Online Booking Engines Need To Be Mobile Ready

Online Booking Engines Need To Be Mobile Ready

It’s no secret that today’s consumer uses their smart phone for just about everything and it’s estimated that within the next two years there will be over 8 billion handheld, mobile ready devices in use globally. The availability of mobile applications has undoubtedly helped transform the frequency and manner these devices are used. The variety of different mobile ready technology, app stores and high speed internet connections available today have only helped increase consumer use of mobile devices. Whether making their own travel arrangements or purchasing groceries, it seems like consumers can and do buy just about anything online today.

The move to mobile by consumers is forcing many companies to consider a mobile strategy for their business while maintaining their traditional brick & mortar operation and online business via their website. However, there are different ways to approach developing a mobile web presence to consider. Some choose to use responsive technology when designing their mobile booking engine, while others may decide to use a dedicated Mobile App for their business.

There are several factors to consider when evaluating whether to use mobile ready responsive technology verses a dedicated mobile App. Websites are often designed to be used on large screens that are found on laptop computers and many do not consider how the application will appear to a consumer using a mobile device. Traditional website applications can be difficult to read or navigate through and requiring a consumer to zoom in or resize their screen to use the application. One solution for companies looking for a mobile booking engine is a mobile ready website connected to an online booking engine that is built using innovative responsive technology that automatically adjusts the screen size and layout to fit the type of device being used.

Dedicated mobile Apps are also becoming more popular, allowing an application to be accessed by any device with a web browser. The benefits of a dedicated mobile App can be more than just combining the power and versatility of an online booking engine with the ease and accessibility of a handheld device.

Some of the advantages of using Responsive technology when designing your website include a single application built to run across all devices, regardless of screen size. This can reduce maintenance costs by avoiding the need to maintain several versions of an application while providing a better user experience for your customers. For instance, destination maps may be a critical tool when using a hotel booking engine to research and book a hotel room. These destination map applications are usually image heavy and may require zooming in or resizing the screen. This is another good example of why you should consider a hotel booking engine that built using innovative responsive technology.

To create the best user experience possible, you need to consider that today’s consumer may start researching their travel arrangements using a handheld device but complete their purchase online using a tablet or laptop. Differences in these two approaches provide each with inherent advantages as well as disadvantages. The key to success is finding a technology partner with the solutions that best fit your business.

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Drive Hotel Booking Through Innovation

Drive Hotel Booking Through Innovation

Travel Technology providers were one of the pioneers in online commerce and a critical factor to the success of today’s online travel business worldwide. The most innovative and comprehensive online travel solutions available in the market today evolved through years of collaboration with travel agents and travel suppliers. Engaging all of the parties involved in the selling process during an application’s design phase and using innovative, state of the art technology are key when developing the best online booking solutions.

For example, a hotel reservation system should be designed to automate processes and reduce time and effort required to research and complete a hotel booking. It should provide live, up to date pricing and availability using live connections where ever possible. And with so many hotel options available, both travel agents and consumers appreciate solutions that include links to media files & rich content to them assist with selecting the right hotel property during the shopping process. The ability to search for a hotel by geographic area and points of interest will help narrow the search and ensure they are where they need to be. Having easy access to hotel amenities included such as complimentary breakfast or WiFi access can be key factors when choosing a hotel property. Room size and bedding options available may be an important consideration when making arrangements for more than one traveler.

And in today’s mobile world, a hotel booking engine needs to be mobile ready. Look for applications that use innovative responsive technology that automatically adjusts the screen display layout based on the type of device being used. Expand your sales network with features that allow you to quickly add affiliate Users or websites and the ability to easily customize the look and feel for each including headers, footers, style sheets, email addresses & company name. Access to local content as well as multi language and multi currency capability are additional factors to consider if you plan to expand your business into ethnic or international markets.

The hotel reservation system you use needs to allow you to manage your online hotel bookings with full payment capability and support of cancelation policies. It should have the content your customers are looking for at a competitive price. Look a booking engine with easy to use administrative features such as Profile Management and Preferences Management that provide you the ability to turn on/off these features yourself as oppose to paying someone to do it for you.

