The latest survey from digital market research specialists, eDigitalResearch, reveals that while some travel organisations are aware of the importance of online customer analysis, many still don’t effectively gauge the online customer experience in order to drive commercial improvement and change.
With a staggering 75% of people preferring to book their holidays online according to eDigitalResearch, the internet is becoming an increasingly important vehicle for consumer engagement.
However, the latest findings reveal that 33% of travel companies don’t actively track customer opinion and an astonishing 46% stated that they have little idea whether people achieve what they set out to do on the website.
For a sector hampered by rising fuel costs and with the economic slowdown increasing the demand for online bookings, these results show a lack of online customer knowledge.
“With more people turning to the Internet to research and book their holidays, finding out how customers like to interact is the cornerstone in helping travel companies to achieve customer loyalty and sustain competitive advantage,” said head of research at eDigitalResearch, Derek Eccleston.
“A website is an extension of the brand, and the same care and attention to auditing customer perceptions should be given to this as to any other medium.”
The survey demonstrates that there is a need for better online research and evaluation so that travel companies can gain more commercial insights into how their customers interact online, what they like about the website and the general online user experience.
EDigitalResearch believes that an integrated approach to research through the use of online polls, panel surveys and rating systems can help travel companies to better understand their online customers.
To this end, it has recently rebranded to better reflect how its end-to-end research platform can offer businesses more ‘informed direction’ to help drive online change and improvement.
Since rebranding, eDigitalResearch has witnessed a trend towards businesses wanting to better engage users through holistic research.
Virgin Atlantic, CC Africa and Kuoni are currently using this approach to gain rapid customer comment and feedback on their products and services.