Friday, January 23, 2009

2009 "Opportunities in Online Travel" over at the WebInTravel website

Siew Hoon of WebInTravel has been asking people their views Opportunities in Online Travel in 2009. I sent her my top three - which are:

1. Become the Deal Hunter - consumers will still travel they just need deals. Does not mean just price discounts but consumers will need suppliers and intermediaries to be prepared to offer unique specials and deals.

2. Focus on the Product - expectations will be lower so now is the time to invest in your product. Innovation in a down turn is critical, as is fixing all those bugs that have been ignored in times of growth

3. Steal market share from less resilient/prepared competitors - no explanation needed!

If you'd like to see more, including what Ram Badrinathan of PhoCusWright said, then head over to the WebInTravel newsroom.


Dave said...

Definately agree with your first point although the target market one is focusing on will determine how important 'deal chasing' is in terms of effort searching vs value gained.

For the budget travel market, I think this has been and always will be important. The issue until now has been how to make 'the best deal' available to many without high distribution costs.

We're now focusing on recombombulating deal distribution. (Sorry, I'm now in love with that word after your post last year!).

Distributing bonus offers and discounts from suppliers at zero transactional cost so the customer gets (should anyway) the best deal possible. I think it will be very effective in the backpacker market but much less so in other markets where the search effort vs value gained is different.

Tim Hughes said...

@Dave - I am forming a Recomboulators annon group on facebook. Love it!

I also agree that the higher end of the market cut just lop 50% off the price and hope the best. They have to construct deals with inclusions - free parking, wifi, discounts on mini bar, restaurant or spa treatments, extra miles/rewards etc.

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