CHANGING THE NARRATIVE: Revive Your Database with Legitimate Interest

Where are My Audiences? Audit Your Database

Based on their Missing Audiences survey, focused on looking at which audiences would come back, and when – post-pandemic, Indigo Ltd suggests that two main questions are considered by organisations, i.e. is it best to: 

Focus on attracting customers who haven’t been back to us since before the pandemic
Do we try appealing to new audiences and then keep them?

Indigo suggests that before deciding who to target in communications,  it’s worth auditing your database by asking:

  • How many booked pre-covid? This indicates the size of your starting contact list.

  • What percentage have the proper GDPR permissions? Typically only ~20% have full opt-in consent.

  • Within that group, how many can receive email, postal, phone, or a mix? Segment appropriately.

  • How many made just one purchase pre-pandemic vs multiple? Frequent buyers may be the best initial group to focus marketing efforts on.

Without thoroughly auditing your database, you may only actively market to a fraction of previous patrons.

However, you can leverage legitimate interest to expand the number of contacts you’re actually talking to.

What is Legitimate Interest?

Legitimate interest provides a lawful GDPR basis for contacting customers after an initial purchase, provided:

  • Customers booked and voluntarily shared contact details as part of that transaction.

  • Subsequent communications are about similar offers.

  • There is a clear opt-out mechanism at all touchpoints and in messages.

  • Contact data isn’t shared or sold to third parties without explicit opt-in consent.

Many companies use forms of legitimate interest to justify keeping customers on mailing and contact lists post-purchase, allowing for communications about new releases, sales, relevant offers, and other updates based on preferences and history.

Huge potential exists for arts organisations to use legitimate interest to substantially grow and better engage existing customer database segments. Too often GDPR seems restrictive, but a solid strategy can overcome any limitations.

A Step-By-Step Approach

  • Identify your legitimate interest case and ensure proposed data processing meets basic standards. Key questions to answer are:

    1. Why is this data processing necessary to achieve our goals?
    2. Does the approach comply with GDPR, ePrivacy Directive, and other regulations?
    3. Is there another reasonable way to meet our aims without relying on legitimate interest?
  • Conduct a necessity test. Ask yourself:

    1. Why is this processing specifically important for furthering our interests?
    2. Is there an alternative that would allow us to accomplish the same aims?
  • Perform a thorough balancing test seriously weighing customer privacy rights against organisational interests in contacting them.

  • Devise pragmatic safeguarding measures like careful segmentation and customising messages for specific groups that mitigate risks.

  • Document your decision process, analysis, case details, safeguards, and final outcome. Critical for demonstrating transparency if challenged later.

  • Systematically review and update privacy policies to reflect data held, precise legal justification for use, processing activities, preference management, and withdrawal of consent procedures.

  • Proactively notify customers about use of legitimate interest at relevant purchase touchpoints like box office counters.

Templates for all of these steps can be found with a special thanks to Katy Raines, of Indigo Ltd.

Find them here

Activating Legitimate Interest with Ticketsolve

Enabling expanded legitimate interest communications in Ticketsolve is straightforward:

  • Set clear email opt-in messaging at different points of the booking journey online, mobile, and box office.

  • Upload updated public privacy policy within the Ticketsolve dashboard.

  • DDefault customer email opt-in preference toggle to auto-selected, allowing patrons to manually opt out.

Ticketsolve’s integrated reporting segmented by contact groups also helps assess engagement, monitor opt-in/opt-out trends, identify reactivation opportunities, and more – once Legitimate Interest is set up.

There is a treasure trove of knowledge over in Zendesk on each of these actions for Legitimate Interest set-up, as well as reporting, but you can always call on us if you need a hand!

Head to the Help Centre

Proof It Works: Real-World Case Studies An Táin Arts Centre

An Táin Arts Centre saw new email newsletter subscribers increase 400%+ within 4 weeks using legitimate interest, versus only 3% growth the prior year without it. Despite worries, no rise in opt-outs occurred demonstrating patrons welcome relevant communications.

Mermaid Arts Centre

Mermaid Arts Centre’s identified marketing database expanded 5% relatively quickly just by leveraging existing customer information, requiring no additional marketing budget. Careful staff training and updated policies were used to ensure success. Mermaid noticed no increase in complaints from patrons about additional communications.

Your customers want to hear from you

With preparation and adjustments, arts organizations can leverage Legitimate Interest to grow their database, even making it a part of their long-term marketing strategy . It’s an approach that fuels expansion passively over time –  as customers opt to stay connected if communications prove timely, relevant and valuable, especially considering the deeper relationship that arts and culture organisations have with their customers compared to other industries. 

