Travel Talk

The Five ways of Improving the Customer Experience for Travelers

The travel and service industry underwent a massive change thanks to the travel restrictions due to the onslaught of the coronavirus pandemic.

It was one of the hardest-hit sectors as many travel agencies went out of business and were forced to shut down due to a collapse in international tourism around the globe.

The U.S travel association reports that the travel industry experienced a 42% decline in the first year of the pandemic. However, as economies worldwide loosen their travel restrictions, the tourism industry is likely to regain its past glory.

Tourism in a post-covid world

A TripAdvisor survey reports that the tourism industry will likely undergo a behavioral shift as tourists are increasingly concerned about their services’ quality, hygiene, and safety.

The hospitality industry saw a more than 10% increase in negative reviews amidst loosening restrictions.

As a result, businesses must demonstrate their sincerity, openness, and outstanding customer service to reassure customers. Developing a strong relationship with customers is essential to succeed.

Five ways of improving the customer experience for travelers

Improving customer experience is crucial for any tourism company, we’ve established that fact. But most businesses aren’t taking this notion seriously. For every business, the shift in customer behaviors will likely bring new and unique challenges.

Whether you run an Airbnb, a travel agency, or a vacation rental management company in a tourist hotspot like the Smoky Mountains, your primary goal should be to address and prioritize customer satisfaction.

Any company’s longevity and success in the travel industry are based on the quality of service they deliver to their customers.

Today we’ve put together a list of ways to improve your customer experience to gain a strong foothold in the travel industry.

1. Make your booking process simple

One of the best ways to attract customers is by making booking easier. Customers looking for vacation rentals or travel agencies prioritize businesses with simpler processes.

They are more likely to choose companies that can help them save time researching their destination, planning their schedule, and booking travel. 

Travelers value a fast and uncomplicated booking procedure, particularly those on corporate business trips. In fact, many travelers are willing to spend a little extra to have excellent service that can save them time.

Research shows that 62% of customers are prepared to pay more for a straightforward experience, with 61% of them eager to promote a business that offers an obvious value proposition and uncomplicated booking process.

2. Provide individualized experiences

Thanks to the rise of IoT and ubiquitous tech, technology has permeated every sector of society to the extent that the success of any industry in today’s hyper-connective world is dependent on it.

Businesses, especially those in the service industry, can now leverage tech to provide a customer experience that is completely tailored according to the customer’s demands and preferences.  

Improving customer experience and keeping up with the competition can be accomplished by providing a tailored customer experience.

You can consider investing in a customer relationship management application to increase your travel business’s level of personalization as it allows for a secure and structured repository for crucial customer data. A robust CRM system is vital for travel agencies that want to customize consumer experiences.

For example, if you own a travel agency and utilize CRM for travel agencies, you’ll have access to a wealth of information on your clients.

As a result of this information, you may tailor your offerings to your clients depending on their previous choices.

You can gain critical insights about a consumer by tracking their interactions with a brand using CRM software.

3. Empower your agents

Improving customer experience is the ideal solution to deal with customer dissatisfaction and negative reviews.

And the best way to go about doing that is by training and empowering your agents. To provide the best customer service possible, ensure that all your employees are adequately trained according to the industry standards.

Apart from training your customer support agents on how to deal with customers, you also need to train them on brand and product. This will enable them to adjust your business’s offering to consumers’ interests and even upsell your services. Each agent must comprehensively understand your company’s policies and procedures to provide the best possible answers to customer queries.

Empower your agents to offer consumers value-added information that can save customers time or money.

Many travel agencies are constrained in providing their clients with a wide range of packages and services.

Consequently, these agents may deliver a poor customer experience owing to their apparent limits. A satisfying customer experience results from empowered agents trained to upsell and even cross-sell your services per customer expectations.

4. Respond to customer feedback

Customer feedback is invaluable for making in-person interactions more satisfying for your customers.

Even though many businesses in the travel industry understand the significance of providing a positive client experience, many fail to consider the enormous value that consumer feedback may have.

According to a survey, many customers feel that customer feedback in the hospitality industry never reaches someone who can make a genuine impact – approximately 48% of all customers feel that their feedback gets overlooked by the management.

To gain a firm foothold in the travel and hospitality sector, not only should you solicit client feedback, but you should also not forget to inform all your customers of the modifications and improvements you’ve made, thanks to their valuable input.

5. Encourage proactive communication

For many, the thought of traveling and finding a place to stay has always been fraught with worry. Furthermore, the pandemic has made travelers more anxious than ever about their safety.

85% of travel survey respondents stated that the information they get from hotels and airlines on safety influences their travel choices.

Furthermore, 40% of respondents say travel agencies and vacation rentals aren’t doing enough to educate their customers on safety practices.

As a result, today’s vacation rental and hotel management must implement a proactive communication strategy driven by data insights on safety measures, sanitation, and sanitization.

Additionally, airlines and travel businesses must be proactive in communicating vital developments such as travel advisories, delays, and cancellations.

Likewise, companies in the travel sector should strive to fix clients’ issues as fast and effectively as possible when they contact them.

Final thoughts

Businesses in the travel industry may be experiencing a temporary period of low demand. However, companies are bound to make a comeback stronger than ever. To ensure your business is one of them, now is the perfect time for you to revamp your strategy toward customer experience. Follow our tips to ensure a surge in customer satisfaction and vacation bookings.

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