When fans buy tickets to a concert or sporting event online, they typically are blindly choosing their seats, with no regard to what their view will actually look like. RateYourSeats.com, a secondary ticketing site, aims to change the norm and improve the ticket buying experience with new fan-forward 360º seat views.
RateYourSeats, which was founded back in 2010, embraced this technology by utilizing the VR framework A-frame and was able to incorporate user movement into the 360º photo experience. While RateYourSeats is not the first to implement this technology, their product is the only seat view photo option that is immersive and interactive regardless of the browser or device utilized. Unlike StubHub and SeatGeek’s 3D stadium viewing tools, RateYourSeats’ images were taken during live events.
“As far as our analysts can tell, no other 360º stadium seat view product provides as rich an experience or works as seamlessly as ours does,” RateYourSeats founder and CEO Keith Hanson said in the release. “StubHub 360º VR views utilize 3D stadium imagery, compiled from computer-generated images. Our 360º Seat View Photos paint more complex, nuanced and therefore more useful pictures–our trained stadium researchers captured live, in-game images. Similarly, StubHub’s product lacks the interactive features and seamless, cross-device functionality our 360º Interactive Seat View Photos have.”
The site recently announced that fans can access its interactive seat view photos for all 30 Major League Baseball stadiums. With the visual tool, users can see exactly what their seat view will look like – from any angle of the stadium. RateYourSeats founder and CEO Keith Hanson explained in the release that seat selection can be intimidating, especially for fans who do not regularly attend live events, raising a risk-factor in the ticket buying process.
“While all of RateYourSeats.com’s tools have been built to improve the ticket-buying experience, Interactive 360º Seat View Photos are poised to level the playing field for infrequent venue attendees,” Hanson said. “Fans can see what seats and seat views look like with extreme detail—including size, padding and available legroom—as well as accurately judge for themselves distance to the closest hot dog stand and the amount of shade and cover to be expected.”
Nick Hendricks, RateYourSeats’ Marketing Manager, told TicketNews that the ability to see seats early in the ticket buying process can help fans not only see what deals are available to them, but can also help concerns relating to comfort and concession options. He noted that this information, along with RateYourSeats’ other free, premium seat selection tools like SeatScore™ and Shade and Cover Seat Finder, “empowers fans to intelligently navigate the complicated and obtuse field of ticket inventory across a variety of sites that often fail to provide useful data about a particular seat or ticket pairing in a UX-friendly way.”
RateYourSeats is up against a handful of competitive secondary ticketing sites, but Hendricks believes that fans should buy tickets through their site “to support a fan-friendly enterprise dedicated to making the industry less about ticket prices and more about the end-to-end live event experience.”
“At RateYourSeats.com, we believe that a truly fulfilling fan experience begins with the planning process and can continue after the event itself,” Hendricks said. “In regards to the latter, we solicit reviews and photos from event attendees, and post these verified experiences to our site. In this way, fans can pay it forward to other fans and actively participate in a community centered on enjoying live entertainment.”
The RateYourSeats team plans to roll out addition 360º Interactive Seat View Photos at arenas in Illinois and New York in the future, Hendricks notes, and have begun collecting content to help ticket buyers enhance their seat selection prior to purchase. Eventually, the company hopes to implement these experiences to a large variety of sports and concert events.
For more information, visit RateYourSeats.com.