Thank Yous and Further Resources

With Special Thanks To

  • Mary Claire Cowley – An Táin Arts Centre

  • Aoife Demel – Mermaid Arts Centre

  • Anna Walsh, Director – Theatre Forum

  • Katy Raines – Indigo Ltd

for their invaluable assistance and insight with this paper and for sharing their wisdom so openly.

For further info:

Listen to our podcast episode here Discover further resources here

Ticketsolve’s Powerful Google Analytics 4 Integration Delivers Rich Data and Deep Insights to Arts, Culture and Heritage Institutions

Ticketsolve and One Further have collaborated to develop one of the most comprehensive Google Analytics 4 (GA4) integrations within the arts, culture, and heritage industry.

The aim was to create an easy and streamlined way for arts and culture organisations to integrate with the new GA4 and create a reporting toolkit that pulls the most useful and actionable insights from a variety of data sources.

Why the Change to Google Analytics 4?

Mission based organisations like arts, culture, heritage and live entertainment venues produce a lot of online content, show trailers, blogs, social media posts, marketing campaigns, email, images – all digital and all available for your audiences to engage with. This amount of content and engagement also means a lot of data. The challenge is how to best interrogate that data to get actionable insights that help you meet your goals across your organisation.

That is where web analytics comes in. 

Google Analytics (GA) has been the leader in website analytics since Classic Analytics launched in 2007. 2012’s Universal Analytics, the next evolution, evolved as consumer behaviour and technology evolved, but hasn’t changed since – though people’s online behaviour has: People have moved from desktop browsing to mobiles and apps, cookies which still track users online, are (in some aspects at least) becoming less relevant

Ticketsolve’s Google Analytics 4 Integration

Ticketsolve has always been a proponent of data-driven thinking and data-driven decision making; encouraging the use of Google Analytics (GA). Our integration with GA helps arts organisations understand the full customer journey, from campaign and ad views and the first website visits, through to sales and post sales activity. 

We have dedicated substantial focus and attention to our integration with Google Analytics 4 (GA4), to ensure arts and culture organisations can get the best the actionable insights possible. At the core of Ticketsolve’s integration are Google Tags which are used to track user activity at various stages of their journey. 

Data-driven decision making is about insights, data on its own are just unanalysed observations. Findings take data and capture the patterns within; explaining what happened. Adding context to findings – gives you insights – why it happened. 

These are:

  • Ecommerce tag:

    Other ecommerce events, e.g., items added to the basket or removed, login events, start of a checkout process, etc.

  • Purchase tag:

    Value of the transaction, the products that were bought, etc. Gives insights into traffic sources and campaigns that drive different levels of revenue.

  • GA4 Config Ticketsolve:

    Page views on Ticketsolve domain.  Designed to work with Ticketsolve’s cookie Consent Manager.

Deeper Ecommerce Data = Better Insights

“The ecommerce events being passed through Ticketsolve G4A integration is far more advanced than other ticketing system integrations. Other ticketing systems that we work with will give you GA4 data on the order confirmation page and that’s about it. GA4 can do a lot more – and Ticketsolve has applied that to their integration.”

James Acres, Tech Champion, Data Analytics and Insights, Digital Culture Network

Google Analytics has functionality for sending a variety of ecommerce events through the purchase pathway, besides just the order on the confirmation page. 

  • Product is added to the basket
  • Product is removed from the basket
  • Cart view the cart
  • Checkout was started 
  • Shipping information is added
  • Payment information
  • A login event

Ticketsolve’s integration tracks each small step of these ecommerce related events, giving a true picture of what is going on at each stage of the customer purchase journey. Understanding this can help you identify issues within the process, so you can refine those processes and increase your sales conversion rate.

Full Lifecycle Tracking: Campaign to Purchase

Ticketsolve’s integration does not collect ecommerce data in a vacuum, it is combined with other details and purchase data, such as data from marketing and sales channels, and campaigns right through to purchase. 

This means, you get a full view into the full online customer journey. These campaign details are reflected in GA4 as well as Meta ads manager – or whatever channels you are using for your campaigns. So if for example, a customer clicks on your Facebook or Instagram ad, leading to your site and they make a purchase for £50, that purchase information is sent back to Meta, as well as tracked on GA. So you can see your £20 pound ad generated £50 in sales.

Full Lifecycle Tracking: Campaign to Purchase

In addition to ecommerce and full cycle purchase data, Ticketsolve’s integration also tracks pageviews on the Ticketsolve domain and is designed to work with Ticketsolve’s cookie Consent Manager.

This data helps you to understand how people are engaging on pages that are in your Ticketsolve domain so you can track other behaviours outside of ecommerce events and purchases.

