Agents and tour operators have been encouraged to use online search engine trends to help target their marketing and grow their businesses.
Speaking at the Association of Independent Tour Operators’ (Aito) overseas conference, Niels Magill, senior analyst at Google Travel, said travel businesses should be harnessing data and using it to their advantage.
He urged them to find out more about Google Trends, a free tool where members of the public can look at the demand patterns of different words and phrases on the search engine.
Magill said: “You’re able to see if there is a demand for something. You can search for your business and see when people are searching for you and when those searches peak and you can also search for your competition.”
Magill said agents and operators alike should use the tool to help target and tailor their marketing to ensure they are relevant and following search trends.
He claimed that only 17% of consumers search for travel brands when beginning their search for a holiday and that the vast majority of people instead type in a generic request.
“For the 83% they are pretty much in the open water and for you to try and get hold of using demand and trend data,” Magill added.
Magill's data also showed that consumers spend an average of two hours and 20 minutes researching a holiday and that 60% of leisure travellers have watched a video online to help them make a decision on their holiday booking.
He described the travel industry as a “more sophisticated vertical” compared to many other industries and said travel and retail were “the two industries leading the path” when it comes to the online space.
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