Data Provided By Smith Travel Research and Phocuswright
Much of the
millions spent on travel technology every year is focused on improving
processes and platforms behind the scenes. However, the ultimate goal is
usually to shape how, what, and where travelers book. The purpose of
PhoCusWright’s (like Smith) travel research report, Traveler Technology Survey
2010, is to examine traveler adoption levels and attitudes toward new travel
platforms, features, and functions powered by innovations in technology, and to
see how travelers put these attitudes into action. Understanding these trends
allows travel companies to identify how quickly consumers are adopting new
technologies and information sources and provides a benchmark for determining where
companies’ own initiatives stack up. How do travelers interact with travel
companies through social networks? What percentage of travelers has a
smartphone, and what activities are they performing on their devices?
often consult a broad range of information from several different sources when
planning their travel. This section examines the channels travelers turn to,
the media through which they get information, and what informational features
influence their travel decisions.
shopping process can often be a long and complex endeavor, and most consumers not
only use more than one website, but also use more than one type of website. The
most common website category consumers typically use when shopping for leisure travel
is online travel agencies (63%), followed by search engines (52%). According to companies like Phocuswright and
Smith, travel research shows usage of these top categories is significantly
higher among users of online social networks versus non-users, as is the case
with many of the various site categories. Two notable exceptions are destination
websites and magazine/newspaper websites, which are nearly equally popular among
online social network users and nonusers. These results reflect the age
differences between users of social networks and nonusers. Users tend to be
younger, and younger travelers have a stronger affinity for information aggregators
such as OTAs and search. Destination and magazine/newspaper websites do not
offer a wide breadth of information, and in turn, social network users do not
show stronger usage of these media than non-users.
13% typically use social networks when shopping for leisure travel. The category
clearly ranks low compared to travel-specific categories and general search,
but still represents a substantial group. Microblogs such as Twitter have a
notably smaller following, at 3% of social network users.
the world of websites, recommendations from friends and family are the most
widely influential at 43%. The gap between social network users and non-users
is particularly strong when it comes to these recommendations, at 48% versus 31%,
respectively. Phocuswright (like Smith) travel research can help you decipher
what consumer trends mean for your business.