Google Analytics: Still the Best Analytics Tool

While there are other web analytics tools out there, Google Analytics (GA) has the largest market share in the space, with about 28.1 million websites using the services worldwide (1.8 million in the UK), including companies such as Uber, Airbnb and Spotify – and it’s free.

  • Digital Marketing Campaigns: Full Cycle Insight

    GA gives you insight into your marketing campaigns to better understand content performance and sales impact.

    • How did people get to your website? 
    • How much money did they spend as a result of that? 
    • What else did they do on your site? 
    • How did your social media traffic compare to your paid search, to your display advertising, to your Facebook ads etc.?
  • Website Impact: Page by Page Insight

    Gives you a view into how well web pages are doing, i.e., are people taking the action expect on each page.

    • Are your exhibition or event and show pages convincing people to click “Book Now”?
    • Are people reading your blog pages?
    • Are people donating from your Donate Now pages?
    • How good of a job are each of these pages doing?
  • Website Performance: Usability

    GA tracks your website’s overall performance and anything that might impact users ability to engage with your site. 

    • How many people are hitting dead ends when they get to your site, e.g., 404 pages, error messages? 
    • Are pages loading as quickly as they should do? For example, most people won’t wait for a page to load. If you have a large image on a show page, it will throttle the page load time – and will likely impact sales.

Ticketsolve Makes it Simple to Move to GA4

At a high level, there are five steps to get started with Ticketsolve’s GA4 integration.  For detailed, step-by-step instructions: 

Refer to our Zendesk articles Contact Us to get started

Google Analytics 4 is Your Key to Actionable Insights

Customers are doing virtually everything online, so understanding your data is crucial. Google Analytics 4 brings together even more of your critical data to give you the insights you need to reach your goals – whatever they are.  

Ticketsolve makes it easy to move over to Google Analytics 4 and get better data and deeper insights. Whether you are new to analytics or a seasoned pro, GA4 is a great opportunity for a fresh start to your data and embed data driven decision making as a key part of your organisational thinking. 

A special thank you to One Further’s Director Chris Unit. One Further specialises in website analytics, web usability and content strategy in the cultural sector, working across the UK, Ireland, parts of Spain and the United States. Their mission is to ensure arts and culture organisations have good access to their data – and learn how to use it.

You can find their GA4 Reporting Kit, available for FREE to the Ticketsolve community, here.

Lime Tree Theatre Celebrate their 10-year anniversary and embrace changes for the climate

A Spotlight on 10 Years: Lime Tree Theatre and Belltable Arts Hub

Over the years, Lime Tree saw steady growth in ticket sales with an increase of revenue of 13% from 2014 to 2019 which was definitely a result of offering the best local, national and international performing arts as well as encouraging and growing a diverse grassroots community and school performances. n the path of recovery following the health pandemic, their team have critically assessed their operations and are encouraging a green touch on all of their processes. This is a big project for Lime Tree starting from 2019 when they first decided to announce their green ambitions.

The team at Lime Tree Theatre aren’t afraid to make changes for the better

In December 2019, Lime Tree Theatre announced their two-fold green strategy: 

  1. Theatre-wide changes to make a green impact
  2. Encourage audiences to make more informed decisions when engaging with the theatre. 

Importantly, the team wanted to focus on a few critical areas to update and overhaul. Areas that could make a big and lasting impact, but also areas that were easy and quickly wins. 

The main areas the team considered were:

  1. Climate-conscious fundraising and development campaign
  2. Reducing paper and non-recyclables through e-ticketing
  3. Re-assessing their printed materials such as flyers and brochures.

Data helps their team assess their processes and make meaningful informed decisions

Their team currently utilises data insights to make changes that bring changes for the better to their organisation. Using the analytics at their disposal through Ticketsolve, they are able to look at all areas of their organisation from online sales patterns, to programming considerations to changes in behaviours of their patrons and which areas overall drive results for their marketing and box office teams.

Being data-driven means that Lime Tree Theatre uses evidence from audience-generated data to help them to monitor new ideas and practices that they’re experimenting with. Their team has a key understanding of audience personas within their largest audience purchasing segment with over 70% of their ticket bookers identifying as female in the age bracket of 35 – 44. Their conversion rate sits at 5.71% with a per session value on average 10 cents higher than that of their male counterparts.

Demographics are of course important, but with a data driven mind-set like Lime Tree’s they take data insights further and can monitor new marketing and sales ideas and practices that they’re experimenting with. Similarly to understanding their hightest booking segment of their customers, their team are not only able to see how which platforms their most loyal group purchase from, but they’re also able to identify how they fulfill their orders. Lime Tree identified that the number of audiences who purchased delivery for their tickets was low. They were confident their audiences would adapt to the change away from traditional tickets to e-tickets, a change entirely for the benefit of our climate! 


