Ticket sales are starting to see a dramatic decline as COVID restriction uncertainty sweeps through the UK, and cases of the Omicron variant of the virus continue to skyrocket.
Events discovery platform Skiddle reported that ticket sales are “now down 26% week on week,” and just this week alone saw a huge dip in sales for New Year's Eve events.
“I think it’s to do with the uncertainty around restrictions, over the last two years everyone’s been buying tickets and shows have been unexpectedly cancelled. I think people are just holding off until they know exactly what’s going on,” says Skiddle’s marketing director, Jamie Scahill.
Jamie also told Mixmag that “it’s been alright for the past couple of weeks, but the uncertainty has just crept in. People don’t want to go out and get infected before Christmas.
“Obviously New Year's Eve is huge for us, so we’ll see how that pans out over the next few weeks,” he added.
Although it’s hard to tell whether this dip in sales is more directly to do with the rise in cases or the ongoing uncertainty over a potential lockdown, The Guardian found just last week that there have been a huge number of no-shows to ticketed events, with some only reaching 60% of ticket sale capacity.
Sacha Lord, Parklife and Warehouse Project head honcho told The Guardian that “the knock-on effects of this are phenomenal”, while four in ten ticketholders aren’t turning up to live shows.
Analytics company Purple Seven recently launched an in-depth analysis into the rise and fall of ticket sales in 2021 and argued that despite a dramatic increase in the second half of the year, celebration could be premature as sales begin to plummet.
Compiling data from 270 venues in the UK, Purple Seven also found that venues including concert halls and small-scale clubs failed to reach the same revenue that they had done two years prior in the same month - November 2019 - just a few months ahead of the pandemic.
Despite a worrying dip in sales, Jamie tells us that live music has thrived in 2021, and Skiddle are looking forward to another great one in 2022. “We’ve had an amazing year, generally the busiest in 21 years.”
Gemma Ross is Mixmag's Digital Intern, follow her on Twitter