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Art Galleries and Museums Ticketing Systems

Sorry Art Galleries and Museums, but you're doing ticketing wrong and it's costing you money.

art gallery museum ticketing ticketing software Mar 23, 2022

If you are an Art Gallery or a Museum, sorry to tell you but most of you are doing your ticketing wrong and it’s costing you money. 

Over the years and meeting with many museums and art galleries, it is always a surprise to see some of the largest, most sophisticated galleries and museums in Australia as using the wrong technology for ticketing.

If you are an Art Gallery or a Museum and you are doing any of these things, you are doing ticketing wrong.

Tendering for a new ticketing system for each and every exhibition.

Why it’s wrong:

It’s wasting time - for the people who have to create the tender, for everyone going through the tender process and the amount of people who have to sign off. Tendering is a lengthy process, with so much admin and documentation, plus demo’s pitching, shortlisting and selection. 

Cost - you are paying people to manage the above and so you can add this into the ‘waste time’  category. In addition to this, each system has their own way to validate tickets so you need different hardware each time. Some also charge a commission on each ticket sold so add this to your cost of sale.

Reporting - different systems have different reporting and you then will need to analyse and process this data in order to determine how well an exhibition sales have performed. You can add this to the “wasting time” category. That is, of course, if you have access to the data as it's usually owned and controlled by the distribution ticketing platform.

Slow to market - it means that you are very slow to market. You are unable to launch a new product (being the exhibition quickly and into all relevant channels), this can also mean lost opportunities if you can’t enter the market quickly.

You choose a distributor as a ticketing system.

Why it’s wrong:

Sorry to tell you but Ticketek and TicketMaster ARE NOT a ticketing system. They are a ticketing distribution and marketing platform and should be treated as such. Through choosing this type of business to ticket your exhibition means that you limit your distribution via other channels and if you have distribution/trade agreements in place, then often you force the partner to pre-purchase tickets at their nett rate (which has been hacked {i.e. a work around} in the distributor system) which can be a significant risk to the trade partner. This often can stifle distribution opportunities as distributors often choose to not include your exhibition due to this risk.

Also on this, an event ticketing system is also not a ticketing system for visitor attractions - so that includes Eventbrite, Sticky Tickets and Try Booking. In addition to this, Performance Venues ticketing (like Tessitura) is also not a visitor attraction ticketing system, it is designed for theatres not attractions. 

If you are management and don’t believe me? Go and ask your Tourism Manager as they will agree.

They are not "one source of inventory" and customers who then go to these platforms on the day of purchase see that it is sold out. However there are tickets available onsite. How many customers then do not attend as they think that they have missed out?

You are a visitor attraction

At the end of the day, you are a visitor attraction and need to treat a ticketing system as the backbone to your primary revenue stream. There are some great systems out there that cover ALL your requirements including POS, Retail & Food & Beverage POS (including relevant warehouse/inventory needs), Online sales, trade and distribution sales (in real-time with direct API connectivity or with agent log ins), one single source of validation - scanning devices and POS hardware, membership management.

The whole point of this is that having the one system in house allows your art gallery or museum the opportunity to maximise revenue as much as possible to reach your customers in the channels they prefer to book. Everything is centralised so reporting is streamlined and simplified and adding new exhibitions can become a 15-minute process instead of months.

Want to know more? Contact me

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