UK Consumers Increasingly Plan and Book Travel Digitally, Smartphones Experience Largest Gains in Use
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwired - Oct 12, 2016) - UK travellers are using digital devices more than ever before, increasing their use of smartphones, computers, and tablets for researching travel options and purchasing flights and hotel rooms. In fact, a majority of consumers -- 51% -- regularly use two or more devices for planning and booking trips, according to a new survey conducted by Signal, a global leader in real-time, people-based marketing.
The survey of 2,000 U.K. consumers sheds light on travel planning and booking patterns in a multi-device world, suggesting how travel suppliers can create better cross-channel experiences to engage always-on travellers and increase conversions and loyalty. Key findings include:
· The future of travel planning and booking is increasingly mobile.
The vast majority of consumers who have taken a trip in the past year planned (83%) and booked (74%) their travel using a computer, tablet or smartphone. Mobile devices are especially gaining in popularity as travellers are using their smartphones for both planning (36%) and booking (42%) airline tickets and hotel rooms more frequently than they did a year ago. This is compared to just a 15% increase in desktop use.
· Mobile-loving Millennials drive the trend.
Desktop is still the device of choice for planning (52%) and booking (46%), but Millennials (ages 18-34) are propelling the mobile revolution, as 48% planned travel with their smartphone in the last year. This figure drops considerably -- to 28% -- even when jumping only to the 35-44 age bracket. Younger generations are also more likely to use multiple devices for travel planning and booking, with 55% of Millennials reporting that they use more than one device, compared to only 21% of those ages 65-74.
· Travellers want individualised experiences.
Consumers crave a tailored travel booking experience (22%) and special offers which are bespoke to them (22%). Millennials are especially demanding of a personalised experience, with 29% of people ages 18-34 saying they most desire a booking experience that is customised to their needs and preferences.
"Travellers rely on digital devices more than they ever have. They're using multiple screens to compare prices, book tickets and accommodations, and even make upgrades or additional purchases after they book. This puts pressure on travel suppliers to recognise travellers as they move across devices, and create seamless, one-to-one experiences -- pressure that will only increase in a future driven by the mobile-first generation," said Neil Joyce, SVP, Americas, UK & EMEA, Signal. "However, travel marketers have a huge opportunity to use the rich customer data at their fingertips to deliver meaningful, relevant experiences everywhere consumers interact."
The survey also uncovered important insights for travel suppliers looking to understand the varying preferences of business and leisure travellers. For example, tablet use is most prevalent among on-the-go business travellers, who rely on these devices more frequently than their leisure counterparts to plan (30% versus 21%) and book (31% versus 14%). They're also increasingly likely to make purchases on tablets: nearly half (46%) used their tablets more often for booking travel in the last year, while just 1 in 4 of leisure travellers said the same.
To provide the best planning and booking experiences, Signal recommends travel marketers consider the following strategies:
· Create a single view of each customer to understand their cross-device journey. From the login registration on websites and mobile apps to information from frequent traveller programmes, travel suppliers have a significant amount of first-party data at their disposal. By unifying all of that rich data into a cohesive customer view, marketers will be well-positioned to understand each individual and deliver a seamless experience whether they're planning on their tablets, booking on their desktop, or upgrading their reservation post-booking.
· Be a resource to travellers by delivering simplicity.
When it comes to ways that travel suppliers can improve the customer experience, travellers are looking for simplicity: 39% said that easy-to-use airline and hotel websites and apps is the thing they desire most from such companies. Given that over one-quarter (26%) of travellers use airline and hotel websites to plan their trips, efforts to simplify the online experience could drive customers to supplier websites even more frequently.
· Use profile data to deliver the personalisation and relevance travellers want. By linking data to customer profiles that persist over time and get richer with every interaction, travel suppliers can provide the most relevant messages in real time and engage in ongoing, cross-channel conversations to build brand loyalty.
To learn more about Signal and capabilities needed to deliver seamless cross-device experiences, visit www.signal.co.
Signal is a global leader in real-time, people-based marketing. With one platform, Signal's integrated technology combines data collection, persistent identification, data onboarding and media activation for real-time cross-channel engagement. By leveraging Signal's platform, brands and publishers gain immediate knowledge of buyers, access to high quality audiences and a simplified activation process to engage consumers within minutes of recognition.
Today, Signal's technology runs on more than 45,000 digital properties in 158 countries. The platform facilitates billions of data requests monthly, supporting top brands around the world that generate more than $1.5 trillion in commerce, including Allstate, Audi, Crate & Barrel, DeVry University, GAP, JetBlue Airways, Macy's, 1-800-Flowers.com, Starcom MediaVest Group, Starwood Hotels and Resorts, and many more.
Signal has been recognised with numerous awards and honors, including being named one of the fastest growing companies on the 2015 and 2016 Inc. 500 lists. Visit www.signal.co to learn more and follow Signal on LinkedIn and Twitter.
This information is provided by RNS