For online travel shoppers, the purchase journey is complex. From the inspiration, research and consideration phases to the booking phase, the process may include many twists and turns while navigating online travel information, OTA, hotel and airline sites, and more. With an understanding of the intricate online booking journey, brands can connect with travelers and influence their purchases.
The digital audience in Canada may be smaller than that in the UK and U.S., but Canadian consumers are highly engaged. Collectively, they spend 148 billion minutes per month interacting with digital content, and 70% are consuming digital travel content.
Travel is a large — and growing — sector in the United States. In 2015 alone, American travelers logged 1.7 billion trips for leisure purposes, according to the U.S. Travel Association. We know Americans are traveling, but we also wanted to know how they are consuming digital travel content, what influences their travel decisions, and how marketers can best reach and influence them.
Online travel shoppers have many choices to make as they are booking a trip, from where to go and how to get there, to what site to book on. Today, at Phocuswright 2016 in Los Angeles, we released findings from the new study, The Traveler’s Path to Purchase that we commissioned with comScore. The new study identifies trends of the American, British and Canadian online travel shopper throughout the inspiration, consideration and booking phases.
Travel purchases are rarely straightforward — research shows that shoppers looking to buy a package visit travel sites an average of 38 times prior to purchase. That’s why as travel marketers it’s essential for us to understand the traveler’s complex journey along the path to purchase.
The beauty of digital marketing is the data that can be accessed, often in real-time, to inform what is or is not working, and what customers are really interested in – which can be demonstrated by the online steps they take, such as visiting a website, clicking on an ad, considering and making purchases, and much more. The challenge then is to take those insights and retarget consumers with the most relevant messages and content to continue influencing their purchase journey.
Email may not be the new kid on the block, but email marketing remains a tried-and-true method for reaching consumers, both new and existing. In fact, email is nearly 40 times more effective than Facebook and Twitter combined when it comes to acquiring customers. What’s more, many consumers actually prefer email. A study commissioned by MarketingSherpa showed that 72% of U.S. adults would rather receive communications from companies via email as opposed to direct mail, social media, online videos or other channels.
There is no question that today’s consumers are increasingly browsing on their mobile devices. The screens-on-the-go crowd is growing, and the world is ever-connected.
Investigating every facet of the customer experience through exhaustive testing and learning is a core value across Expedia, Inc. With the scientific method as a guiding principle, our company-wide dedication to examination, analysis, and iteration underscores our dedication to create the best experience for our consumers, partners and advertisers.