Bookings via traditional travel agencies are declining nowadays. More and more consumers book their holidays online. The internet offers travelers far more opportunities for comparison and they usually aim for the cheapest offer. The vast variety of possibilities change consumers’ expectations and with that the requirements of the industry.
Our blog post reveals how travel companies are mastering the challenge of understanding their customers' purchase decisions with help of marketing attribution.
COMPLEX CUSTOMER JOURNEYS CHALLENGE TRAVEL MARKETERS
The customer journey in the travel industry is often very complex. More than 50% of all digital customer journeys include several devices (Attribution Study Travel, Exactag). The average user changes his device up to 26 times before completing a booking. Besides, travel is a highly seasonal industry and marketing managers spend huge advertising budgets to reach as many consumers as possible during these limited time windows.
To launch successful advertising campaigns, however, a complete picture and understanding of their consumers’ behavior is required. Statistics show, however, that this is exactly what causes great difficulties for travel brands. According to a survey, almost 25% of respondents state that they are not able to recognize their customers through various channels and devices (State of Data and Analytics in Travel, EyeforTravel).
THE LAST CLICK MODEL DOES NOT REFLECT THESE COMPLEX JOURNEYS
According to our Attribution Study for the travel industry, consumers need an average of 25 days to complete a booking and generate 20 touchpoints during their journey. Compared to other industries, where the average customer journey takes only 7 days, customer journeys in the travel sector are exceptionally long.
This can be explained due to the fact that holidays are high-quality purchases. Consumers often research destinations months in advance and get inspiration from a variety of different sources. Due to this complex and long customer journey, travel companies often ask themselves: Which marketing measures were actually relevant for the user’s conversion?
If companies continue to rely on the last click attribution model, they do not know the efficiency of each individual touchpoint. Assigning a conversion exclusively to the last click before booking does not reflect reality in any way.
Especially in the travel industry, where customer journeys are long and consist of many different touchpoints, we recommend a data-driven attribution model. It gives a much more realistic view of the customer’s interactions with the brand and how much influence each touchpoint actually had on the conversion.
CROSS-DEVICE TRACKING PROVIDES A HOLISTIC VIEW OF THE CUSTOMER
Customer journeys in the travel sector are not only becoming longer and more complex, they are also increasingly making use of a wide variety of different devices. Our Attribution Study Travel has shown that already more than 50% of all customer journeys take place on multiple devices in the travel industry.
Consumers often convert on a device other than the one on which they started their search. Travelers looking to book a holiday or flight might start their research on their smartphone, then later double-check the offer on their tablet and finally book the trip on their laptop.
With the help of cross-device tracking, marketers can analyze individual touchpoints across different devices and the users’ behavior. This enables them to track their customers seamlessly on all devices and channels. This is the most important basis for creating personalized and relevant content that reaches the consumer in the right place, at the right time and with the right message.
First-party data provides the most secure and accurate link between a customer and his devices. Therefore, marketers should encourage their customers to log in to their website or app.
Data-driven attribution helps marketers to understand the efficiency of their marketing spend and gain insights into which measures worked and which did not. This helps marketers plan their future campaigns efficiently and optimize their advertising budgets.
As a leading provider of marketing attribution, our mission is to provide our customers with the best possible support in using attribution to optimize their marketing strategies and advertising budgets. In the study, we investigate key questions concerning the impact and performance of digital marketing channels and provide benchmarks for our customers. With the help of anonymous customer data, the study provides insights into what today's customer journeys look like, how marketers can fairly evaluate individual touchpoints and how marketing channels and budgets can be optimized with the findings.