Can you outsource the collection of payment data to a trusted agent like PayPal? Can you enable alternative ways of logging in and avoid account creation forms? Can you collect marketing data after the customer has paid?
What’s Monad doing about all this?
Glad you asked! Here are a few ways we help venues optimise their mobile experience:
• Responsive design
We started implementing responsive design to improve mobile transactions back in 2013. That means that the box office system itself works brilliantly on mobile, tablet and desktop. We design the look and feel of the ticket site around your existing branding, and we have plenty of advice on how to reduce clicks and speed things up.
Monad’s checkout flow is highly optimised to skip unnecessary stages. All the elements you do need are included, but it’s easy to remove them as soon as they stop being relevant. For an example of how we’ve implemented a three-step booking flow, have a look at https://lincoln.eticketme.com/sales.
We’re huge fans of integration, and there are a couple of ways this can be especially helpful to your customers on mobile:
- We support PayPal so that customers can pay with a single click, with no need to have their card with them or spend ages typing in their details.
- Your customers can log in with Facebook or Google, saving them time if they need to create an account.
- We’re working on adding direct carrier billing, which will allow your customers to add the price of the ticket to their phone bill instead of checking out with a card.
We don’t just offer these feature; we highly recommend them – particularly PayPal. Talk to us today about how we can make it easier for your customers to buy tickets from a mobile browser.