Due to the growth of the Internet in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region, there are a few things to keep in mind when planning your online marketing strategy to book more rooms and sell more tickets. We’ve already discussed how the growth of the middle class is changing the profile of the international traveler and why you need to make sure your travel website has been translated. In this post we’ll cover four other key trends impacting the travel industry.
1. Booking Last Minute
Of the travelers in APAC countries, 46 percent say they prefer to book online rather than through a traditional travel agent, according to the European Travel Commission. With instant access and the ability to book just hours before they need their room or transportation, many travelers prefer more flexibility in their travel plans. By making your booking process easy and streamlined and ensuring your translated descriptions appeal to those flying by the seat of their pants, you can increase your bottom line through boosted ticket or room sales.
2. Going Mobile
Directly in line with the last-minute booking trend, 40 percent of business travelers and 25 percent of leisure travelers in the APAC region prefer to do their bookings on mobile devices rather than a laptop. Mobile devices are easy to access and handle while in transit, and most have Internet data plans that let travelers go online regardless of whether they have access to Wi-Fi. Take advantage of this ease of access by incorporating responsive design into your mobile messaging so that consumers can easily utilize your offerings when they are on the go.
3. Serving Outbound Travelers from China
Within the APAC region, China has the largest number of outbound travelers, with more than 100 million traveling to another country in 2014, according to NextportChina. That number is expected to double by 2020. Since the Chinese are such a great source of travel income, it is important to cater to their needs. For example, first-time and millennial tourists prefer peer-to-peer travel service networks such as Airbnb or Uber, and many of them pay attention to prices, looking for the next deal. Translation comes into play here as well, as you cannot reach this audience if they cannot read your marketing materials.
4. Anticipating Growth in India
Making a good online marketing strategy for travel in the APAC region isn’t just about what is happening now—you also need to identify which trends are coming so you can establish yourself as a leader and a trusted, go-to source. For example, in India, which is renowned for being a haven for backpackers on a budget, online travel sales are doubling. In 2013, travelers spent $15.84 billion in online bookings, and this is slated to nearly double to $30.61 billion by 2016.
Creating a targeted online marketing strategy can help you experience fast growth through your online sales. Through services such as global consumer analytics and mobile app localization, you can directly relate to your potential customers looking for a hotel room or a last-minute train ticket.
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