How ticket companies can merchandise their perishable inventory

Tickets have a sell-by-date, and lose all value once this date has passed. It is a huge burden for ticketing outlets. Empty seats mean lost revenue. According to industry research, up to 40% of concert tickets can go unsold every year (Live Nation, September 2014).

Efforts to combat this issue have already been tried and tested by Spotify, teaming up with Songkick to deliver personalized concert alerts based on your listening behavior through the application (Spotify, November 2015). Music streaming service Rhapsody has taken this one step further, teaming up with BandPage to deliver concert push notifications to your phone whilst listening to the artist in question. Delivering this stock in a way that appeals to the customer can make all the difference.  

Using behavioral preferences and geolocation to match customers with what they like, where they are, you can drive better engagement. It also strengthens the likelihood of impulse purchasing, creating a “moment of intent” for customers (BandPage, January 2016). This moment of driven decision making is particularly advantageous within the music industry, and can be easily achieved by using customer data in the right way.

Stock needs to be shifted fast and urgency messaging can help you do that. It can inject the haste needed to spur the customer into making a decision fast, rather than second guessing and making repeat visits to the site. Surfacing ‘Last few remaining’ messages on concert ticket pages can be the nudge needed to push the customer over the line.

High abandonment rates often see ticketing operators fall at the last hurdle. Customers do not wait around. They are spoilt for choice and will move on if they are made to wait too long. Error messages and slow running sites both contribute to basket abandonment. Difficulty in finding suitable seating, or locations, can inflame that frustration. Experiences that aren’t personalized, and instead flood people with options are also off-putting. Curating selections based on preference data can help make customers lives easier and increase the chance of them making a purchase.

Using exit prevention and intervention techniques to control abandonment is imperative for ticket selling outlets. Asking your customer if they need any further information or alternative seating can add a degree of reassurance, and make all the difference during the checkout process.

Perishable inventory is a key challenge for ticketing operators, but with the right data-driven approach it is a challenge that can be overcome.

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