Is there a tougher, more competitive business than the travel business? If you’re a travel agent and you’re still in business, you’ve discovered the key to competing with Gargantuan Internet Travel Services, Inc. is customer service. You understand it, and they don’t – simple as that. It’s the reason your customers call you and not 1-800-KEEPMEONHOLDALLDAYLONG. But, technology is not creeping up on you. It’s making a full-fledged frontal assault. Can you continue to keep up? We think you can and we know how.
How about a two-way dialog with your customers wherever they are in the world, for free? How about real time customer surveys about destinations? How about real time information for your customers about promotions and special deals direct to their mobile device? How about providing your customers in Timbuktu with local information about restaurants, services, and tours? Will that keep them coming back? We think so. And getting a custom mobile app to do it will cost a lot less than you think.
Here are some things a mobile app could do for a travel agency:
- Deals: As a travel agent you want to make a sale. Consumers want deals. Alerting them to personalized deals through your custom smartphone app will ensure that you are top of mind and that they will consider booking their travel with you rather than doing weeks of research on the Internet.
- Booking: In these busy days, no one wants to go through a long booking process. Making booking easy for your clients will give them just one more reason to book with you. Allow them to save their passport information, travel preferences, and payment method through your app’s secure interface and they can book with the touch of a button while on the go. (And if they have a thought and want to book on a whim, that option is now available.)
- Customer Service: Have your clients run into troubles during their travels? Missed their plane? Is the hotel overbooked? Allow them to get in touch with you through your custom app and you can resolve their issue in record time. They’ll remember you the next time they want to go somewhere else and will tell their friends about the great travel agent with the custom app that got them out of bind.
- Local Information: Prepare your customer with local information on their travel destination from your mobile app. Metro maps, emergency contact information, helpful phrases in the local language – the possibilities are endless.
Any added benefit for your customer will help them remember you the next time they look to book a trip. It’s sometimes harder to keep a client than get a new one, but it’s also more expensive to get a new one than retain the ones that have already used your services. Give them a reason to stay with you.
Do you have other ideas for travel apps? Leave a comment and let us know.