Reporting capabilities to track your business are also critical features to look for when shopping for a hotel booking engine. Booking statistics are important tools when measuring your business compared to previous periods, but quick and easy access to information like search statistics and “Look to Book” ratios can help you identify trends and potential issues before it’s too late to make adjustments or change course.

The hotel reservation system you choose should be fast, responsive and provide the relevant content your customers are looking for while driving efficiencies through innovation. It’s just a matter of finding the right technology partner to make this happen.

Hotel Bookings Can Help Increase Revenues

Hotel Bookings Can Help Increase Revenues

Are you serving all of your customer’s travel needs or leaving money on the table by not offering hotel accommodations along with an airline reservation or cruise vacation? Adding Hotel Reservation Software to your online booking engine is an excellent way to diversify your agency’s sources of revenue and capture additional commissions while taking care of more of your customers overall travel needs.

There are several things to consider when choosing the Hotel Booking Engine that is right for your business. Consider factors like who your customers are, what type of hotel accommodations are they interested in and how they prefer to research, book and purchase their travel products. A good online booking engine should include the content your customers are looking for with the ability for you to easily adjust a product’s selling price. It should be simple to use and contain links to media files & rich content to assist with selecting the right hotel property during the shopping and booking process.

You don’t need to be selling to customers located in international markets for multi-language capabilities to be important to your online business. For example, a significant portion of the population in many North American cities speak languages other than English. Studies have shown that communicating with these populations in their native language improves customer satisfaction and increases sales. You may consider adding a Spanish version of your online booking engine to attract and serve the growing Hispanic community throughout North America or French to serve the French speaking population in a city like Montreal. Multi-currency capability is something you will also look for in your online booking engine as well if you do plan to expand internationally.

Consider attracting travelers looking for last minute deals due to a sudden change in plans or those just looking for a last minute getaway with special offers. These “on the move” customers are more likely to use their mobile device to check last minute pricing and availability, especially when they are already traveling, so a mobile ready application will be key. Make sure that the Hotel Reservation Software that you choose is built using responsive technology that can automatically adjust the screen display to fit the type of device being used.

For a way to compete with some of the large Online Travel Agencies, consider a Hotel Booking Engine that includes powerful tools that allow you to pre-define business rules to create your own promotions and special deals for customers to take advantage of. You’ll want an online booking engine that allows you to easily adjust a product’s selling price or include specific value add offers based on a wide range of criteria that you define and preset. For example, consider adding VIP extras like champagne on arrival or access to other special amenities hotels reserve for their best customers.

And to maintain contact with your customers throughout the selling process and actual hotel stay, consider a Hotel Booking Engine that allows you to customize your emails to customers and communicate with them before, during and after their trip.

Finding Hotel Reservation Software with the right combination of options for your business can be critical and the key to the success of your online travel business. Finding a technology partner with the right solutions can be just as important.

Hotel Bookings Anytime, Anywhere

Hotel Bookings Anytime, Anywhere

The explosive use of mobile devices over the past decade has made mobile technology an important part of any travel business’ strategy to attract and serve customers. Have you ever turned around and went back home to get your mobile phone, even if you are going to be gone for just a few minutes? It seems like many of us have become so accustom to the convenience these devices provide, that they have become one of our most important, if not critical possessions.

Retailers recognize this opportunity and many have capitalized on the trend and can make their products and services available to their customers anytime, anywhere. Airline reservations are just a few clicks away and many applications include a hotel booking engine as well.

You’ll want to start with the basics like a mobile ready website so that customers can find your business quickly and easily online using the device of their choice. A good way to start your research may be to learn what your competitors are using for their online technology and see if something similar might work for you. Businesses of all size are realizing the potential of mobile ready technology to gain more customers and increase sales and are taking their business mobile. Today’s online consumer can shop for and purchase everything for their trip using their mobile device including airline tickets and hotel reservations and they can even purchase Travel Insurance for it all as well.

