Ticketmaster’s Smart Queue Is Stemming the Tide of Bot Abuse

Over the past few years, ticket bots have reached plague-like proportions and made it increasingly difficult for fans to purchase tickets at prices set by the artist. In response, we radically transformed the ticket shopping experience earlier this year with the introduction of Ticketmaster Smart Queue. Since its full-scale roll out, this cutting-edge solution has proven to be the most effective way to sell tickets for high-demand events, blocking over 13 billion bots on over 17K events and counting.

Instead of the historical first-come-first-served “race” approach to getting tickets, which ultimately favored automated software (i.e., bots), Smart Queue captures demand and orders it into a virtual queue that separates fans from bots. Fans are then metered into an Interactive Seat Maps (ISM) where they can easily find and choose their seats.

Smart Queue has not only reduced bots’ impact on onsales, but it has also dramatically improved the efficiency of high demand onsales. With this technology, artists are able to sell more tickets faster, in a high demand period, than ever before – enabling sales of up to 1K tickets per minute. Moreover, with ISM’s now becoming a standard feature of high demand onsales, average tickets per order has risen by 20 percent from 2.7 to 3.2 tickets per order. This is the first time in decades we’ve seen this metric change, and it’s attributable to the convenience and ease of use of ISMs.

Smart Queue is currently powering all high-demand onsales:

  • 29M+ fans have gone through Smart Queue, to date
  • 75% of purchasers prefer the Interactive Seat Maps (ISM)
  • 52% increase in sales conversion with ISM experience
  • 20% revenue increases due to fans up-selling themselves on the Interactive Seat Maps


How the Smart Queue works:

          1. Fans may enter the virtual waiting room 14 minutes prior to the onsale and will be required to sign in. Fans may be asked to participate in a phone confirmation.
          2. When the onsale begins waiting fans are assigned a position in the Smart Queue.
          3. Entering the event page, fans are admitted to the Interactive Seat Map at a variable rate designed to maximize sell-through.
          4. Smooth shopping experience – fans choose their own seats and check out.