Travel Marketing the new digital marketing service from specialists Speedie Consultants Limited – and aimed at hotels, tourist boards and online travel agents has published their first report into the online buying habits of holiday makers.
The survey reveals that:
• 90% of people book a holiday online
• More than three-quarters (78%) primarily use an online travel comparison site when booking a holiday
• An almost equal amount of people then use either a travel operator’s website or book directly with a hotel (33% and 34% respectively).
When asked what attracted them to booking a particular hotel when looking at a website:
• 78% said both the description and images were equally important
• Over a quarter (27%) said that watching a video of an hotel helped with the decision to book
• 18% already knew where they wanted to stay
• Nearly one in ten (9%) use online reviews to help them make a decision.
The respondents were also asked: Do you tend to book optional extras at the same time?
• 40% book airport transfers
• 28% book airport parking
• 24% buy their travel insurance at the same time
• 22% buy tickets for attractions
• Over one in five (21%) book a hire car.
Of the people who don’t book their holidays online:
• Nearly a third (32%) found a hotel’s website too hard to navigate
• 20% are worried about the security of a website
• Almost one in five (18%) said that the hotel they want to stay at has no online booking facility
• Some hotels do not have the facility to book a disabled room online.
Commenting on the study, Jason Hulott, Director from Speedie Consultants, says: “While we anticipated that the majority of people go online to book a holiday, we were surprised that the amount is so high. It goes to show that the travel industry has the trust of the consumer.
“That said, there were a number of opportunities highlighted that independent hotels and smaller agents could and should be using to grow their business.
“The study also showed there were a number of ancillary products that holidaymakers would buy at the same time as booking their holiday. So the advice we recommend is for businesses to take full advantage and offer other non-core products to increase revenues at point of sale.”