Best Practices

Top 6 Commerce Platforms All Major Events Need

Digital solutions have changed the way individuals and businesses interact. Specifically for event planners dealing with thousands if not tens of thousands of attendees, modern technologies empower them to turn any game, concert, or large gathering into a well-orchestrated experience.But what commerce platforms for events have become essential additions?Today, we’ll discuss some of the top digital technologies you can use to help your event run smoothly.

#1 Ticketing and Event Technology

If you’re planning on putting on an event, you’ll need to market the event and provide guests a place to sign up and attend. This is critical since in most cases, one of the largest money makers for any event is ticket sales.With registration software, you can make any event sign-up fast and pain-free.A ticketing and event platform helps you plan anything from a smaller tradeshow to a massive festival. Typically, these come with a host of customizable tools that enable users to manage every detail of the event, whether it’s promotions or registration. Other activities this may help with include:

  • Pre-planning
  • Payment acceptance
  • Lead collections
  • Attendee tracking
  • Post-event data collection

Armed with such a system, you can avoid many of the mistakes that tend to crop up with large events, particularly those caused by human error, such as data entry, following up, or processing payments. It also enables your team to be more efficient from the planning phase to actually hosting the event. Automations and integrations with other apps streamlines processes, thus reducing the busy work key players will have to handle. This then allows them to focus on the aspects of the event that require their attention and expertise.Finally, the data gathered in the run-up to and during the event makes the overall success or lack thereof much more quantifiable. The ability to measure key performance indicators provides an opportunity to see what you did right, what you did wrong, and then make necessary changes for the next event.

#2 Virtual Event Platform

Virtual event platforms enable you to host a wholly online experience. Alternatively, they provide a hybrid event, where you have a mixture of live attendees and a larger virtual audience, which is especially common for events like a product launch.Benefits of using a virtual platform to host an event include:

  • Scale – Any in-person event is naturally limited to some degree or another. There are various constraints that put a cap on the live audience. However, with a virtual event platform, there’s no limit to the number of people who attend. Even taking a hybrid approach, you can ensure that there are more participants than otherwise would be possible.
  • Increased engagement – Using a virtual event platform during a hybrid event, you can keep the online audience engaged. Viewers can watch, discuss, provide feedback, or even participate in Q&As.

Virtual networking and connection – Even if they can’t participate in person, a virtual event commerce platform will allow those watching at home to network, chat, and connect with like-minded individuals.

#3 Contactless Ordering and Payment

One of the most frustrating aspects of any major event can be the long lines for food, drinks, and merchandise. Guests don’t want to waste their time waiting to order and then pay when they could otherwise be watching a show, touring the grounds, or enjoying their day. In fact, according to an Oracle Study on “The Fan Experience:”

  • 30 minutes was the average amount of time a fan spent in line at a concession stand.
  • 45% of fans abandoned concession lines without making a purchase because the line was too long.
  • The average fan said that they would be willing to spend an additional $20 on concessions if wait times were cut in half.

Long lines are a recipe for disaster. They result in lost sales, less-than-ecstatic event attendees, and bad reviews. If the situation worsens, it could leave a sore memory for guests.So, what’s the solution to this all-too-common difficulty?A contactless ordering and payment platform like GoTab. This type of commerce platform for events empowers a team to streamline and expedite any gathering—be it a baseball game or a beer and food festival. With it, vendors can serve guests safely, efficiently, and with less staff.It all comes down to QR code technology. For example, if you were a food truck at a food and wine festival, guests could scan your unique QR code. Doing so would bring them to a digital menu that they could then peruse, place an order, and pay or even split the bill with friends. And they can do that without ever having to get in line.This benefits both attendees and vendors:

  • For event attendees – A cashless system reduces the rush to reach concessions. It takes the stress out of ordering and paying for food and drinks, reduces the headache associated with constant waiting in lines, and allows people to pre-order and pick up when their request is completed.
  • For vendors – Contactless ordering and payment make it possible to work more efficiently and with less staff. By streamlining orders and payment, personnel only have to focus on fulfillment. Also, the minimization of face-to-face contact helps improve the event’s overall safety.

#4 Social Commerce Platform

Many modern events make or break their moment due to social media marketing. Social media plays a massive role in both building a buzz in the lead-up to the day and during the event itself. A smart social media campaign can be used to:

  • Advertise the event
  • Get people to sign up
  • Provide information about the event
  • Generate hype as the event occurs
  • Add to the overall atmosphere

But managing social media can be a logistical whirlwind—whether it’s creating posts for several different platforms, setting release schedules, or interacting with the community in real-time.A social commerce platform can help with all of these things. And, equally important, it can provide data analysis that allows event coordinators to refine and optimize their social media campaigns.

#5 Website Builder

Events need a digital storefront to exist. The website for any event is the virtual home. On the surface, it contains all of the information would-be attendees might need, while also being a place to hype up the event and sell tickets. But there are other benefits as well, including:

  • Efficiency – An event website is a central hub where visitors and attendees can get all of the most recent details on what to expect. This makes it much easier for event planners to keep people engaged.
  • Analytics – The right website will provide powerful tools that make it possible to leverage all of the customer data. Armed with these insights, you can then make tweaks to marketing or how future events are run.
  • Marketing – All of your social media, content, and traditional marketing efforts will be in vain if they don’t incite action. Often, an event website acts as that CTA (call to action), especially for signups. Additionally, a website allows you to organically market via search engine optimization.