Voluntary Donation LED Drive

The team at Lime Tree Theatre & Belltable have multiple donation campaigns set up through Ticketsolve, including their LED Drive. As part of their drive to be a greener venue, Lime Tree Theatre & Belltable need to transfer all their lighting (and there’s a lot of it!) to greener options. Initially, their focus is on ensuring that all their bulbs are LED, which although much more energy efficient, are considerably more expensive than standard theatre bulbs. Their target is €20,000, and to date, their team have reached 77% of their overall objective in as little as 3 years (with over 2.5 of those years impacted by the health pandemic). 

Going Paperless with E-Ticketing

Did you know that traditional tickets printed on a thermal ticket printer are not recyclable (they often contain harmful bisphenol-A (and S) chemicals)? So not a great option if your objective is a greener venue! Luckily e-tickets are a fantastic option. 

Not only are e-tickets a beautiful way to promote branding and create unique messaging, but e-tickets are more sustainable and cost-effective for theatres. Lime Tree Theatre has eliminated the printing of more than 10,000 tickets a year by promoting e-ticking at their venue since 2019. Audiences at Lime Tree and Belltable have embraced e-ticketing with open arms, with many simply presenting their smartphones for scanned entry. While every so often their front of house teams notice audience members who have printed their e-tickets at home, these printed tickets are fully recyclable (with no nasty chemicals to boot) in comparison to traditional ticket templates which were previously printed and posted at the box office. 

Transforming Brochures and Making More Sustainable Efforts Across Printed Material

This year is important for Lime Tree Theatre & Belltable not only because of their 10th anniversary, but because it is also the launch of their first bumper brochure since 2019. Their team have identified that brochures make a massive impact on immediate ticket sales and that their audiences have created the need for printed material. While they can’t escape the print of paper entirely, their team most definitely took every consideration they could in creating a premium, sustainable 10th anniversary brochure edition for Lime Tree Theatre & Belltable. Working closely with their designer, Detail Factory, they launched what would be their most special and successful brochure yet.

Key Considerations for a Greener, Sustainable Brochure

In order to promote a more sustainable and climate conscious brochure, there were a few important changes that their team looked at.

  • Their team have moved away from glossy printed paper and present a more natural feel to their paper while ensuring a premium polish. This is in an attempt to encourage audiences to recycle their brochure when they are finished with it.

  • Their team have stripped back on their bold branding colours and are pushing a bespoke gold branding for their 10th anniversary. This allows them to reduce the amount of ink used

  • A key recommendation from their designer was to go as far as even considering the font style to be used on the brochure. Prints certain fonts can have a bigger impact on the energy required to print brochures

  • The costs of printed paper has nearly doubled with the issue of uncontrollable rising costs. In order to make sure that the brochure makes the most impact with reduced quantities, their team critically reviewed who would receive a brochure and which areas were best to target for distribution

Transforming Paper Contact to Digital Purchasing with QR Codes

QR codes not only allow audience members to find out more information about the busy season programme ahead, they also provide an important source of truth for the marketing team at the theatre. QR codes also gave their team the flexibility to include all events without some of the final details by encouraging audiences to check back online for live updates regarding onsales and other finer details.

The Customer Campaigns feature is an excellent tool that will allow you to add specific segments of your database into individual campaigns. It can be used for tasks like brochure distribution, fundraiser prospecting, and particular event mailings. Setting up campaign tracking with Ticketsolve is simple. Through Ticketsolve you can generate an unlimited number of QR codes that can then be tracked using our campaign management tools to identify who is booking tickets, leaving donations, or purchasing memberships.

Bringing Green into their Programming with FUTURE LIMERICK Climate Arts Festival

Climate Arts Festival, a week-long festival held in May this year, was run over multiple locations, including Lime Tree Theatre and Belltable. The ambition for this inaugural festival was to use art and creativity to engage the wider Limerick community on the issues of sustainability and climate change, and to spark debate about what a low-carbon future could look like.

FUTURE LIMERICK: Climate Arts Festival is one of just five arts projects across Ireland selected to receive funding from the ESB Brighter Future Arts Fund. Delivered in partnership with Business to Arts, the fund was established to support artists and arts organisations working on creative projects engaging their local communities around sustainability, climate change and the transition to a net-zero future.

Louise Donlon, Director at Lime Tree Theatre | Belltable

“Addressing the challenges we face through the medium of the arts will help to frame them in a way that makes them seem less daunting, and we hope this festival will inspire new & creative ideas for a local-led response to climate change.”

