With all the travel technology solutions available throughout the world today, how do you find the best solution to help your online travel business succeed? As many quickly learn, there’s more than language and currency capabilities to consider when choosing the right technology solution for your travel business. As many technology companies learn, there are often local market requirements that need to be properly addressed before an application can be successful in a market. There can be a huge difference between “globalizing” a product so that it is generic enough to work across markets verses “localizing” a product. Just as the languages and currencies used may vary in different countries, the regulations regarding consumers and the disclosure of information during the selling process may be different. Your technology needs to be flexible enough to handle these market nuances.
Centralized travel technology solutions that manages fast, live connections with the relevant Supplier content are also an important key element for success for any online travel business. This is an example of when “global” content sources may not be relevant to the local market, requiring integration of “local” content sources to provide the products your customers are looking for. The technology you choose needs the flexibility to easily integrate the right combination of Global and Local content so that your solution has the products your customers are looking for.
The travel technology you choose should also include the ability to define flexible business rules that allow you to adjust a product offer based on how you choose to run your business. Some travel agents may want to offer a discount to customers who make their travel arrangements using a travel agency online booking tool as a way to encourage them to use the most cost effective channel. Some may look to offer a lower price on a specific preferred Supplier. Bottom line is you will need flexibility in defining how and when specific price adjustment rules apply. And since today’s consumers have more options available to them than ever before, targeted messages and custom offers have become a key marketing tool used by many successful travel companies. Access to a travel booking engine that quickly and easily define special offers can be a critical tool when you are looking to easily communicate where the best deals are or a specific offer can be found.
The competition customers online is brutal and responding to market trends and special offers can be overwhelming. Today’s travel technology solutions need to provide you the ability to quickly respond to competitive threats, identify market trends and easily include any special offers that are available. Consider a technology solution with robust reporting tools that can help you keep track of important information about your travel business such as bookings by product type, supplier, travel dates, booking dates and more. Isolate search statistics by website to know what customers are searching for and help identify potential product gaps or pricing issues. This type of information can be a powerful tool when analyzing or making adjustments to your business plan.
Finding the right technology solution for your travel business is important, finding a technology partner who understands the need to localize product for your specific market can be even more important.