Scalable infrastructure ensures Ticketek website isn’t livin’ on a prayer

E-commerce business gears up for Bon Jovi online ticket sales

When Bon Jovi’s Australian concert tickets go on sale from 20 May on the Ticketek website, an elastic compute platform will allow the e-commerce site to handle expected high demand from fans clamouring to see the hair metal rockers.

Speaking at a roundtable in Sydney, Ticketek chief operating officer Dominic Teakle told media that the platform, provided by Hostworks, is very important because of the ebbs and flows of website traffic.

“We will be going on sale soon with Bon Jovi and we will get absolutely deluged with demand,” he said.

“At significant points of time throughout the day we will have high demand and we need the confidence in our supporting infrastructure to be able to scale, have elasticity and then ramp back when we don’t need to use it,” he said.

An example of the peaks in demand experienced by the website was a recent AC/DC concert, which sold out within 15 minutes.

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Ticketek also has an iPhone app for fans that can’t wait to buy tickets from their office desktop. Released in December 2012, Teakle said the app has had more than 300,0000 downloads.

“When we watch what we call `hot shows’ we see the mobile transacting far faster than the Internet or other areas,” he said.

“The ability for us to keep ahead of the mobile platform and putting a ticket in everyone’s pocket is very important to us.”

However, there are always gate crashers: Ticketek has had to deal with software bots being used to to buy multiple lots of tickets.

“Hostworks has come up with a secure and sophisticated way to keep track of these bots,” he said.

“We can’t afford to be complacent and we are constantly monitoring this problem.”

Turning to the future, he said its Android app will be out before June 2013. It is also working on a Windows Phone app.

While Ticketek does not need to deal with customer relationship management (CRM) directly, because it resells tickets on behalf of promoters, the company does have a member’s forum called MyTicketek which has 4.36 million members. These members have opted in to receive email offers about upcoming events from the company.

“The benefit we provide someone like the National Rugby League [NRL] is that we know fans not only attend rugby league matches but they also might like heavy metal concerts. The ability to cross market across the database creates the ability for our clients to attract new people,” he said.

Follow Hamish Barwick on Twitter: @HamishBarwick

Follow Computerworld Australia on Twitter: @ComputerworldAU, or take part in the Computerworld conversation on LinkedIn: Computerworld Australia

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