Building Stronger Audience Connections: A Guide to Implementing Successful Membership Schemes

Strong relationships with audiences are the linchpin to success for any arts and culture organisation. Well-designed membership schemes can foster loyalty, trust, and respect between organisations and patrons. This guide is crafted to assist in creating successful membership programs that enhance connections with audiences, benefiting both the organisation and its patrons.

The Basics

Before delving into implementation, it’s crucial to define the goals, benefits, promotion strategy, costs, and success metrics of the membership scheme. Aligning with your organisational mission and appealing to specific audience segments ensures a tailored program that functions seamlessly.

What is a Membership Scheme?

A membership scheme is a system providing exclusive benefits and privileges in exchange for loyalty and support. Beyond fostering loyalty and generating revenue, it contributes to philanthropy and builds community. Aligning with organisational goals, it enhances customer understanding and market insights.

Why Should You Consider Implementing a Membership Scheme?

Establishing, promoting, and maintaining a membership program takes a significant amount of time and resources, and many organisations may not have the capacity to commit to it. 

The most successful membership programmes share a few hallmarks:

  • The schemes align with organisational goals and missions

  • The programmes have clear benefits and make sense for the customer segments where they are offered

  • Programmes are continually monitored and optimised to ensure they are hitting objectives

Before moving forward with a membership scheme, ask yourself, “Will this program help me achieve my organisational goals and objectives?

If yes, you’re good to go!

Start with Your Objectives

Align the membership scheme with organisational objectives, using frameworks like OKRs for specific, measurable goals. Tailor the scheme to meet objectives, considering different types of membership schemes based on your desired outcomes.

  • Benefit Scheme

    Objective: Increase customer frequency, loyalty, and secondary spend

    Approach: Provide benefits that encourage frequent attendance or additional spending

    Considerations: Tailor benefits to engage specific audience segments, prompting them to take action

  • Philanthropic Scheme

    Objective: Increase donor pool and introduce giving at the organisation

    Approach: Focus on philanthropy without providing direct financial benefits to members

    Advantages: Income raised is eligible for Gift Aid. Fosters active communication and increased investment from members

  • Combination Scheme

    Objective: Achieve a balance of financial and philanthropic goals

    Approach: Offer a scheme with both financial and philanthropic benefits

    Advantages: Ideal for organisations aiming to appeal to diverse customer segments, providing a comprehensive approach to membership benefit

What Are You Going To Offer

Designing benefits involves evaluating costs and categorising them as benefits that cost money, those that are free, and those that can be charged for.

Benefits that will cost you money

  •  Percentage Off
  •  Free tickets
  •  Waived booking fees
  •  Free merchandise
  •  Discount in Bar/Café
  • Loyalty Points

Benefits that won’t cost you a penny

  • Exclusive/Priority Booking
  • Thanking them
  • First to hear

Benefits you can charge for

  •  Special events
  • Launches/Press Nights

Final Planning Stages

  • Think of Your Customers

    Consider customer needs and preferences during the planning phase. Conducting surveys and analysing customer data provides valuable insights. Tailoring benefits to address pain points improves the likelihood of success.

  • Pricing Your Membership

    Set an appropriate price by researching similar organisations and analysing customer spending patterns. A balance must be struck to attract members without overwhelming the organisation’s capacity

  • Utilise Your Ticketing System

    Integration with the ticketing system enhances efficiency and member experience. Automation, such as email reminders for renewals, contributes to increased engagement and retention

  • Who’s Going To Manage It

    Appoint a dedicated individual or team to oversee the program, ensuring it aligns with organisational goals and receives proper attention for success

  • Market Your Membership

    A well-thought-out marketing plan is essential. Utilise venue displays, automated emails, customer segmentation, and an easy sign-up process to attract potential members


Thorough planning, alignment with organisational goals, and strategic implementation are essential for a successful membership program. Following a step-by-step process ensures a well-crafted program that strengthens connections with audiences.

Check out our dedicated Academy Session to find out how to set up Memberships on Ticketsolve. 

Ticketsolve Revolutionises Venue Cymru’s Online Sales Experience

Venue Cymru

Formerly known as the Aberconwy Centre and the North Wales Theatre and Conference Centre, Venue Cymru is a large arts, conference and events venue with a reputation for attracting world-class performances and events to its stage. The purpose built venue’s versatility and top-notch facilities make it an ideal location for hosting a diverse range of shows, from internationally renowned musicians like West Life and Manic Street 


Addressing the Big Issues

System crashes, faltering websites and crashing checkout engines mean frustrated audiences and lost sales. Venue Cymru, a prominent arts and entertainment venue in North Wales, found themselves in the unenviable position of exactly that – especially during high-demand on-sales. The result was poor customer experiences and dissatisfaction leading to lost revenue. 

