When an industry changes, businesses need to adapt to meet the needs of their customers. In recent years, the business travel industry has gone through unprecedented levels of change as moves were made to navigate the pandemic, accommodate sustainability goals, and adjust to the current state of the global economy.
Amid these changes as we return to business travel, we’ve also noticed a big shift in the priorities of our customers. Today, travelers care more about safety, sustainability, and accessibility than ever before.
As CWT’s Global Digital Marketing Director, I seek, with my team, to understand and optimize the customer experience for travelers and travel managers whose priorities have drastically evolved from just a few years ago.
1. Lead with relevant content
My team saw the need to change how we communicated with our customers to meet these needs and more. Instead of simply trying to sell to them, we altered our mindset to focus on providing relevant content that met their wants and needs. In doing so, we found a noticeable improvement in the performance of our website. Using digital experience analytics (DXA), we were able to learn what content was resonating the most and tweaked it further to get as much out of it as possible.
The next step was to be more empathetic to our customer base. In today’s climate, nerves are high and it’s easy to understand why. Trust in online purchases isn’t as high, and we’re noticing an increased desire to speak to a person directly. With this knowledge, the challenge becomes how can we help people at every stage in the journey and provide answers to their most pressing questions, with the end-goal being to make the overall experience as personalized as possible.
2. Close the loop
Our digital partner Contentsquare found that 46% of traffic in travel and hospitality was made up of returning users last year, meaning less than one in every two visitors on average was an existing customer. Many remained loyal to brands and online experiences in the travel space.
Competition to win back business and gain new customers is more intense than ever. Today’s travel buyers and travelers have more choices than ever before.
By listening to our customers and adjusting to meet their needs and not just our own, we can constantly adjust to preserve and reward their loyalty.
We use journey analysis segmented by user group to make sure that customers aren’t continuously searching to find what they’re looking for. If we notice looping behaviors, that indicates that we need to dive deeper to resolve challenges that aren’t as obvious as a broken link or code. Journey analysis has helped us boost traffic.
With digital transformation occurring at warp speed and priorities shifting, a content-driven, rewarding digital customer journey is more important than ever.