Dec 21, 2023

How to build a marketplace for event tickets

Creating an online platform for event tickets presents a promising business venture with immense potential. For those contemplating building such a website, this guide is tailored to explore the reasons and methods behind establishing a marketplace for event tickets.

What is a marketplace for event tickets?

Online marketplaces for event tickets are platforms where individuals can buy and sell tickets for various events such as concerts, sports games, and theater shows. These marketplaces provide a convenient and secure way for buyers to find tickets for their desired events. Sellers can list their tickets for sale, setting their own prices and determining the quantity available. Buyers can browse through the available tickets, compare prices, and make purchases directly through the platform. These marketplaces often offer features such as ticket verification, customer reviews, and secure payment options to ensure a safe and reliable ticket-buying experience.

Why build a website for event tickets?

What are the benefits for buyers?

Buyers on the event ticket marketplace enjoy several benefits. Firstly, they have access to a wide range of events and tickets, allowing them to choose from a diverse selection. Secondly, buyers can often find tickets at competitive prices, as sellers may offer discounts or special deals on the platform. Lastly, the marketplace provides a convenient and secure platform for buyers to purchase tickets, ensuring a smooth and hassle-free experience.

What are the benefits for sellers?

Sellers on the event ticket marketplace also reap numerous advantages. Firstly, they have a platform to reach a large audience of potential buyers, increasing their chances of selling tickets quickly. Secondly, sellers can set their own prices and have control over their listings, allowing them to maximize their profits. Lastly, the marketplace provides sellers with a secure payment system and protects them from fraudulent buyers, ensuring a safe transaction process.

What are the benefits for the marketplace owner?

The marketplace owner benefits from operating an event ticket platform in various ways. Firstly, they earn revenue through transaction fees or commissions charged to sellers for each ticket sold. Secondly, as the platform gains popularity and attracts more buyers and sellers, the owner can generate a steady stream of income. Lastly, the marketplace owner can establish partnerships with event organizers or promoters, further expanding their business and revenue opportunities.

Successful marketplaces for event tickets

Here are a few thriving online platforms exclusively focused on event tickets. Analyzing these platforms can provide valuable insights into the market and assist you in finding your own path.

  1. Ticketmaster: Ticketmaster is one of the largest and most popular platforms for event tickets. It offers a wide range of tickets for various events such as concerts, sports games, and theater shows.

  2. StubHub: StubHub is another well-known marketplace for event tickets. It allows users to buy and sell tickets for concerts, sports events, theater performances, and more.

  3. SeatGeek: SeatGeek is a platform that aggregates tickets from various sources, including primary ticket sellers, secondary marketplaces, and individual sellers. It provides a comprehensive selection of event tickets for users to choose from.

  4. Eventbrite: While primarily known for ticketing and registration services for smaller events and conferences, Eventbrite also offers a marketplace for event tickets. It allows users to discover and purchase tickets for a wide range of events.

  5. Vivid Seats: Vivid Seats is a marketplace that specializes in concert tickets, sports events, and theater shows. It offers a secure platform for buying and selling tickets, with a focus on providing a great user experience.

What features does a platform for event tickets need?

The most important functionality of a marketplace for event tickets is to provide a platform for buying and selling tickets for various events. This includes:

  1. Ticket listings: The marketplace should allow event organizers or sellers to list their tickets for sale, including details such as event name, date, venue, seating information, and ticket price.

  2. Ticket search and discovery: Users should be able to search for tickets based on event type, location, date, or artist/performer. The marketplace should provide filters and sorting options to help users find the tickets they are interested in.

  3. Secure transactions: The marketplace should facilitate secure transactions between buyers and sellers, ensuring that payments are processed safely and securely. This may involve integrating with payment gateways or using escrow services to hold funds until the event has taken place.

  4. Ticket verification: To prevent fraud and counterfeit tickets, the marketplace should have mechanisms in place to verify the authenticity of tickets. This may involve partnering with event organizers or using barcode scanning technology to validate tickets.

