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Should you ask for ticket holder names on your online registration forms?

By Jim Romanik Subscribe to RSS | December 23rd 2011 | Views:

When you’re selling tickets to an event online, it’s easy to add fields to ask for the names of each ticket holder, but should you?

Of course, it would be nice to know exactly who’s coming, but adding extra fields will have an impact on the number of tickets you sell.

If your goal is to sell as many tickets as possible and you want people to buy multiple tickets at a time or even full tables, we recommend that you do not ask for ticket holder names.

Reasons to not ask for ticket holder names:

1. It adds friction to the sale. It really doesn’t take that much extra time to enter a few names, but it could be just enough extra work for someone to put off completing the purchase until later, and maybe never come back.

2. It doesn’t encourage large orders. Seeing blank name fields doesn’t look right, so people may cut back their purchase to just the names that they know at the time.

3. Even if people do enter names for each ticket holder, there is still a good chance that the ticket may change hands. A wrong name is worse than no name at all.

4. It adds confusion. Of course, the names section can be designed and formatted nicely, but if people are not very internet savvy it’s just another obstacle that can cause people to abandon the purchase.

5. The form is easier to build and test, the reports are simple and overall it’s less work for you.

When you really must collect names, use these suggestions:

1. Don’t force people to enter names – show the name fields, but have some clear text stating that the field can be left blank.

2. Keep it simple and don’t ask for more information than you really need – If you won’t ever email or phone ticket holders, don’t ask for these details.

3. Make it easy for people to add the names later – some people just won’t bother to update the names, but have the option for people to login to update names on their own and provide a phone number so that you can do it for them.

Jim Romanik - About Author:
Jim is the president of ePly, an event registration software that makes event registration software a breeze. For more information about online registration software please visit

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