View Full Version : Online Ticketing... Need your opinions
08-25-2009, 12:57 PM
Online ticketing... are any of you charging extra to buy the tickets online? For example the ticketing company is charging you a buck lets say are you turning around and changing the customers are fee like $2.00 like a concert promoter would? Wondering what everyone is doing in that area. If you did did anyone complain or refuse to buy tickets?
08-25-2009, 01:48 PM
Working with many clients at my day job setting up systems. So far 7 out of 10 clients charge less for online ticket sales to drive the advance tickets.
Many charge like a $1.00-$2.00 less online so then they have a steady count of people that are committed to the event. It drives both the traffic to their site, and for the sales. And in most of the marketing we make it a point to mention the discounted for online sales.
Just my brainy thoughts.
Howie Slobber Erlich
08-25-2009, 01:50 PM
We use Etix. They charge the customer a service fee. It costs us nothing to use the service. I do not raise the ticket price. Why would you charge them any more than what you are charged? Don't you make enough from your haunts already without raping your customers for another dollar or two? Enough is never enough I guess. It's things like this that prove so many haunters only care about how much they can make from the industry. Is there anybody out there that cares more about the customers than the all mighty dollar?
Howie "Slobber" Erlich
Deadly Intentions Haunted Attraction
08-25-2009, 03:58 PM
I'm going be following this thread. I looked at doing online ticket sales this year, but I desided not to yet. I dont want to pass the extra charges over to the coustomer. I am thinking next year I may be able to start doing it when our haunt gets bigger and I can hide the cost in the ticket sales.
08-25-2009, 04:21 PM
We do not raise prices for tickets online. We do have a cheaper price for advance ticket purchases.
08-26-2009, 12:27 AM
With us we have LONG LINES to buy tickets on weekends... so if you buy online you SAVE TONS OF TIME! So we are thinking of adding a fee to online tickets like $1.00 or $2.00 per ticket purchased on line.
Bad idea or good idea?
08-26-2009, 12:42 AM
Bad Idea Larry. From past client experience since you have long lines encourage the online sales and to do that would be to have them $1.00 less online.
Just my ramblings. Have a good haunt season.
And just an added note, I buy everything online now most of the time because I know I save money that way.
08-26-2009, 02:27 AM
I also can not see the justification of raising prices of your on line ticket.
However an on line ticket purchase is an added convenience to your customer.
They do not stand in line, have to bring cash or do a credit transaction at the window, etc. So in that case I can not justify “eating” the on line fee. Any other ticketing service you may pay $40.00 for the ticket but then you also pay the “convenience fee” associated with it. Why should we be any different? If $2.00 is pretty much a standard fee and you negotiate a lower price why haggle over a couple cents?
Slobber… you need to take a chill pill!! Most Haunters do not put the audience over the “all mighty dollar.” I for one take offense to that! Every year my expenses increase, yet I haven’t raised the ticket price in years. I could be like other operators and not even bother to repair much less change my attraction, but I continue to upgrade and modify my attraction year after year spending more of that all mighty dollar.
Think of it this way..... If you DON’T make the all mighty dollar, you become one of the “all mighty out of business.” No pay, no play!!!
Howie Slobber Erlich
08-26-2009, 07:44 AM
I am in the same boat as you. I upgrade my show every year, completely redesigning ever room. I give my customers the best show I can produce on a budget I can afford.
I am in the most competitive market in the country for haunts (Detroit Metro Area). Some haunts here are charging upwards of $30.00 to get into their show. Most of them are not worth half that price. I am one of the least expensive at $14.00. I increased my price last year just to try to stay competitive. Three years ago I actually lowered my ticket price for the year just to give my customers a bit of a break in these hard times.
If more haunts cared a bit more about giving their customers a better show instead of just about how much more money they can make, our industry would have a much better reputation. I for one am sick of the haunt down the street who could not care less about his customers ripping people off year after year. Throwing his haunt up in a couple weeks without any care as to the quality or safety of his haunt. While I put my heart and soul into my show, putting 11 months of blood and sweat into giving my customers a show like no other.
My main point was if you are already charging customers extra to cover your costs of fees from your online ticket company. Why is it necessary to charge additional money on top of that. Only to make a few extra bucks! In this case, if your show is that good, why not just increase your ticket price across the board?
08-26-2009, 08:06 AM
I guess it all depends on your goal. If you're trying to get as many people as possible to buy online to save yourself from dealing with long ticket lines at the haunt, then make it a discount online to encourage them to buy online. But if you're trying to either increase revenue or just give customers another option to buy tickets, you can certainly make a case for having them cover the cost of it or even pay more as they do get to skip part of the line.
08-26-2009, 12:53 PM
Larry I would suggest you increase the ticket price to a dollar more at the most and make sure to advertise that they won't have to wait in the ticket line. I think the extra fee is worth not having to wait in the ticket line considering that it can be rather large at times. And if people see that they aren't going to have to wait in the ticket line they may more likely buy a ticket online verses paying for a ticket at the window. Make sure to show a picture of your long lines when advertising the additional fee for online tickets.
08-26-2009, 08:09 PM
I don't believe it would be nessecary for you to raise the prices. HOWEVER, if you were to go with a better company who will allow you to EASILY print your sales invoices in duplicate to make it easier on your ticket sellers...I would completely agree to a charge. With an upgrade like that it would save time and money. It would keep your customers happy and not waiting for the ticket sellers to go through...what they go through...to figure it out, if something is wrong or is in the wrong place.
Short of that awesome upgrade I just explained...I don't see any reason to change what you have. As someone said before, it's a convenience, I wouldn't take that away from your customers. Those people are going to be in a line, and most likely a long one, no matter what they buy, unless they spring for speed pass.
As always, you'll decide what you think is best. Good luck with your choice.
08-26-2009, 09:05 PM
Larry, I think you could offer a VIP ticket for online ticket sales and recoup the cost of the online fee in that. It gives them an incentive to buy online and allows you to make your fee back PLUS. A VIP pass costs YOU nothing yet it is a value to your customers. Just a thought.
08-27-2009, 08:52 AM
I add an additional charge to all online sales in addition to what the ticketing company charges. To offset the additional cost in credit card processing and the additional staff hired to help validate all vouchers.
08-27-2009, 09:08 AM
We use CliknPrint tickets and we share the cost with the customer with a $1.00 convenience fee going to the ticket purchaser; however, we distribute coupons for $1.00 off, with a code on the coupon to "double the coupon value" for a $2.00 discount if they purchase their tickets online. When they use the coupon and coupon code online, they are paying a $1.00 convenience fee, but receiving a $2.00 discount and therefore still receiving an overall discount of $1.00 and having the benefit of avoiding the ticket line. Of course this coupon code is only valid for the "early bird" tickets (first two weekends in October). This helps drive early traffic to create an early buzz about the haunt. We've never heard a single complaint about the convenience fee, even from those buying tickets online when the discount is no longer available. We're charging $17.00 for a combo ticket to both attractions. When the discount is used the cost of the two ticket combo is only $15.00, of course plus the $1.00 convenience fee, which is still a great deal for both haunts! I think it's really worth a buck to avoid waiting in a long ticket window line and being able to arrive and get right in the ticket holder line.
I guess we'll never know how many people didn't buy a ticket online because they are avoiding the extra buck fee though. I know I'd pay it and I have for tickets I've purchased online for concerts and events. The many people who buy tickets online and never redeem them tends to more than cover our share of the costs for the online ticketing service too! Just my 2 copper shillings worth!;)
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