How to price tickets for online shows: everything you need to know

Author: Emily Ingram, Co-Founder and CEO of OnJam.

Selling tickets to online concerts or shows can seem daunting at first. Will people pay for a ticket? How much will they pay? How should I set the right price for my target audience?

At OnJam, we specialise in ticketed online shows: live-streams, recorded broadcasts and pay-per-view video on demand.

Here is what we have learnt after selling over 1,800 tickets since launching OnJam six weeks ago.

1. The average price of a ticket for an online show is £11.49 (or $15.76).

People are willing to pay for tickets to online shows. On the whole, we see higher average prices per ticket for livestreams and recorded broadcasts than videos on demand.

When you are thinking about the price of your tickets, consider the perceived ‘value’ of what you’re offering to your prospective audience members. This might include the length of the show, calibre of performers, type of venue, sound and picture quality, whether it’s a new and previously unseen show, or supporting a worthy cause. This is specific to every show but worth considering carefully.

The average ticket price on OnJam is £11.49 but individual prices range from £5 to £50. At the end of the day, audience members will pay for something they feel is good value.

2. Consider offering multiple types of tickets at different prices.

Many of our artists and groups offer 3 to 5 different types of tickets for each show. Broadly, there are two options in this type of pricing.

The first option is to offer your audience a ‘choose your price’ option.

Depending on their financial situation or how much they want to support the artists, audience members may choose a lower or higher price. Most artists choose to offer 3 or 4 options. For example, ‘standard ticket’, ‘feeling generous’ (slightly higher price) and ‘feeling very generous’ (higher price again).

The second option is to offer tickets that provide different benefits. This allows your biggest fans and supporters to get something ‘extra’ for their money.

In this scenario, artists or groups typically offer 3 to 5 options. There is always a ‘standard ticket’ (just access to the online show). The other tickets with higher prices might include a CD or printed programme or merchandise, or access to an exclusive post-show or pre-show party.

With OnJam, you can call your ticket options whatever you want. Be creative! Always remember to clarify the differences between each type of ticket in the description.

3. Series and bundles can be an attractive way to showcase your best work.

If you have multiple shows, consider grouping them into a series and offering access as a bundle. If you have a long show (more than an hour long), consider whether it could be broken into segments and offered as a series.

People will still buy tickets to the individual shows, but we often see artists’ biggest supporters buying access to the whole set.

Price your series so that it is more economical to buy the bundle than each show individually. The optimal discount is around 20% but you should offer what feels right for you.

As with individual show tickets, it can be a good idea to offer multiple price options for series. Don’t sell yourself short!

4. Discount codes are a powerful tool.

Discount codes or promotions can be very effective. To maximise their impact, think carefully about when and how you use them.

Reward your most loyal audience members. Offer a special discount that’s only valid for 24 hours, or to the first 50 people who use the code. OnJam’s artist dashboard offers easy tools to help you manage your discounts.

In conclusion

Pricing can be tricky. We’ve given you some pointers above but every show is different.

Don’t be afraid to experiment, and keep refining as you go. Be realistic about the value of your show and observe how your audience behaves. If you decide to give your audience multiple options for tickets and prices, notice which options are the most popular. And lastly, never sell yourself short!