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Meeting with CVPA Regarding Tracking Ticket Sales on Tickets.com

CVPA uses tickets.com to sell tickets to performances at their venues (Center for the Arts and Hylton Center).

With the help of tickets.com, we have previously been able to set-up GTM on the relevant tickets.com pages so that we can track them.

Now we are specifically trying to track the purchase process – which starts on one of the venue websites and ends on tickets.com – to track conversions. It’s also important that we are able to set-up cross domain tracking so that we can see which marketing campaigns driving traffic to the venue websites end-up resulting in more ticket sales.

We ran through the ticket purchase process to assess how we could set-up tracking in GTM to identify conversions.

We ran into a few issues:

1) Long page load time on cfa.gmu.edu.

Sending the initial page view on the CFA website takes about 6 seconds, which means quick clicks result in page views not being tracked.

2) Cross domain tracking was not working between cfa.calendar.gmu.edu and tickets.com.

This was corrected by adding tickets.com to the auto-link domains list in the cfa.calendar.gmu.edu GTM container.

3) Tickets.com uses two domains in the ticket purchase process.

Tickets.com uses purchase.tickets.com and onsale.tickets.com to sell tickets. The GTM container used on tickets.com is set-up to only recognize one domain as being legitimate for tracking, so later pageviews from onsale.tickets.com are not being tracked. This can be fixed by modifying the domain name validation trigger in the GTM container.

4) The URL does not change on tickets.com when the ticket purchase process is completed.

Since we can’t identify the completion of the purchase process by a specific URL, we discussed other options to determine if the purchase process has completed. For example, we may be able to scrape the heading on the confirmation page to determine if the user has reached the confirmation page. However later research determined that Capacity Interactive, which is helping CVPA with Facebook tracking, had previously worked with tickets.com developers to push data about the ticket purchase process to GTM’s data layer. We should be able to access this data to determine when the purchase process is complete and get additional information about what was purchased, etc.

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