It’s one of the most critical issues for online travel sellers: turning lookers into bookers. Today’s leisure travel shoppers are a demanding group. Just persuading them to visit the online travel shop is a victory; but attracting visitors is of limited value if they don’t buy anything. It’s not enough to just have lookers. A strategic approach that breaks the customer journey into manageable chunks will yield results.
Online conversion is – in broad terms – about turning lookers into bookers. But today’s leisure shoppers have a world of online choices. It’s hard to get noticed in the first place with a majority of web display ads never even being seen.
Turning the lookers into bookers
Travel sellers need a plan to chart a safe way through the hazard-filled customer journey. An optimised online conversion strategy can provide the roadmap they need to guide their steps, helping improve click-through rates and deliver better online buying experiences that lead to more sales, more cross-selling opportunities and a better brand experience (which in turn means greater customer loyalty and more customer referrals). Along the way, the right optimised conversion strategy will let travel sellers harvest customer information they can use to improve the experience.
There are five dimensions to creating the optimal conversion strategy, and travel sellers intent on boosting their look-to-book ratios should consider them all:
- Be realistic about budget: make sure you have the appropriate budget to drive qualified traffic to your website.
- Set realistic goals: don’t think of your conversion rate as a specific goal number, but rather as an indicator of progress over time.
- Put the conversion rate into perspective: think about how it relates to traffic and booking trends, and consider the impact of seasonality and travel trends.
- Get expert help: partner with a digital agency and a technology provider to support you.
- Break the journey into bite-size chunks: set objectives and review, step by step, the processes to meet your goals.
The key to breaking the journey
This last dimension is perhaps the most important. Breaking the journey into manageable chunks means travel sellers can deploy Business Intelligence and analytical techniques to guide their decision-making. For each stage in the process, travel sellers can be taking more effective actions. It all adds up to an optimised customer journey, one that turns more prospective lookers into valuable bookers.