In search of a better solution, Venue Cymru turned to Ticketsolve for help –  due in large part to Ticketsolve’s proven ability to manage high demand, sell out events. 

Big Shows, Big Capacity: Managing Parc Eirias 15,000 Seat Stadium

Everything about Venue Cymru is large-scale but their spaces are reassuringly versatile. The Arena can hold an impressive 2,500 standing or 1,000 sitting, with other venues in the portfolio able to manage a wide variety of set-ups depending on the show and audience makeup. 

In addition to their main venue, Venue Cymru also manages the Parc Eirias Stadium, a 15,000-seat, outdoor stadium which has played host to an impressive array of large-scale sporting events and concerts, including high-profile artists such as Little Mix and Elton John.

From High Profile Events To Intimate Shows, Ticketsolve Brings Reliability and Scalability

With Ticketsolve’s robust, reliable and efficient platform at the helm, Venue Cymru is better able to serve its patrons for all on-sales but especially for high-profile events. Ticketsolve has been instrumental in supporting Venue Cymru’s growth and ability to host even more prestigious events.

As a result, Venue Cymru now enjoys increased ticket sales, revenue and improved customer satisfaction and trust.

Key Benefits of Ticketsolve for Venue Cymru’s Large Capacity, High Demand Shows

  • Scalability

    Ticketsolve’s platform can easily handle the increased traffic and demand associated with high-profile events, ensuring a smooth and reliable ticket purchasing experience for customers

  • Advanced Reporting

    Ticketsolve offers comprehensive reporting tools that help Venue Cymru make informed decisions regarding event scheduling, pricing, and promotions, allowing them to optimise their event calendar and maximise revenue

  • Customisation

    Ticketsolve’s platform can be tailored to meet the specific needs of Venue Cymru and Parc Eirias Stadium, ensuring a seamless and personalised experience for both venues and their patrons

  • Marketing Support

    Ticketsolve’s marketing tools help Venue Cymru promote their events more effectively, reaching a wider audience and driving ticket sales for both their main venue and Parc Eirias Stadium

  • Continuous Support and Optimisation

    Before any large, high-demand on-sales, Ticketsolve works closely with Venue Cymru to understand what is needed for that specific event so that each on-sale runs seamlessly. The team also conducts post on-sale analysis so that future on-sales can be optimised and improved if necessary

Ticketsolve’s Solution: An Established and Proven Onsale Process

Ticketsolve has an established process for managing on-sales, no matter the size or demand  for each and every one of our over 350 arts, culture and heritage customers. 

With our powerful technology, optimised processes and Queue-It integration, the result is an incredibly stable, robust and fast conversion during high demand, sell-out on-sales, Meaning our queueing system is able to handle several thousand requests by answering them in less than 10 milliseconds.

Robust Technology: Optimising Capacity and Traffic Management

  • Setting Up a Pre-Queue for Traffic Management

    Ticketsolve establishes a pre-queue system to effectively manage the influx of traffic to Venue Cymru’s website during on-sales. This pre-queue is especially important for busy on-sales and acts as a virtual waiting room, allowing customers to arrive early and ensures that the website is not overwhelmed when the on-sale begins. With this strategy, both the ticketing system and the website remain stable, providing a smooth and frustration-free experience for patrons.

  • Adding Server Capacity as Needed

    To handle the increased demand during on-sales, Ticketsolve proactively assesses the need for additional server capacity. Ticketsolve scales up resources as necessary and then can accommodate higher levels of traffic without compromising website performance or risking system crashes. This flexibility and adaptability are crucial in maintaining a seamless and reliable ticket purchasing process, even during peak times.

  • Optimising Event Setups for Heavy Traffic

    Ticketsolve works closely with Venue Cymru to ensure that event setups are optimised for heavy traffic and high conversion rates. This involves fine-tuning the ticketing interface, simplifying the purchase process, and ensuring that all necessary information is readily available to customers. By optimising these elements, Ticketsolve helps Venue Cymru deliver an efficient and user-friendly experience that encourages patrons to complete their transactions quickly and easily.

  • Activating Performance Optimisations

    In preparation for on-sale events, Ticketsolve activates a range of performance optimisations designed to enhance the ticket purchasing experience. These optimisations may include load balancing, content delivery network (CDN) integration, and caching strategies, all of which contribute to faster page load times and increased website stability. Ticketsolve employs these performance-enhancing measures to minimise any potential bottlenecks and ensures a smooth and easy to use experience for customers.