As Millennials become the largest segment of consumers, make sure your business is ready to serve this generation the way that they choose to shop. While there are no precise dates for when this contingent of the population starts or ends, typically a millennial was born between the early 1980s and the mid-1990s to early 2000s as a group. This is the generation that grew up with laptop computers, cellphones and helped fuel the explosion of the use of smart phones globally. They are quick to embrace new technology and make a majority of their purchases online. They also travel more than generations before them and often start their research for their travel accommodations using a hotel booking engine that is mobile ready.

When it comes to online technology, you need to be open to learning something new every single day, or you will quickly find your online technology outdated and unable to keep up with today’s mobile economy. To prevent this, one topic that should stay on your radar is mobile ready hotel booking engine. As you research the online booking engine options available, you should consider that more businesses will be offering their services online than ever before, ensuring that mobile ready travel technology is here to stay. The benefits of flexibility and ease of use improves the customer engagement in a way that millennial customers demand. A strong mobile strategy can increase sales while improving customer engagement and loyalty, a combination of factors for growth that your business is sure to benefit from.

Finding a hotel booking engine with the right combination of options for your business can be critical to the success of your travel business. Finding a partner with travel technology solutions to help you reach today’s mobile consumer anytime, anywhere they shop for travel can be just as important.

Capture More Travel Dollars Booking Hotels

Capture More Travel Dollars Booking Hotels

Booking your client’s hotel reservation along with their airline ticket will help diversify the type of products you offer and capture more of the travel dollars spent by your customers. But the number of applications and methods to book a hotel room can be so overwhelming that some travel agents shy away from offering this potentially lucrative travel component.

While many of the hotel booking engines in the market today appear to be the same, there can be vast differences in everything from price to the accuracy of the information provided. Just like one business may be different from another, the same can be said for a hotel booking engine. When evaluating any travel booking software, you need to consider whether it provides the flexibility and tools your business needs to succeed in today’s competitive travel marketplace. Any travel business needs to right tools and strategy to beat the competition and including hotels in your product portfolio should be part of your overall strategy.

Some initial research should help you identify a flexible & fully scalable application that can easily grow with your business while maintaining your unique brand identity. And don’t forget about today’s mobile consumer who shop and purchase just about anything using their handheld device. Be sure to look for an application that uses responsive technology so the user screens will automatically adjust to fit the type of device your customers prefer to use.

Your hotel booking engine needs to provide both “business to business” (B2B) as well as “business to consumer” (B2C) interfaces. You may even want to consider an application that allows you to extend your reach to affiliate agency websites via a “business to business to consumer” (B2B2C) interface. Make sure the booking engine can extend the reach of your business the way you require.

Your online booking engine should help you increase your revenues, gain new customers and expand your business into new markets. It should include links to media files & rich content to assist both agents and consumers with selecting the right hotel property during the shopping process. Pictures of the hotel public areas and sample guest rooms along with detailed descriptions of Hotel amenities can really help locate the right hotel.

The application you choose should be a flexible & fully scalable application that easily grows with your business while maintaining your unique brand identity. You’ll want an application with easy to use administrative tools that allow you to quickly define business rules to adjust a product’s selling price or include value add offers.

Adding hotels to your online booking engine can result in operational efficiency and increased revenues for your business while helping you gain new customers and expand your business into new markets. Your online booking solution needs to be a flexible & fully scalable application that allows your business to easily grow while protecting your own brand identity.

Finding an online travel booking engine with the right combination of features and flexibility can be critical to the success of any travel business. Finding the right technology partner to work with is an important first step.

Improving Your Clients Travel Experience

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Many travelers seem more interested in the opportunity to take “selfies” than seeing the actual sights they visit. A simple “drive-by” of a local tourist attraction or the next shopping opportunity is what many of today’s travelers end up doing when they visit a new destination. A good Travel Agent can transform a simple trip into an experience that dreams are made of and help create the experience of a lifetime.

The first step in improving your clients travel experience may start with upgrading your travel agent software. To start, you will need an application that allows your business to serve customers the way they choose. You will need access to multiple channels including Business to Business (B2B) for those consumers that still like to speak with a travel agent call center to discuss and book their travel arrangements. For consumers shopping online, you’ll need an easy to use Business to Consumer (B2C) online booking engine, but make sure it is a mobile ready so you can easily serve today’s online consumer via the device they choose, including their smartphone.

