Ticketing Kiosks 101
Ticketing Kiosks 101
Everything you need to know about self-service in ticketing and starting your own ticket kiosk project!Talk to an expert
Self-service ticketing kiosks can revolutionize the operations of an event or venue, providing guests with an expedited experience and more freedom while allowing staff to focus on providing a great experience.
This guide will provide an overview of self-service ticketing kiosks, helping you determine if your business or organization could benefit from this type of solution and making sure you start on the right foot.
Table of Contents (expand)
What is a self-service ticket kiosk?
Self-service ticketing kiosks allow visitors to purchase tickets directly from a kiosk machine, automating the sales process for your event or venue.
Ticketing kiosks can also be used to allow customers to print and pick up pre-purchased tickets through a 'will-call' style setup.
Both options reduce lines and provide a more seamless entry experience for visitors while freeing staff to have more meaningful interactions with guests.
Where are ticketing kiosks used?
Attractions, including theme parks, water parks, aquariums, and zoos
Visitors can purchase tickets to individual activities, season passes, or memberships with a few simple taps.
Fairs, festivals, and other seasonal events, including haunts, hay rides, corn mazes, and U-pick produce
Attendees can quickly view options and purchase entry passes, ride tickets, and other add-ons.
Family entertainment centers, including mini-golf, trampoline parks, rock climbing gyms, and zip line experiences
Guests can buy tickets, sign waivers, and start their adventure quickly and easily.
Movie theaters and cinemas
Customers can select their seats and movies and pay for their tickets without having to wait in line.
Museums, galleries, and traveling exhibits
Visitors can purchase tickets to exhibits, including options for ticket packages and timed entry for in-demand shows and openings.
Music venues, performing arts centers, and casino performance venues
Guests can browse the event, select seats, and purchase tickets directly from a box office kiosk.
Sports stadiums and arenas
Fans can purchase tickets to a game or a season of games, as well as pick up pre-purchased tickets through will-call.
Trade shows, conventions, and expos
Ticketing kiosks can be used to speed up the registration and entry process for large-scale events..
Customers can buy and print tickets directly from a kiosk at train stations, airports, and other transportation hubs.
Winery, brewery, and food truck events
Customers can purchase food and drink tickets, reducing long lines and allowing vendors to spend less time accepting payments and more time interacting with guests..
What types of components make up a ticketing kiosk?
A physical kiosk enclosure that houses the tablet or screen and any associated printers and/or peripherals makes the ticketing system easily accessible to visitors and protects physical components from potential damage or theft.
Tablet or Screen
A touchscreen-enabled tablet or screen that runs and displays the selected ticketing software.
Popular options include Apple iPad, Samsung Galaxy, and Microsoft Surface tablets, as well as Elo touchscreens.
A visitor interface that guides customers through the process of selecting tickets, issuing payment, and entering any required information to complete their purchase.
Graphics & Signage
Custom graphics and other signage can be used to more closely link the kiosk to your brand identity as well as provide a call to action to attract visitors to your ticketing kiosks.
Access to the tablet’s built-in cameras or an external camera accessory can allow the kiosk to take pictures of a customer and/or a form of identification to verify a ticket purchase.
Most ticketing kiosk solutions include a ticket printer to issue physical tickets and receipts for purchases.
Printers are often enclosed within the kiosk enclosure to prevent unauthorized access or tampering and eject tickets or other printed materials through a slot or ticket catch. Popular options include Boca Lemur, Zebra, and Epson printers.
Payment systems, including credit card readers, chip and pin, or contactless card readers, allow visitors to pay using their preferred method of payment.
While some ticketing solutions accept cash, more are moving away from this type of solution due to maintenance requirements and security concerns.
A number of other peripherals can be integrated into a ticketing kiosk to address specific use cases or requirements.
For example, wristband printers can offer easy proof of entry for events. Barcode and/or QR code scanners can be used to quickly lookup a previous ticket purchase in a will-call printing kiosk setup. An external keyboard and/or stylus can make data entry faster and more accurate.
Your business is adapting to a rapidly changing world, and your kiosk investment should too. That’s why Kiosk Group Modular Solutions™ are designed to easily adjust to your evolving needs.
Our modular hardware solutions for self-service ticketing allow you to select the components and graphics you need to create your perfect ticketing solution. Our uncompromising commitment to quality and ability to scale make our kiosks a great choice for small businesses and major systems alike.