Fortunately, today, you don’t need programming skills to make a beautiful, mobile-responsive website. There are easy eCommerce platform builders that come with built-in point-of-sale integrations, which is ideal for ticketing and merchandising.

#6 Event Apps

Applications that are built specifically for an event are a powerful mobile commerce platform value-add. Done right, an app can make it easier for event-goers to sign-up, make a purchase, get into the venue, interact, network, and engage.For instance, in 2020, Coachella Music and Arts Festival made its app an integral part of the weekend experience. Festival attendees used it to:

  • Create custom schedules based on what artist was playing, when, and where
  • Activate their wristband to get into the grounds
  • Peruse the live map
  • Discover food, beverage, and merchandise options
  • Check the real-time lost & found

Now, building out a fully-functioning mobile app can be a hefty investment. But if you plan to host the event regularly, the benefits it provides may be worth the high price tag.

GoTab—The Commerce Platform Every Event Needs

Every event is different. As a result, some of these commerce platforms may be more essential than others. However, one element is certain—every major event has lines for food and beverage.That’s a problem. But it doesn’t have to be.Enter GoTab. With our contactless ordering and payment system, both event attendees and vendors benefit. Armed with this commerce platform, you can clear out lines, generate more revenue, and create a better overall experience for everyone.Want to know how GoTab can revolutionize your next major event? Try a free demo today!Sources: 

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Situated “in the heart of it all, yet tranquil enough to make you feel away from it all too,” The Limelight Hotel Snowmass offers 99 hotel rooms and 11 residences, as well as footsteps-to-gondola access in winter and summer — right in the middle of Snowmass Base Village.

The Situation

Especially over the last few years, the Limelight Hotels IT team had witnessed a significant shift to contactless technology in the hospitality industry. After evaluating friction points in the guest journey, aligning with modern technology platforms in their restaurant was determined to be an effective way to offer elevated contactless dining experiences to their guests while also evolving their technology platforms to continue to support long-term company goals. Limelight Hotel partnered with GoTab to provide an enhanced on-demand dining experience on par with the brand’s reputation for exceptional guest service.

The Solution

Reducing Staff Touch Points Without Sacrificing Guest Experience

Guests are now able to begin a tab from their room or the property’s restaurant by scanning a QR code, texting a link to friends or family members on the ski slope to add in their orders, then meeting up together at the patio or lodge to enjoy their meal and après ski festivities without interruption. By streamlining tasks like inputting orders and processing payments, this eliminates friction for hotel staff and allows them to focus on delivering renowned guest service for a memorable experience. Since partnering with GoTab, Limelight Snowmass has consistently seen higher check averages and sales.

“We found the Point of Sale platforms we were looking at offered the guest and staff limited opportunities to further reduce touch points or improve the traditional restaurant experience. The GoTab platform enabled the guest to take an active role over the flow of their experience while simultaneously reducing touch points and further streamlining restaurant operations.”Nick Giglio, Manager of Hotel IT Operations, The Little Nell Hotel Group

According to the Limelight Hotels team, some of the other platforms that were evaluated were either missing some of the pieces they were looking for, had weak customer support models, or had little willingness to develop integrations to existing hotel platforms already in place. To that end, GoTab integrated with cloud-based platform, Infor. Together, GoTab and Infor are providing dynamic solutions to support central, efficient service across hotel amenities and deliver exceptional guest experiences.

“Previously, guests would call down to the restaurant to begin an order from their room or while they were out enjoying the ski slopes. Using GoTab, guests can now place orders from anywhere on the resort, giving them the on-demand service they want without interrupting their day. GoTab empowers us to give control to the guest, reducing touch points and streamlining overall restaurant operations, making Limelight Hotel the resort of choice for Snowmass.”Nick Giglio, Manager of Hotel IT Operations, The Little Nell Hotel Group

Since introducing GoTab, The Limelight Hotel has seen a consistent level of upsells and items sold per check resulting in additional revenue capture. They have been able to maintain service levels in their restaurants during periods when there was reduced staffing available without significantly diminishing the guest experience.

The Benefits

Eliminate Phone Orders – Take Orders from the Slopes. Guests can start a tab from their room or on the mountain without interrupting the flow of their day.

Future-Proofed Technologies – Delivering elevated contactless ordering via integration with the Infor hotel management platform.

Eliminating Friction in the Guest Journey – Maintaining service levels during periods of reduced staff without diminishing the guest experience.

  • Eliminating Friction in the Guest Journey – Maintaining service levels during periods of reduced staff without diminishing the guest experience.
  • Eliminating Friction in the Guest Journey – Maintaining service levels during periods of reduced staff without diminishing the guest experience.
  • Eliminating Friction in the Guest Journey – Maintaining service levels during periods of reduced staff without diminishing the guest experience.
  • Eliminating Friction in the Guest Journey – Maintaining service levels during periods of reduced staff without diminishing the guest experience.

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