How we modernised the e-commerce experience for one of the UK's largest theatre companies


UI/UX, AWS, Vercel, Contentful

Alan Hughes


"Their team is extremely talented and knows exactly what they’re doing. Instil has been extremely helpful throughout this process. Instil has helped build a culture in our organizational systems that has enhanced how we work."

Trafalgar Tickets is one of the UK's leading theatre companies. They own and operate dozens of the theatres across the country, running everything from big West End shows to small comedy acts in regional venues.

In 2023, Trafalgar approached Instil to fast-track the development of their new e-commerce website. Trafalgar’s ask was straightforward - to redesign the e-commerce experience across all their theatre websites and to guide visitors through a successful, seamless purchase journey in less than 4 months.


Many of Trafalgar's existing theatre websites had been acquired (through acquisition) rather than built by Trafalgar. Over time, the websites had become increasingly disjointed and hard to maintain, leading to quality issues and user experience inconsistencies that impacted the purchase journey and ticket sales.

Recognising the need to fix these problems but lacking the in-house expertise to deliver a modernisation program at pace, Trafalgar turned to Instil for help. So, what did we do?

  • Assembled a high-calibre team of designers and engineers to re-design the user experience and cloud infrastructure from the ground up.

  • Developed a new design system that can be tailored for each theatre website, allowing theatres to maintain their individual brand identity whilst ensuring consistency across all the sites.

  • Defined a cloud-native architecture using AWS Serverless with Vercel and Contentful to help accelerate time-to-market by optimising software and content delivery workflows.

  • Built the new frontend using Next.js to dramatically improve website performance and SEO.

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Working in close collaboration with the Trafalgar team, we were able to go from a standing start to full launch of multiple sites in under 4 months. The results have been transformative for Trafalgar:

  • Improved user experience and website performance, driving greater customer satisfaction and leading to a 30% increase in online ticket conversions.

  • Increased cost efficiencies made possible by adopting a modern cloud-native architecture.

  • Improved ​SEO optimisations enabling individual sites to maintain their #1 Google ranking.

  • Complete backend integration enabling events to be publicised across multiple sites, helping drive further sales.

Trafalgar Tickets’ leadership team has been extremely satisfied with Instil's work. As their CTO Alan Hughes said of the engagement:

Their team is extremely talented and knows exactly what they're doing. Instil has been extremely helpful throughout this process. Trust the Instil team; if you let them solve the problem through their processes, you'll be successful.

Alan Hughes (CTO Trafalgar)

Instil is thrilled to have played a pivotal role in Trafalgar Tickets’ application modernisation, and we look forward to continuing to support their ongoing success.