Let’s create your kiosk solution today.Talk to an expert
Slim Countertop Tablet Mount
Small Graphic Panel
Roo Plus Tablet Kiosk
SoundStik Audio Handsets
Benefits of introducing ticketing kiosks into your business
Shorter wait times & additional burst capacity
Self-service ticketing systems put visitors in control of the process. Once installed, ticketing kiosks are an ‘always on’ resource that don’t require scheduling or predetermined shift lengths, adding extra capacity at peak times and during unexpected rushes.
Kiosks allow for easy customization and upsell opportunities with options that can be clearly laid out and presented consistently every time during the ticketing process.
Improved accuracy and fewer errors
Kiosks can provide clear and consistent messaging that helps the visitor understand their options step-by-step as needed. As the visitor is entering their own ticketing request into the system, there is less chance for miscommunication or errors.
Ticketing kiosks can make operations more efficient and reduce costs by streamlining frequent, repeated interactions with visitors.
Enhanced customer insight
Analytics embedded into your ticketing kiosk system can provide a wealth of information about your visitors and their preferences.
Increased customer satisfaction
While self-service is not a new concept, the COVID-19 pandemic dramatically changed how customers interact with businesses, quickly accelerating the uptake of new technologies and methods of communication. Ticketing kiosks extend this type of interaction to your physical locations, allowing visitors to choose how and when they interact directly with staff.
Standalone Tablet Kiosk
Datalogic Barcode Scanner
Backdrop Graphic Panel for Standalone
Signature Plus Stylus
Countertop Tablet Kiosk
Keys to planning a successful ticket kiosk project
Putting together the perfect solution for your event or venue starts by determining your project’s and visitors’ needs, then identifying hardware and software solutions that can meet those requirements.
Scope the area
You’ll need to identify the total number of kiosks and their potential placement during the planning phase. This process requires taking into account visitor traffic, sightlines, available floor space, and availability of power and internet for the ticketing kiosks.
Look at the visitor flow
Consider how and when your ticketing kiosks will be used - requirements for a ticketing project for an attraction where visitors may be coming and going at different times are likely to be very different from that of a venue featuring events at specific timeslots.
Each visitor's interaction is unique and dependent on factors such as the size and complexity of the interface, their level of familiarity with the software, and other environmental factors. While is impossible to determine how long each visitor's interaction might take ahead of time, it is possible to average interactions over time to get a sense of ticketing system throughput.
Consider a pilot
Larger projects often benefit from a pilot in a limited number of locations to make sure there are no surprises or changes that need to be made before rolling out kiosks to every location.
For projects requiring custom kiosk hardware or software, a pilot phase also allows time to evaluate a proposed solution.
Select the right vendors
While it can be tempting to look for an ‘all-in-one’ solution, businesses and organizations are often better served by identifying software and hardware solutions for a ticketing kiosk project separately.
Identifying vendors specializing in each area separately allows for a direct relationship with better support and service, as well as lower overall project costs.
For example, if you choose to work with a dedicated hardware manufacturer with experience in ticketing kiosks, you may find yourself eligible for additional volume discounts or with more flexible options when it comes to replacing a component that has gone end-of-life when compared to a company that marks up and resells someone else’s existing hardware.
By the same token, you are likely to get a quicker resolution for a software question or bug if you have a direct customer relationship with that developer.
At the same time, developing independent relationships with software and hardware vendors gives your project more flexibility over time and prevents lock-in to a single proprietary solution. If issues arise or your project expands beyond the capabilities of a specific developer or manufacturer, you can source a new hardware or software component without having to replace your complete system.Talk to an expert
Identifying the best ticket kiosk software
When selecting ticket kiosk software, you should look for a system that is easy to customize, set up, and maintain.
A number of factors will play into the decision of what’s the right choice for your specific project:
Kiosk Ticket Purchasing & Printing
An easy-to-use visitor interface is crucial to the success of any ticketing kiosk project, preventing delays at the kiosk and increasing customer satisfaction.
- What does the visitor interface look like? How easy is it to use?
- How long does it take for the average visitor to complete a transaction?
- Can the interface be easily customized for my event or venue?
- Is the interface accessible for users with visual or other impairments?
- Does the software support ticket printing or are tickets distributed in another way?
- What operating systems and/or tablets are supported?
- What payment methods and/or processors are supported?
