Tickets-Only (or Sponsorships-Only) Events are events with no bidding or cash donation/paddle raise component. A Tickets-Only site might be used to sell admission tickets to a performance or outing, or to register attendees for a summer camp, class, or reunion. It can also be used to sell memberships. A Sponsorships-Only event uses the Sponsorship package feature to allow for the display/recognition of sponsors on your homepage.
Do not use the tickets/online registration feature to sell raffle tickets or other games of chance (see more under Things to Consider or Avoid).
Best Practices and Tips
The Tickets feature is designed as a mechanism for assigning bid numbers for in-person bidding events. Because of this, the software will attempt to block purchases of multiple tickets for the same “guest.” If you are allowing individuals to purchase multiple tickets (for themselves) on your site, or to purchase tickets for multiple events (for example: attendance to two different performance nights; or attendance to an array of parties), create those “tickets” as Signup or Sellable catalog items instead, and sell them via a Fundraising Campaign.
Use Custom Fields (user-defined fields) to collect data associated with ticket purchases, such as student names, student ages, teacher names, etc.
Before promoting ticket sales to your event, log out of your site and walk through a ticket purchase yourself to make sure it works the way you expect it to. For this test ticket purchase, use a different email than the one associated with your chair user record. Otherwise, the software will recognize you as an admin and re-route you to the internal ticket sales page.
The best way to let your supporters know you’re selling tickets to your event is to send them an invitation to buy a ticket. Be sure to edit the invitation and ticket sale confirmation email templates to reflect the details of your event. Lists of supporters can be uploaded from a spreadsheet or migrated from previous event sites.
Disable site header links and homepage quick navigation buttons that aren’t relevant to your Ticket/Sponsorship sales. That way, when supporters arrive at your site, they see a single option. You can rename the Buy Tickets link and quick nav button to reflect the nature of your event. For example: “Spring Play Tickets" or "Membership Drive."
Things to Consider or Avoid
Do not use the Tickets/Registration feature to sell raffle tickets or participation in games of chance. The Tickets feature is designed to limit ticket purchases to one per guest. Using the Tickets feature to sell raffle chances will frustrate buyers who wish to purchase more than one. Instead: set up raffle tickets as Sellable or Signup items in your catalog (assuming online raffle sales are permitted in your locality) and create a Fundraising Campaign to sell them.
If you opt to set open and closing dates for your ticket sales, choose your dates with care. Be realistic about your ticket sale cut-off date, or you may end up receiving panicky calls from people who expected to be able to purchase tickets right up to event time. You can encourage early ticket purchases by creating an Early Bird ticket type and offering it at a discounted price.
If you sell tickets to numerous non-bidding events throughout the year, consider setting up a fundraising campaign site to sell these. Once again, these “tickets” must be set up as Sellable or Signup items in your catalog before being added to a campaign. To avoid confusion, turn off online ticket sales on sites where you are offering a number of Signup event items for sale.
Tickets will not display for sale until you have set up a payment mechanism for them. Typically this is a credit card gateway, which can be migrated from a previous event site. But you can also allow for custom payment methods or allow people to pay at the door for their reserved tickets. If you are allowing for custom payment, be sure to set up your custom payment instructions.