Next, make sure you are offering your clients complete service. If your agency falls short in serving all your customer’s needs, you risk them going to a competing travel agent or online travel agency that does. Your travel agent software should include the ability to not only book a client’s airline reservation, but select a seat for themselves or request a special meal. Be sure to include the ability for clients to research and book accommodations such as a hotel room as well as purchase ancillary products like travel insurance.

You’ll want applications that allow you to easily define business rules and create promotional offers and specific deals for your clients. Choosing an online booking solution that has the flexibility to quickly define business rules using a wide variety of criteria can help you customize special offers quickly and easily.

Your online booking engine should have detailed descriptions and links to media files to assist both your agents and online consumers during the research and shopping process. Pictures depicting room accommodations, hotel public areas, restaurants, etc. should all be integrated into the booking engine. Descriptions of hotel amenities available and local activities and attractions can also be quite beneficial and improve the overall shopping experience.

A mobile booking engine can help improve the experience by taking full advantage of access, content and powerful features that an online booking engine offers and combines this with the ease and mobility that using a handheld device provides. It can clearly make the difference when it comes to serving the increasing population “addicted” to their handheld devices which they use for just about everything.

You will also want to build and maintain your own brand identity with an online booking engine that provides you the ability to quickly and easily customize the “Look & Feel” to match your own branding, including unique headers, footers & CSS.

Whether you are looking to improve the overall travel experience for your existing customers or looking to attract new customers, flexibility can be key, Flexible & fully scalable travel agent software that can help you expand and grow your business can be important to your success, but finding the right technology partner to work with can be even more important.

Why it’s Important to Drive More Hotel Bookings

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There are several great reasons to include hotel reservation system as part of your travel agency’s overall selling platform. While some of the more obvious reasons such as the positive impact ancillary commissions for hotel bookings can have to your bottom line can be quite compelling by itself, there are several benefits to incorporating a hotel booking engine into your sales process that you may have never thought about.

Think for a minute how much competition there is out there ready to serve your Clients and take their travel dollars. There are countless airline websites, hotel websites and Online Travel Agencies (OTAs) dominating the market to name just a few. All these different players compete for your clients’ travel dollars using various channels and special offers with many providing “one stop shopping” to serve a customer’s complete travel needs. The service and convenience that using a single source for all travel has become so widespread and popular that many customers now anticipate this “total service” from their travel agent. If your travel agent software falls short and does not include access to a hotel reservation system to help you provide your clients with everything they’ll need on their trip, you may risk loosing their business altogether to a competing travel agent or online travel agency that does.

Maintaining the loyalty of your customers will also have a significant positive impact on the success of your business. With so many players competing for travel dollars, strengthening your relationship with customers and creating strong customer loyalty is more important to your business than ever. General wisdom tells us that it will cost you a lot more to acquire a new customer than to maintain a current customer. Keeping your customers happy and serving all their travel needs such as providing them with access to an online hotel booking engine could be key to your success in maintaining their loyalty.

The risk of loosing a customer to a large online channel can also be countered by the unique service and expertise that only working with an experienced travel agent can bring. Maintaining a close relationship with your Client’s and offering the “special personal touch” that only a trusted, “live” travel agent can provide is an excellent way to compete with the giant Online Travel Agencies (OTAs) and reduce your risk of loosing customers to them.

A professional travel agent often knows how to ensure their clients get special VIP treatment upon arrival and can be a valuable resource when finding the right accommodations at the right price. They often have special reduced pricing with specific hotel properties and/or access to unique amenities upon your client’s arrival which are not offered or available to the “average” guest. Working this type of VIP service angle can often help you provide that personal touch and improve your clients’ overall travel experience. A hotel booking engine that allows you to easily highlight or promote when or where special offers are available can be critical to offering special deals to your clients as well.

Finding the right hotel reservation system can be an important decision for your business, finding the right technology partner to work with can be even more important.