  5. Ticket delivery: The marketplace should provide options for ticket delivery, such as electronic tickets (e-tickets) that can be downloaded or emailed, or physical tickets that can be shipped to the buyer's address.

  6. Customer support: The marketplace should have a customer support system in place to handle inquiries, issues, or disputes related to ticket purchases. This may include a help center, live chat, or email support.

  7. User reviews and ratings: To build trust and transparency, the marketplace should allow users to leave reviews and ratings for sellers and events. This helps buyers make informed decisions and encourages sellers to provide a good experience.

  8. Mobile compatibility: With the increasing use of smartphones, the marketplace should have a mobile-friendly website or a dedicated mobile app to allow users to browse and purchase tickets on the go.

Overall, the most important functionality of a marketplace for event tickets is to provide a user-friendly and secure platform that connects buyers and sellers, facilitates transactions, and ensures a smooth ticket buying experience.

What are the options & costs of building a marketplace for event tickets?

Costs of building from scratch

Building a marketplace for event tickets from scratch can involve various costs. These costs can include:

  1. Development Costs: Hiring a team of skilled developers to design and develop the marketplace platform, including the frontend, backend, and database architecture. This can be a significant expense depending on the complexity of the platform and the hourly rates of the developers.

  2. Infrastructure Costs: Setting up and maintaining the necessary infrastructure, such as servers, hosting, and cloud services, to ensure the marketplace runs smoothly and can handle high traffic volumes. These costs can vary depending on the scalability requirements and the chosen infrastructure providers.

  3. Payment Processing Costs: Integrating a secure and reliable payment gateway to facilitate transactions between buyers and sellers. This may involve transaction fees or a percentage of each transaction as charges imposed by the payment gateway provider.

  4. Security Costs: Implementing robust security measures to protect user data, prevent fraud, and ensure the integrity of the marketplace. This can include measures like SSL certificates, encryption, and regular security audits, which may require additional investments.

  5. Marketing and Promotion Costs: Promoting the marketplace to attract both buyers and sellers. This can involve various marketing strategies such as online advertising, search engine optimization, social media campaigns, and partnerships with event organizers. The costs for marketing and promotion can vary depending on the target audience and the desired reach.

It is important to note that the costs mentioned above are estimates and can vary significantly based on factors such as the complexity of the marketplace, the desired features, the development approach, and the specific requirements of the project.

Other choices for constructing a marketplace for event tickets

Creating an online marketplace for event tickets from the ground up is a significant, costly endeavor. However, nowadays, there are numerous alternative methods to construct a marketplace that do not require a substantial budget.

The option you should select depends on:

  • The features you believe your marketplace requires
  • Your technical abilities (or the skills within your team)
  • Your budget
  • The available time.

The various methods to build a marketplace are:

  • Utilizing WordPress and plugins
  • Constructing on top of open-source software
  • Utilizing a combination of no-code tools
  • Utilizing a dedicated no-code marketplace SaaS tool
  • Developing on top of an API-based marketplace SaaS tool

In addition to your limitations in terms of skills and budget, you should also consider the speed of learning. Launching your platform for event tickets quickly enables you to rapidly gain insights about your audience. These insights assist you in developing a platform that users prefer over any other existing solution.

Sharetribe's marketplace software is designed with this iterative learning process in mind.

First, we assist you in launching a platform for event tickets in one day without any coding. Use the two-week long free trial of Sharetribe's Build plan to get your marketplace ready fast. When you're happy with your marketplace, you can subscribe to go live.

Once you have launched, you can learn what additional features and functionality your platform needs to cater to your audience. You may want to completely change the design and workflow, integrate multiple third-party services, or create a mobile app. With Sharetribe, you can easily customize all these changes and much more, either on your own or with the assistance of our Expert partners.

At Sharetribe, we have been constructing marketplaces for over ten years. Our experience and expertise are available to you through our content resources, which you can access and utilize regardless of how you choose to build your platform.

Best of luck with your website for event tickets!

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