Big Data helps to know the audience, personalize messages, analyze the competition and much more. We show you 5 uses of Big Data applied to the travel and tourism sector
Travel companies are known for capturing and storing large amounts of data from internal and external sources, and are generally associated with customer opinions, habits and behavior: flight routes, transactions, returns, records, etc. Until recently, this data was only stored and travel companies had difficulty using it. But it is increasingly easier to take advantage of this information, so that the client feels more appreciated and better served, which means more income and greater profits.
According to a study published by Forbes, the growth of the use of Big Data by tourism companies is perceived. In 2015, only 17% of the companies surveyed used this technology, however, by the end of 2017, it was already 53%.
Big Data can help companies show the right message, at the right time, a specific person and, thus, increase their conversion rate. Although its uses are varied, it can be especially useful for travel companies, as it can allow predictive and behavioral analysis. According to the Minerva Travel study conducted by Google Spain, more than 75% of travel searches are done online; while 67% seek inspiration in this channel, YouTube being the first source of inspiration.
5 ways Big Data can help the travel industry
1. Revenue management
One of the most effective uses of Big Data in the travel industry is related to revenue management. To maximize financial results, hotels and other tourism companies must be able to sell the right product, to the right customer, at the right time, at the right price, through the right channel, so Big Data has an incalculable value for this.
In particular, internal data, such as previous occupancy rates, room income and current reservations, can be combined with external data, such as information on local events, flights and school vacations, to predict and anticipate demand more accurately. As a result, hotels are better able to manage room prices and rates, increasing them in times of high demand, in order to maximize the income generated.
2. Reputation management.
In the Internet era, customers can leave comments on a wide range of different platforms, including social networks, search engines and review websites, sharing their opinions and experiences. And more and more, customers review these comments and compare different options before making a reservation.
This data, combined with internally acquired comments, can be used to detect the most important strengths and weaknesses, and where customers are impressed or disappointed. Once this information has been collected, hotels can use it to inform their training efforts, in order to make improvements and ensure that future reviews are positive.
3. Strategic Marketing
Within the travel industry, it can be difficult to succeed with marketing because potential customers are very varied in who they are, where they come from and what they are looking for. However, Big Data can help tourism businesses adopt a more strategic approach to their marketing efforts, targeting the right people in the right way.
More specifically, Big Data can help companies identify the main trends that exist among their customers, where the similarities are and what are the best marketing opportunities. It can also help companies understand where these people are and when marketing is most relevant to them. This allows the sending of messages based on the time, location and other data, which allows the delivery of more specific promotional content.
4. Customer Experience
Hotels and other companies in the travel and tourism industry have a wide range of interactions with customers and each of these interactions can provide valuable data, which can be used to improve the overall customer experience. This data can include everything from social media conversations and online reviews, to service usage data.
If used effectively, this information may reveal which services customers use most, which ones they do not use at all, and which ones are more likely to request or speak. Thus, companies can make more informed and data-based decisions about the services they provide, those they no longer need to provide, the services they wish to introduce and the new technology in which they choos.
5. Market research
Big Data can also be used to collect and analyze information about the main competitors, in order to obtain a clearer understanding of what other operators or businesses are offering to customers. Again, this data can be obtained from a wide variety of online sources, as places proliferate where customers share their opinions about hotels, airplane and travel companies. Ultimately, the data can be used to identify strengths, weaknesses and general reputation of rival companies. This can be extremely valuable, as it can help business leaders detect potential gaps in the market or opportunities to deliver in a way that rivals are not achieving. This, in turn, can lead to higher demand and higher revenues.
Big data can benefit those in the travel industry in several ways, allowing them to make more evidence-based decisions. These include the ability to anticipate future demand with greater precision, optimize pricing strategies, target marketing more accurately and improve the customer experience.