Three Things an Online Travel Agency Should Know About Their Customers
While building great products for online travel agencies here at tavisca, we always have long discussions and debates internally, as well as with our partner OTAs, to arrive at a conclusion about what is more important for customers. We keep talking about cutting-edge features and the points that can result in a WOW experience for customers.
Today, while placing an order for Pizza, I had an experience that led me to writing this blog and talk about how various aspects of a website play a crucial role in the customer’s buying decisions. What are the key factors that make a difference for a website while customers are placing an order? Beyond the USP of your product offering, what are those few essential factors that are equally important for everyone, irrespective of your business strategy, market, and customer base? With all these points in mind, I decided to write a blog about what a Travel Agency should know about customer behavior.
Easy Access to all Information
Nowadays, the customer wants to know everything about the product: why should I buy this product and not the other one, what the product is all about, and what’s in it for me?
Let me put this across with a practical example. When I was purchasing a poker set last year, I was so keen to check almost everything in the product: the design, color of the box, number of coins and that too in all views, in & out. So just checking for the number of coins (300 or 500) was not enough for me to place an order with the website.
Reviews and Ratings
Reviews have been one of the most crucial reference points while making any decision. People don’t just go by what you say or write on your website, they always check for feedback. How many times have you planned to watch a movie without reading its reviews? Reviews can be online or in person. In addition to the overall feedback and rating, people do check the feedback for the product specifications. The most common example is, if I want to buy a car and my primary factor in deciding which car to buy is the mileage, I will always check with my friends who have the same car and inquire about the actual mileage, even if this information is part of the product specification on the website.
Reviews from friends and their family matter a lot more than any other online reviews. Any feedback, good or bad, from their network has much more weightage than any other reviews available on an online portal. Social media acts as the most powerful medium in spreading the word. People do share anything they like or dislike on Facebook. Your website should have an option to share any of your cool product feedback easily on social media so that you get additional customers.
Quick & Simple
In today’s fast-paced world, people want to do everything quickly. Every small thing counts when it comes to the user experience, and part of that is allowing people to do things instantly. I wanted to order a pizza from an online vendor today, but eventually I ended up on another website because there was no need for me to create an account and then order. I could easily log on using my Facebook credentials, and I could complete my order in just a few clicks.
The same experience is true for travel websites. Your booking process should be simple, quick and at the same time, customers should be able to explore, see all the required information, and spend the time they want as well.
This aspect of being quick speaks for the performance of your website. Customers don’t like to wait for results. Specifically in the travel domain, when you connect with multiple suppliers to fetch and show results, keeping the wait period to a minimum is challenging and at the same time important to ensure that you don’t lose your customer’s interest in your website.
To do well in this competitive industry, you must ensure that you have these three basic points covered. Customers nowadays are not only conscious about what they want. They are well-versed as to where and how to get what they want. Remember, customers want everything now, in the very moment, fast and easy. Catering to this very basic need of theirs might make the Retention Monster stay away and let your loyal affiliates and customers stay loyal.