Effective Processes: Active Monitoring and Proactive Support Before, During and After On-Sales

  • Monitoring Traffic During On-Sale Events

    Throughout the on-sale process, Ticketsolve continuously monitors traffic to Venue Cymru’s website, enabling them to identify and address any issues that may arise in real-time. This vigilant monitoring allows Ticketsolve to make adjustments as needed, ensuring that the website and ticketing system remain stable and responsive even under the demands of high levels of traffic. By proactively addressing potential issues, Ticketsolve helps to maintain a reliable and efficient ticket purchasing experience for Venue Cymru’s patrons.

  • Proactive Support

    Ticketsolve’s dedicated Support Team manages the entire on-sale process for Venue Cymru, so that any potential issues are promptly addressed and resolved. This active, dedicated support is on hand for all types of events, regardless of ticket demand. Most importantly, the Ticketsolve Support Team provides support before an on-sale begins to make sure no critical steps are missed and also during on-sales in order to address any issues should they arise.

  • Improving All the Time: Post On-Sale Analysis

    Reflection is a critical piece of Ticketsolve’s on-sale process. The Ticketsolve Support Team breaks down on-sales once they are complete in order to better understand what works and what doesn’t work. This type of reflection and analysis helps to improve the overall on-sale process, but also helps to refine on-sales for specific customers and their unique needs. 

Results and Impact

  • Elimination of System Crashes

    Since the implementation of Ticketsolve with the Queue-It integration, Venue Cymru has successfully eliminated system crashes during all on-sales events, including high demand, sell-out events.

  • Improved Customer Satisfaction

    Venue Cymru has increased overall customer satisfaction and lots of positive feedback since the switch to Ticketsolve.

  • Boost in Revenue

    The combination of a reliable on-sale process and an improved customer experience has meant improved ticket sales for  Venue Cymru. This growth in sales underscores the importance of a seamless ticketing system in driving business success.

  • Enhanced Brand Image

    Venue Cymru has bolstered its reputation as a leading arts and entertainment venue by addressing and resolving the issues that once plagued its on-sales. The improved customer experience and streamlined ticketing process has strengthened the venue’s brand image, positioning it as a reliable and customer-centric destination for top-notch events.

  • Fewer Frustrations for the Team

    The transition to Ticketsolve meant the team were fielding fewer calls about system issues, were able to communicate with customers more effectively and had the support of the Ticketsolve on-sale team. The strong processes Ticketsolve brought with them have made the Venue Cymru team more efficient and effective – and certainly reduced some stress.

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Not only did Ticketsolve provide us with a robust and reliable ticketing system, but they also prioritised improving customer experiences. Their user-friendly interface made it easier for our patrons to navigate through the ticketing process, resulting in reduced friction and enhanced satisfaction. The intuitive design of their platform ensured that even during high-demand on-sales, our customers could easily secure their tickets without any technical hiccups.
Mandy Mills, Section Head: Venues Management, Venue Cymru

Whitepaper: Website Accessibility

The Ticketsolve Guide focuses on the topic of website accessibility and has been written in collaboration with technology accessibility consultant Catherine Turner.

Keeping accessibility at the forefront

The purpose of this whitepaper by accessibility advisor Catherine Turner is to provide recommendations on promoting website accessibility, which is important but increasingly complex. There are varying meanings of ‘accessibility’ but it essentially refers to removing barriers for people with disabilities. Small steps can lead to progress through embedding accessibility in objectives and culture.

Untangling the Knots

Website accessibility endeavours to ensure that there are no barriers that prevent interaction with, or access to, websites on the World Wide Web by people with physical disabilities, situational disabilities, and socio-economic restrictions on bandwidth and speed.

The core meaning of accessibility is ensuring that people with disabilities can access websites without barriers. But there are other related meanings like easy website use, easy-to-find information through various channels, digestible information, and compatibility with assistive technologies. These meanings should align rather than conflict within an organisation.

Getting Started

Small steps towards accessibility can accumulate into progress. Accessibility should become embedded in objectives and organisational culture rather than a one-time fix. Tools can help but have limitations, especially for smaller organisations. This guide should bolster your existing efforts – rather than adding any additional pressure. 

Alt Text

Alt text provides an alternative way to communicate the purpose of images. It should enhance overall messaging whether providing images, acting as a call to action, or conveying key information. Ensure that your images are not creating unnecessary barriers.

Video Content

Videos should ideally mix visual and verbal content to be accessible. Providing comprehensive audio description and sign language depends on context and budget. Other methods to engage those who can’t access video should be considered, like written descriptions. Video platforms and playback controls must also be accessible.

Human Touch

Despite increased use of digital tools like bots, human support remains essential for some assisted tech users. An accessibility pledge highlights a commitment to these audience members. This could include direct enquiry channels and ticket holds for access bookers during busy onsales.

