Travel companies looking to improve conversion rates might want to note that everyone’s in hot pursuit of the same customer – for travel, there’s only so much engagement that will keep the customer riveted. The hotel needs to deliver the goods online and offline – an easy-to-use website, value-for-money prices, free basic amenities (Internet and breakfast!) and an excellent arrival and stay (customer service, clean, well-appointed rooms, quick resolution of minor issues). While big brands have an easier time attracting and cultivating new customers, customer retention is not to be taken for granted. According to a Nielsen/Netratings release, travel had the lowest customer retention among 3 key web categories (search, career development and travel), Search at 71%, Career sites at 38% and travel at 31% (at home retention rate). The study used top sites in each category to arrive at their findings but the learnings are clear – travel sites need to give customers a good enough reason to return.
Co-founder and president of a New York based hotel company for 24 years. Grew the firm to five hotels in Manhattan and also developed a greenfield project at MacArthur airport, New York. Speaker at numerous prestigious forums including Economy Hotels World Asia, Lodging Conference, NYU, Columbia University Real Estate Roundtable, Baruch College's Zicklin School and ALIS. President and ceo of New York City Hotel Association since January 2017. View all posts by Vijay Dandapani