Hundreds of large hotel and flight chains, millions of travel agents, billions of dollars in revenue and billions of customers to handle every year. With an industry so large, things can often go wrong and there will always be scope for improvement. One of the biggest problems that the travel industry is facing currently are the bottlenecks and friction between suppliers and travel agents. So how can airlines, hotels, agencies and platforms share data with less friction? Read on to find out.
This is by far the best and most underused strategy to gain and retain customers. Personalization not only increases the conversions but also ensures loyalty from customers. Travellers expect to be treated as individuals but often their experiences are homologous and impersonal.
- Ample access to customer data
The travel industry is interdependent and all the services are connected to each other. Without customer data, personalization is not possible and vice versa. It is important for both the customer and the data intelligence to share valuable data that can be used to personalize services for the customer. This will facilitate a connected and seamless experience.
- Choice of booking
It is essential that OTAs give customers the big picture. The customers need to know all the options and realize that there will be different costs and benefits.
- Interconnection of services by OTAs
Travel agents are the glue that connect different services and link together with people. They facilitate the interconnection of what seems to be, in some ways, a fragmented set of services.
- Robust API
Most friction happens in the B2B space when there are so many middle men that data gets lost in the chaos. Perhaps, the best solution to reduce this chaos and deliver actionable insights and results is to build a robust API to communicate other systems on different platforms.
- Actionable Insights
A good platform offers cohesive, intelligible, and actionable insights that we can understand and use to change bottom-lines. It is the insights that we are missing, when we are looking too far down or too deep in verticals. We all have a lot of data. The question is – How do we surface that intelligence in a way that it is usable? How would systems talk to each other? How can this data be made available to the frontline staff? And finally, how would you leverage that data with the help of your partners to make sure there is relevance across those touch points?
- Point-of-sale conversation with the customer
What most brands fail to understand is that it is imperative to know the customer very well. And the best way is to ask them. Asking questions about their preferences at point-of-sale or asking for feedback is crucial and will likely offer data that can be used to learn the customer and hence offer personalized deals increasing their probability of buying from you by tenfold.
What do you think about the article? Did we miss any point? Is there a better way to handle the complexities we are facing today in the travel industry? We would like to know your thoughts. Drop a comment in the comments section below and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Linkedin.