Online Ticket Purchasing
Online sales prior to an event allow customers to reserve tickets, which can be picked up at a ‘will-call’ self-service kiosk prior to entry.
- What does the online ticket portal look like?
- Can the portal be customized with my logo and branding?
- Can customers see and reserve specific seats?
- How does your system handle periods of heavy demand (for example, when tickets first go on sale)?
- How are requests for refunds handled?
Analytics can help you monitor cash flow, understand customer ticket purchase patterns and uncover potential opportunities to grow your audience.
- What types of reports are available?
- Is reporting real-time?
- How is data organized and/or sorted?
- Can I change the reporting period?
- Is it possible to compare data, for example, from two time periods or events?
The ticketing management dashboard should provide you with an easy way to access, manage, and analyze information such as ticket sales and customer data.
- What does the management dashboard look like?
- What kind of training is required to use the dashboard?
- Can I restrict certain functions (for example, permission to issue a refund) to specific users?
- Can I easily export data from the dashboard?
- Do you offer remote management for kiosks in the field?
Security & Data Privacy
Security and data privacy should always be at front of mind when selecting software for a ticketing kiosk project.
- How are tickets issued through your system verified as valid?
- How is customer information stored and how long is data kept?
- Is my customer data shared or used for any other purposes?
- Does your system prevent bulk or automated ticket purchases to deter scalping?
- Is there any fraud detection for ticket purchases?
- Is all payment processing through your system PCI compliant?
- Does the software comply with applicable data privacy laws in my country?
Onboarding, Documentation & Support
Onboarding and ongoing support should be part of any ticketing kiosk vendor package.
- What does your onboarding process look like? How long does it typically take?
- Do you offer access to a knowledge base or other technical documentation?
- How can I contact your support team?
- What are your support team’s hours and where are they based?
- How long does it typically take to get a response?
- Is on-site support or service available if needed?
- What happens if there is a problem during off-hours?
Pricing & Processing Fees
Pricing structures can vary greatly between different ticketing software vendors and depending on the size of your project.
- How is pricing structured?
- Is there any charge for members of my team to access the dashboard and admin functions (i.e., per-seat licenses)?
- How are payments processed?
- Do you support my existing payment processor?
- Are there any fees charged on processed ticket payments?
- Are there any additional charges I should be aware of (for example, onboarding or support fees)?
Reliability & Maintenance
Reliability and ongoing maintenance are critical for any ticketing kiosk project and should be two of your primary considerations when selecting a software vendor.
- Is this a hosted solution or am I responsible for provisioning and maintaining my own servers?
- Should I expect any system downtime or maintenance periods?
- Do you offer uptime guarantees?
- How often do you generally update? Are updates pushed automatically or do I have to opt in?
- Do you publish a changelog documenting updates?
Other Potential Features
Season Ticket & Packages
Season tickets and other ticketing packages can encourage repeat visits and reward long-term loyalty while increasing your revenue per visitor.
Upsell recommendations allow you to easily promote other event offerings, like parking passes or merchandise, during the ticket sale process, increasing event revenue while streamlining your customer flow.
Timed entry tickets allow you to easily control the flow of visitors into your facility, supporting social distancing and capacity limits.
Membership & Account-Based Management
Ticketing systems that can track specific visitors through a membership or account system allow you to identify and reward your most frequent visitors.
Automated marketing features can include anything from Facebook event creation to presale email notifications.
Purchase and entry options through a guest’s mobile phone can streamline your guest flow.
Popular Ticketing Software Vendors
Founded in 2000, Etix is a full-service ticketing solution with clients in over 40 countries.
Eventbrite is a popular online ticketing platform for events of all sizes.
Event Genius is a cloud-based ticketing system with an integrated app.
Roller is a cloud-based, enterprise ticketing platform with a self-service kiosk option.
Ticketmaster is a global ticketing platform, offering a range of products and services.
Identifying the best ticket kiosk hardware
When it comes to selecting the hardware for your ticketing kiosks, the key is to look for a setup that is reliable, secure, and easy to maintain.
There are a number of factors to consider when making this decision including:
While visitor experience is often thought of primarily in terms of software, kiosk hardware considerations can have a large impact on the usability of your ticketing kiosk solution.
- Will the kiosk hardware be a good visual match with the planned location?
- What types of branding and/or other signage are available to customize this ticketing solution?
- Is your kiosk hardware ADA-compliant?
