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November 3, 2019

Statistics: How to Deal with No-Show Rates

Event Statistics and Guest Solutions

How many registrations have already been received? Who canceled? How many accompanying persons have been registered? And what is the no-show rate? A successful event always includes the observation and evaluation of the individual process steps. Statistics collect and visualize the data collected during event planning.

Guest management, in particular, generates a useful data set that facilitates and supports the work of event planners. With AirLST, you always have the most important statistics about your event in view: statistics are displayed directly above the guest list. After sending your invitations, you can see, for example, how many of your messages could not be delivered. You can also see why the delivery was unsuccessful so that you can intervene to regulate it.

The statistics provide a quick overview of essential figures and processes that you can use to adjust your project. If the response rate during the invitation process is low, you can send an additional reminder, for example. Even after the event, the collected statistics are the basis for a comprehensive evaluation of the event.

Bear No-Show Rates in Mind

In particular, the no-show rate should be carefully evaluated with a view to future events. This rate includes invitees who do not attend your event. This does not mean those who cancel or never respond, but those who accept and despite this never check-in.

There are many reasons for no-shows, and a high no-show rate damages the event in the long run. Empty seats do not make a good impression on guests, potential guests may have been unnecessarily canceled, or the catering could have been calculated less extensively. The effects of a high no-show rate should not be underestimated. It is, therefore, essential to look at the factors that can be influenced and to remedy them.

Reasons for and Remedies Against High No-Show Rates

The highest no-show rate is for events that do not cost admission. Many guests register here and then decide spontaneously whether they really want to go. About free events, no-show rates of between 40 and 60% are spoken of. The two apparent remedies are against it: Overbooking and entrance fees.

  • In the case of overbooking, organizers calculate in advance how many people they do not expect despite registration and allocate correspondingly more seats. As long as the overbooking is kept within reasonable limits, this is a sensible means of compensating no-show guests. It becomes complicated with events, which calculate accurately on the attendees because there are, for example, fixed seats. The better the event planners know their project, the easier it is to calculate overbooking. This method is therefore particularly suitable for regular, recurring events at which the target audience is known and for which experience values are available.
  • It is easy to explain why ticket prices reduce the no-show rate. If people have paid for an event, the value of the event increases, and it becomes obligatory. While free events are classified as optional, paid events are only canceled for good reasons. Besides, in such cases, tickets may be passed on to colleagues, friends, or family in order not to expire, and the cancellation rate increases, so that the organizers can work with waiting lists and balance it out.

Further reasons for high no-show rates are the accessibility of the event location, the target group, the weather, or competitive events.

  • If the event location is poorly connected or in an unattractive district, the no-show rate increases immensely. A departure for an event spontaneously seems too elaborate or uncomfortable to the guests, other offers become more attractive. Therefore, when choosing an event location, be aware that it is connected to public transport, or provide excellent parking facilities.
  • The weather can be too good or too bad. This is probably the most unpredictable factor for event managers. In summer, the best weather keeps people at the lake longer than initially planned, and a picnic in the park is spontaneously more attractive than an indoor event. At the same time, most people consider very carefully whether they should go outside again in the pouring rain or whether woolen blankets and sofas are not the more tempting options. Except for outdoor options in good weather, the weather and the reaction of the guests to it can hardly be influenced.
  • The target group also plays a role in the no-show rate, so the rate decreases for business events and increases for leisure events. The reasons are obvious, professional events are mandatory for employers, influence business or career issues, so they are only canceled for good reasons and even less often without feedback to the organizer.
  • Competitive events can spontaneously withdraw guests because, for example, their circle of friends prefers the other activity and pulls the guest along, or simply because the location of the different event is more favorable and the program is too similar. That's why it is always worth to check the calendar and choose a date carefully.

The collection of statistics, therefore, plays a decisive role in event planning to make short-term adjustments and optimize processes in the long term.


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