Why travel operators need to provide a digital customer experience

30 April, 2015    |    Marketing    |    Traff1k D1g1tal

According to the latest ITB World Travel Trends Report, 65% of all holidays are now booked on-line, compared with just 24% that are booked via travel agencies. Travel bookings from mobile devices are also increasing, with 20% of UK holiday-makers now booking holidays using a mobile device, according to a recent survey by Tradedoubler Insight Unit. As competition continues to increase across all digital channels, with new intermediates and portals coming on-line each week, it is becoming essential that travel operators ensure customers have the best possible experience across all channels.

Broken links, booking problems, payment issues, poor navigation and a lack of appropriate information can force customers to competitors’ sites, ultimately losing business. 

Know your customers

The smallest technical glitch or poor process design could adversely affect the on-line experience for customers, resulting in site abandonment, impeded bookings, and damage to the company’s brand. 

It is becoming imperative that travel operators collect and review information on a number of different variables such as how customers were sourced to their website, why they have abandoned a transaction, what types of content make customers buy or convert, and how visitors behave on different devices amongst other things. By analysing this data, travel operators can begin to understand customer behaviour and take the necessary steps to improve the quality of customer experience and maximise sales. Through this analysis it can also help travel companies record each customer session at the browser level and view problems at the source  - meaning they can identify complex issues that customers have a tough time describing, apply the necessary precision in investigations and eliminate educated guesses to ultimately reduce customer struggle.

Connect the dots

However, in addition to ensuring websites are in running order to ensure customers have a first-class experience when booking holidays, travel operators must make sure they can seamlessly switch between channels. Services like click-to-call, responsive websites and reserve and collect are easy to implement and enable the company to connect all the channels to provide a single, overarching, top-quality customer experience.

 

Customer satisfaction is the lifeblood of businesses. As digital channels become more widely used in the world of commerce, customers expect to be able to switch seamlessly between them, so investing in the digital experience has never been more important for travel operators.

 

For a full transcript of ITB World Travel Report

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