Picture this: It’s opening night for your newest show, and your cast and crew are in a flurry of excitement as they prepare to take their places for the first number. You have volunteers out front checking in your patrons with a printed list … but you notice the line is long and people are getting impatient with the haphazard process. At this moment, your top priority should be preparing for a smash-hit opening night, but instead, you’re stressed out about creating a more streamlined check-in solution for your patrons. 

Adopting new technologies in the form of ticket scanning can easily prevent this situation from happening to you. Not to worry – On The Stage offers an easy-to-use ticket scanning solution to ensure you can focus on what really matters before, during, and after your shows: your people and your art!  

What is Ticket Scanning?

In reality, we’ve probably all seen ticket scanners before – at a Broadway show, concert venue, or other creative performance. With ticket scanning, you print off your ticket or save a PDF of your ticket onto your mobile device. Then, you show an employee the barcode, who then quickly scans it and sends you on your way. Voila! 

What are the Alternatives?

Alternatives exist to the technology of ticket scanning. These include: 

  • Manual check-ins: Many theaters employ volunteers for manual check-ins. Typically, these volunteers have a list of all reservation names and check them off one by one as they come into the theatre. 
  • Checking confirmation emails: If you’ve created an online option for buying tickets, volunteers can alternatively check a patron’s confirmation email before they enter. 
  • Utilizing printed tickets: Whether you’re selling physical tickets at the door or have your patrons print them off and bring them from home, many people still rely on turning in a printed ticket in exchange for entry. 

Why These Don’t Work as Well:

Now, don’t get us wrong – these methods have their perks, to be sure. But there are several downsides to the options we’ve listed. These include:

  • Single points of entry: If you’re utilizing a list of some kind to check in your patrons, or using a volunteer to check confirmation emails, this means you only allow a single point of entry to your guests. This, in turn, will cause longer lines, longer wait times, and a less professional experience overall.
  • Opportunities for fraud: While one bad apple doesn’t always ruin the whole bunch, sometimes people manipulate the system for their own benefit. Say a patron purchases a single ticket. Without a scanning option, they can easily forward that confirmation email to others, who can show the same email to the volunteer. You’ve now allowed several people into your show without payment. 
  • General confusion: Another issue with confirmation emails or checking off from a manual list is that family members and large groups may not know exactly what they’re supposed to show you. Additionally, if you employ reserved seating, some people may not know exactly where to sit if they don’t have any easily-referenceable ticket. 
  • Credit card disputes: If you don’t have a digital record to confirm a ticket scan, you may lose money if a patron disputes their ticket purchase with their credit card company. This, in turn, loses your company money. 
  • Time wasted: A build-up issue that stems from all the others? Time wasted. Not only will this frustrate your patrons who want to see your show, but you may even have to push the curtain time back to accommodate guests making their way into the theatre.

Ticket Scanning Benefits

Enough with the negative, right? If you ditch your old ways and lean into ticket scanning, myriad benefits await you, including:

  • A streamlined check-in process: No more rifling through pages of names or asking the guest to search through their email to find a confirmation. With ticket scanning, it’s a one-and-done interaction.
  • Improved entry speed: With ticket scanning, patrons will be through the door and into the theatre in far less time with far less hassle.
  • A more professional experience: A common goal for theatres is to aim higher when it comes to patron satisfaction. Ticket scanning will create a more professional feel and leave your guests happier.
  • The creation of digital records: Having digital records of your ticket scans has an array of benefits. This can help you tremendously if a patron attempts to dispute a ticket purchase with their credit card company. And on a more positive note, you can also utilize digital records to create more contacts and expand your marketing opportunities. Win-win! 

On The Stage’s Ticket Scanning Solution 

Since we’re surely sold you on the benefits of ticket scanning by now, it’s time to introduce On The Stage’s Ticket Scanning solution! 

On the patron’s end of things, it couldn’t be easier. It goes like this:

  1. Patrons will purchase tickets from your customized, professional website and customized domain created through On The Stage. 
  2. After that, patrons will receive an automated PDF ticket that’s attached to their order.
  3. The tickets themselves are web-enabled and printable, so patrons can choose whether to print their ticket to bring to the show, or just have it scanned on their device come showtime. No other technology or applications needed!
  4. No step four. It’s just that easy!

As well as creating a streamlined process for your patrons, On The Stage’s solution makes it incredibly easy for your front-of-house volunteers to check-in guests quickly. Here’s why:

  • The scanning solution lives within the On The Stage application dashboard, meaning volunteers have access to an intuitive and easy-to-use process to scan tickets.
  • Multiple scanners can be utilized by your volunteers, so long as they have a device with a camera. Talk about speed! 
  • You not only save time but also money and resources! On The Stage’s ticket scanning solution works with the devices you already have, so you don’t need to purchase special equipment or expensive scanners, which is often required by other providers. 
  • The technology syncs up automatically, meaning there will be no at-the-door issues if someone attempts to scan a code that’s already been used. In short, the technology will quickly show a scan message (approved, no ticket found, duplicate ticket, etc.) that is fast and easy to read, meaning you’ll be able to troubleshoot immediately.
  • On The Stage’s ticket scanning technology allows patrons to transfer tickets to different party members. While this is convenient for them, this also creates more contacts for you. (Think 8 names and emails instead of just 1!) This gives you a better idea of how many people have come to your show, as well as the opportunity for better marketing and a larger contact database
  • And on the business end of things, On The Stage’s ticket scanning will be a key component to your success in credit card disputes. Each ticket scan will create a digital record with the time and date it was scanned. This lends itself to protecting your show and your company from losing money unnecessarily.


So, what are you waiting for? On The Stage’s ticket scanning solution lends itself to success, giving you and your team more bandwidth to focus on your art. If you want to learn more, book a demo today.