- Are your ticketing kiosks stable enough to prevent accidental tipping or wobbling during use?
- Is your kiosk hardware adjustable and/or otherwise able to accommodate visitors of varying heights?
Security & Durability
Security and durability are important for ticketing kiosk hardware to ensure the protection of customer data, prevent misuse, and protect the kiosk and its components from wear and tear.
- How is the tablet secured?
- Can the ticket kiosk be bolted to the floor/desktop or otherwise locked down?
- Does the kiosk adequately protect the device’s power supply and other cables or is it easily disconnected?
- Is unprinted ticket stock adequately secured to prevent theft?
- Are tablet ports protected to prevent tampering with the operating system or software components?
- Are the payment processing components used in your ticketing system secure and PCI-compliant?
Design & Manufacturing
Knowing the manufacturer, origin, and overall design philosophy behind your ticketing kiosk can allow you to make better decisions about who to entrust with your project’s success.
- Who designs and manufactures your ticketing kiosk hardware?
- Where is it made?
- What kind of materials are used in the construction of your ticketing kiosks?
- Are the materials used durable enough to hold up under heavy use?
- How do you make decisions about your product’s design?
- Do you offer custom design services for new integrations or form factors?
- What type of timelines should I expect for my ticket kiosks?
Functionality & Compatibility
Unless you are creating a software solution from the ground up, the choice of ticketing software will frequently dictate some hardware requirements for your project.
- Does your kiosk hardware work with the tablet I need to run my ticketing software?
- Does your kiosk hardware integrate the necessary printers, card readers, and/or scanners for my ticketing software?
- Is it possible to access the tablet’s camera if needed?
- Is the tablet enclosure radio transparent to prevent interference with WiFi and/or Bluetooth signals to the tablet?
- Is it possible to accommodate larger rolls or stacks of ticket stock?
Installation, Maintenance & Support
The last thing you want when installing or maintaining ticketing kiosk hardware are surprises. A dedicated support team can help keep your kiosks running smoothly and reliably for many years to come.
- How easy is the ticket kiosk to assemble and install?
- If necessary, can the kiosk be shipped already assembled and ready for use?
- Can I consign equipment like printers or card readers for integration prior to shipping?
- What ongoing maintenance is required?
- How difficult is it to replace ticket printing stock?
- Can I update the tablet enclosure for a new tablet or peripheral without replacing the entire kiosk?
- Is it possible to update the branding and signage if needed?
- What type of warranty do you offer on your hardware products?
- How can I contact your support team?
Kiosk Group’s ticketing hardware is a best-in-class choice because it is designed for ease of use, reliability and durability.
Our modular designs makes integration and maintenance of your ticketing kiosk both easy and cost-effective. Our ticketing kiosks are compatible with a wide range of components and peripherals, including ticket printers, card readers, and scanners, and can be used with a wide range of software solutions.
Our ticketing kiosk solutions protect your tablet or screen inside a heavy-duty, thermoplastic enclosure that is secured by a keyed lock, allowing easy access for staff while keeping the device safe.
Each enclosure is paired with a heavy, counter-balanced steel base, making it difficult to tip over the kiosk and providing a solid platform for visitor interaction.
Graphics and signage printed on-site in our professional-grade print lab highlight your branding and attract visitors to your ticketing kiosk.
Ticket printers are protected within the body of the enclosure along with any necessary cabling and ticket stock and allow easy access for staff to change out ticket paper as needed. We currently integrate with Boca’s popular Lemur X ticket printers and other integrations are available on request.
We believe that everyone should be able to use our kiosks. All of our designs meet the height and reach standards set in the latest Americans with Disabilities Act. Throughout our design process, we test with physical prototypes to ensure that our kiosks present your tablet at the right height and angle for viewing and touch interaction by a variety of users.
And we stand behind these products with a full 5-year warranty and free support to assist with any installation or technical challenges as needed.
We’re ready to start a conversation about your specific needs and how working with Kiosk Group can set your self-service ticketing project up for success.
Our rugged, modular hardware is a great fit for self-service ticketing projects. Learn more about the options we offer below.Browse kiosks
We’re here if you have a question or need something specific. Just let us know and we can help you find or create the perfect kiosk for your project.Talk to an expert
Selecting a kiosk vendor can be a big decision. We’ve highlighted some important areas to consider in our downloadable kiosk buying guide.Download Kiosk Buying Guide PDF