Every second, someone somewhere books a travel online, either for work or leisure. To do so, he or she will probably google the destination to get some information, buy a plane ticket, find an accomodation and, sometimes, rent a car. Once back, that same person might as well post some ratings or reviews. Each of these online transactions generates data, which keeps accumulating and growing.
These hundreds of terabytes of data are driving the evolution of the travel industry. Indeed, state-of-the-art technologies, such as AI and machine-learning, allow companies to extract, analyze and use this huge chunk of data to get better insights and, eventually, competitive advantage.
This is particularly critical today, as consumers’ behaviour has evolved a lot. People tend to have higher than ever expectations concerning the way they interact with brands and firms. They ask for more personalized experiences and want the information they need to be easily accessible.
The travel industry has been particularly influenced by the evolution of modern consumers. Travelers’ decisions, especially when made by millennials, are more and more impulsive. Over the last two years, in the US, travel-related searches for “today” and “tonight” on mobile have increased by 150%.
As a result, online travel companies now have to focus their efforts on anticipating the customers’ needs and being able to offer their services at the right time, right place and to the right target.
Successful businesses are using big data to achieve that. However, not all data is relevant or worth structuring, so businesses must first identify where to focus their efforts. 70% of travel companies currently struggle with the amount and quality of data they have access to. Only 30% gather third-party data, and 15% use free text data. As a result more than 40% of customers’ requests become lost sales due to lack of response. Clearly, a deeper understanding of requests data would have a profound impact on the revenue of travel companies.
Requests data helps travel companies better understand their offer, their distribution system and the demand they actually face, instead of the one they think they face. It allows companies to identify patterns in consumer behaviour, which can be used to make better predictions about a customer’s needs and preferences, thus enabling a more unique and personalized type of offer. In a nutshell, requests data allows companies to improve their customer experience and detect new sales opportunities.
Collecting, analyzing and using requests data requires companies to equip themselves with the appropriate tools, namely a smart device for predictive analytics. Datumize recently unveiled its latest product, Datumize L2B Advanced Analytics, which is a non-intrusive software as a service specifically developed for the travel industry. This kind of tool empowers travel operators to be proactive in regard of their customers’ wants and needs and to tailor their offers accordingly, something companies cannot afford to ignore or they will put their survival at risk.