Does your business have its finger on the pulse?
13th May 2015
From researching new product supply to understanding the buying trends of consumers, staying abreast of industry developments is crucial to success in the travel sector.
But beyond the way your own travel technology works, the speed at which the variables – such as SEO and PPC – are moving, means keeping your finger on the pulse has never been more important.
Looking beyond the pale
With over 49 per cent of holidays booked online as of 2013, the online travel industry is in as great a shape as ever. As traffic levels for online holiday bookings remain healthy across a broad age range, many OTAs are enjoying a growing customer base.
Yet what really lies at the heart of growth in a competitive online industry?
The way your system works and the functionality you possess are both vital to online growth. But as important as it is to ensure your website is scalable and your product is flexibly sourced, it’s equally important to understand the other factors that are controlling success. With a host of digital variables determining when, where and who visits your site, OTAs must look beyond the merits of their own system.
The digital domain: a world that never stops
Although new advances in travel system technology can take months to be implemented, the economics of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and Pay per Click (PPC) advertising are changing all the time.
Judging by the way we search online and the devices we’re using it’s clear to see that the digital world is evolving on almost a daily basis. So if you’ve taken your eye off the ball, the knock-on effects for your website could be costly.
How so? Consider the way these digital variables influence how people interact with your site:
- SEO Search engine optimisation plays a key role in helping your site appear more visible in organic search. A continuously evolving process rather than an exact science, SEO is vital in helping your site attract relevant users to your product offering.
- PPC Pay per Click/Paid Search advertising allows your site to guarantee a presence in front of its target audience on search results for a desired phrase/keyword. Similarly to SEO, the practises involved in maintaining an effective campaign are ongoing and require time and research to maximise return.
- Mobile platforms More of us than ever before are using smartphones and tablets to book holidays – with one in five of us booking a holiday abroad using these devices, it’s important your site functions as well on a tablet as it does on a latptop.
Why digital matters
If you can’t be innovative with your website and find solutions to these changing digital variables, your operations may be left behind.
With changes in SEO and mobile development occurring so regularly, it’s imperative your business and its web presence are able to quickly adapt to change.
From tweaking on-site content in order to become more search engine friendly, to adding responsive design to improve the user experience of your site on tablets, flexibility is hugely important. OTAs must have a system that’s able to adapt to the changing digital world – as well as the foresight to be able to make these changes.
Staying ahead of the competition in today’s online travel sector requires more than just a good understanding of what you’re up against – it requires knowledge of everything from how people are finding your site to the handsets they’re using to do so.
A little bit of knowledge can go a very long way. So make sure you give yourself the time to keep up-to-date with digital change.