Understanding your requirements

UK/Irish law requires public entities to meet AA accessibility standards which ensure readable, traversable content with alt text and zoom/font size support. Ticketsolve aims for AA compliance in all future developments as an iterative process rather than a finish line. Recent features ensure AA compliance throughout the booking journey.

Accessibility Resources

Catherine Turner is a trustee for Colchester Arts Centre, a technology accessibility advisor and an enthusiastic patron of many art forms. She’s also a disabled person with a love of swimming and a hatred of bananas.

Catherine has been the lead consultant for Ticketsolve on a web accessibility project and has supported our system in achieving our goal of reaching the benchmarking required of WCAG 2.1/ AA compliance. 

Discover More

Thank you to Catherine Turner for her collaboration in devising this guide, sharing her experiences and for her guidance.
You can hear more about the accessible design project Catherine consulted on with Ticketsolve in episode 10 of The Arts & Everything in Between Podcast.


Case Study: Regent Ipswich& Corn Exchange

Discover how Regent Ipswich and Corn Exchange Theatres, two leading entertainment venues in the region, faced dramatic change and leveraged the power of technology and people to create operational efficiencies across multiple venues.

About Ipswich Theatres

Boasting a 1500 seat theatre and the 700 seat Corn Exchange, Ipswich Theatres comprised tow the leading entertainment venues in the region. The council-run theatres host a broad range of arts and cultural events, in two venues including film screenings, ballet, musicals, concerts, comedy and West End touring productions, reaching a diverse demographic.

The challenge

Post-pandemic, Ipswich Theatres faced closure of their physical box office due to budget cuts, losing box office expertise and walk-up sales. All box office calls were redirected to the council’s centralized call centre, which handles inquiries on all topics. This was frustrating for customers calling about tickets. With the box office closure, Ipswich lost staff who’d been with them for decades – plus their knowledge and expertise. This left remaining staff feeling uncertain and put pressure on them.

Besides budget cuts, Ipswich dealt with reduced ticket sales from the pandemic and cost of living crisis. This led to staff redundancies, less resources and uncertainty.

Ipswich needed to maintain an engaging customer experience without a physical box office, ensure accessibility without face-to-face engagement, manage expectations without overburdening customers, and energise burnt out staff.

The Solution

Ipswich focused on 4 primary technology solutions familiar through Ticketsolve: online help centre, chatbot, e-tickets/vouchers, email automations.

  • Online Help Centre

    They built an online self-service help centre with Zendesk, using existing website content and internal docs. This provides 24/7 answers without relying on call centre hours.

  • Integrated Chatbot

    The integrated Zendesk chatbot provides help during ticket bookings without customers leaving the page. Chatbot pulls relevant help center articles based on questions asked.

  • E-tickets and E-vouchers

    They moved to mobile e-tickets/vouchers. E-tickets are easy to scan at the venue, and customisable e-vouchers retain a high quality feeling.

  • Email automations

    Email automations through Ticketsolve send relevant, segmented communications. New customers get info 2 days after booking.

These solutions filled resource gaps, empowered customers to self-serve, and provided personalised experiences despite limited human resources.

The Results

  • An Iterative Approach

    Ipswich took an agile and iterative approach: implement, get feedback, refine. They continually improve the help centre based on most viewed articles and customer feedback. Their use of technology supported this iterative process.

  • The key numbers

    After launching the help centre, the most popular questions were about reopening, refunds, exchanges, updating account details – showing it met key needs.  In the first year, the help centre had 73,000+ views of articles and 30,000+ chatbot interactions. Searches on the website increased by 2,800+. The call volume to the council call center has dropped since launching these self-service options. Initiatives are successfully reducing calls and empowering customers. E-tickets and vouchers have been well received. Customizations like gift cards retain the quality feel. Over 90% now use e-tickets, reducing printing and improving convenience

  • Quality customer communications

    Ipswich uses Net Promoter Score surveys immediately after ticket purchases to catch issues quickly vs post-event. They follow-up via email with unhappy customers. Automated, personalised emails go out based on customer segments like new buyers. This scales communications without heavy staff effort.

  • The ability to evolve

    These technology solutions sit alongside human team members, enhancing service vs fully replacing humans. Self-service and automation fill gaps and relieve burdens on the team. Ipswich credits their people and their ability to evolve as the real power behind navigating substantial changes successfully. Being open, creative, and adaptive has been key.

Tackling even bigger challenges

Beyond internal operations, Ipswich utilised their experience leveraging technology to tackle even bigger challenges: using Ticketsolve’s fundraising tools and email automations, they ran a public donation campaigns raising money for the Red Cross.

Looking to the future

They are still making tweaks, but Ipswich believes this agile, human-centred approach balancing talented teams and supporting tech will best serve their audiences moving forward.

Find out more about Ipswich Theatres