One of the most common challenges for a destination is accurately capturing a visitor’s intent to visit and ensuring that a personalized experience leads to both clicks and goal conversions. Visitor Guides, often referred to as Travel Planners, are an essential way to track intent to visit. Like many other destinations, Seattle Southside Regional Tourism… Read More
One of the most common challenges for a destination is accurately capturing a visitor’s intent to visit and ensuring that a personalized experience leads to both clicks and goal conversions. Visitor Guides, often referred to as Travel Planners, are an essential way to track intent to visit.
Like many other destinations, Seattle Southside Regional Tourism Authority’s Travel Planner requests remain a critical goal in tracking website engagement. In Fall 2019, the Seattle Southside RTA team saw a decrease in their Travel Planner request conversions, both year-over-year and quarter-over-quarter. Furthermore, the team found that the gap between their Targeted and Default audience increased, highlighting that this goal had become a more challenging conversion point for audiences.
With the intent of increasing Travel Planner conversions, the Seattle Southside RTA team decided to refresh their content with a seasonal focus on their imagery. They first created two versions of Travel Planner content, both with gorgeous Fall scenery highlighting the region’s colorful season.
Launching the content as an A/B test, the Seattle Southside RTA team was amazed at the increased engagement. Within the first few weeks, this new content saw an 8% increasein Click Through Rates (CTRs) over their regular Travel Planner content. Better yet, the team saw a 15% increase in Travel Planner conversions within the first month of the new content running.
Encouraged by this initial response, the team continued to run the seasonal content until the last few weeks of the year. Quarter over quarter, the team saw a 26% increase in conversions, with a year-over-year increase of 43%! Using the new Goal Dashboard, the Seattle Southside RTA team was able to further breakdown the conversion rate for each of the new content pieces allowing them to see that the new content pieces not only had higher CTRs, but also much higher conversion rates vs their original content. The team found a 79% increase in conversions for their Desktop content, as well as a 63% increase for their Mobile content.
Inspired by the results of their A/B test, Seattle Southside RTA plans on launching more tests for goal related content with seasonal imagery. Knowing that the new Goal Dashboard allows for a deeper level of insight into their testing, the Seattle Southside RTA team is better equipped to deepen their visitor’s personalization journey to increase goal conversions and engagement.
Congratulations to Seattle Southside Regional Tourism Authority for a job well done!
Interested in increasing your conversions? Personalization can help you get there. We’d love to chat with you more about making it happen!
Happy New Year, travel marketers! The beginning of January always brings its own kind of magic with resolutions and the opportunity to both reflect on the past year and look towards the next. It’s also a time that, if I can be honest, is a little overwhelming with the pressure of setting life-changing goals. And… Read More
Happy New Year, travel marketers! The beginning of January always brings its own kind of magic with resolutions and the opportunity to both reflect on the past year and look towards the next. It’s also a time that, if I can be honest, is a little overwhelming with the pressure of setting life-changing goals. And it’s not only personal goals! Working within the digital marketing space I feel that every other content piece is focused on “new year, new marketing strategy” resolutions that couldn’t be easier to implement – or so the articles read…
At Bound, we’re big believers in starting where you’re at, especially when it comes to personalization and your marketing strategy. That’s why one of our resolutions this year is to focus on something that we know has an impact: optimizing our goal conversions.
When it comes to our monthly content reports, few things give our Customer Success Managers more joy than seeing an increase in click through rates on goal related content pieces. But as fun as these increases are to see, we are even more thrilled by increases in the goal conversions themselves. As we’ve become increasingly aware of the important relationship between clicks and conversions – and the very different stories each can highlight when they don’t align – we’re excited to share our new Goal Dashboard and highlight three resolutions on increasing your conversions in 2020:
Read More (into your A/B tests):
When in doubt about your content, run an A/B Test! While click through rates can certainly highlight your audience’s preferences for the imagery, copy or CTA, how do you account for the content’s impact on the actual conversion? Within the new Goal Dashboard, you can now compare conversion rates against your campaigns, segments and pieces of content, allowing for a deeper level of insight. We recently took a closer look at an eNewsletter related A/B test we have been running with a DMO. Month over month, we found that one content piece had consistently less clicks than the other. However, in comparing the conversion rates between the two pieces, we saw that the content piece with a lower CTR had a considerably higher conversion rate. This comparison helped us see the value of a content piece we might have otherwise removed and will help inform future A/B tests.
Exercise (your understanding of your Mobile and Desktop visitors differences):
As we’ve written about before, there are many things to take into consideration when creating content for your Desktop and Mobile visitors. Goal conversions are no different, especially given that our Mobile visitors are often less likely to convert. Within the new Goal Dashboard, we can now dive into the conversion rates for our different segments across campaigns, allowing us to compare, for example, fly-ins served to desktop visitors and banners served to mobile audiences. Layering in this insight can help us develop content best suited for each of our unique visitors groups.
Spend Less (time guessing how your content is performing):
Over the past few years, we’ve increasingly become fans of thoughtful “abandonment” content and the way these direct CTAs can increase conversions for visitors who have initiated, but not completed, a conversion goal. While we often see this content with high CTRs, it can be challenging to determine how exactly this content contributes to the overall goal. Thankfully, our new Goal Dashboard takes the guesswork out of content creation and helps us see exactly which Abandonment content is best contributing to the goal.
Our hope for your 2020 is that your conversion related content is directly increasing your goal conversions (leaving you with more time toincrease engagement for your ad visitors!) Knowing that goal conversions are a vital piece to understanding your visitors intent to travel, we’re excited that our new Goal Dashboard will bring new awareness and insight this year. Cheers to you and your increased conversions!
Want to learn more about the Goal Dashboard or personalizing to increase your conversions? We’d love to chat with you and hear all about your 2020 marketing resolutions!
With the launch of their “always on” regional “Reclaim the Weekend” ad campaign, VISIT DENVER faced the challenge of how to keep their main landing page relevant. The regional effort, which promotes visiting Denver for a long weekend, targets a wide variety of personas that change monthly. Instead of creating multiple new landing pages every… Read More
With the launch of their “always on” regional “Reclaim the Weekend” ad campaign, VISIT DENVER faced the challenge of how to keep their main landing page relevant. The regional effort, which promotes visiting Denver for a long weekend, targets a wide variety of personas that change monthly. Instead of creating multiple new landing pages every month, VISIT DENVER used personalization with Bound to match the hero slideshow content to the appropriate persona.
VISIT DENVER developed and rolled out three waves of ad personalization within their first year with Bound:
The first step was to personalize the slideshow for visitors coming to the landing page directly from the ad. This involved not only showing the appropriate group of slides but also starting the slideshow with the content targeted to that persona. While these visitors only had a 4% increase in clicks specifically on their persona-targeted slides, overall page engagement was significantly increased. Compared to other visitors, the ad persona segments had a 53% increase in visit duration and a 45% decrease in bounce rate when entering the site through the Reclaim the Weekend landing page.
The second step was to use Bound’s Media Optimizer tool to personalize the slideshow for visitors who were exposed to the ad. The pixeling capabilities of Media Optimizer allowed Denver to target Reclaim page visitors who had seen, but hadn’t clicked on the ad, as well as visitors who came back to the site after their specific persona campaign ended. Not only did these pixeled visitors have great page engagement, but they also had a 100% increase in clickthrough rates on the slideshow and were 28% more likely to click specifically on the persona-targeted slides. With this information, Denver had the data needed to show that visitors were still interested in persona-specific content even if they had not clicked on the ad.
The third step was to build on the learnings from the first two phases of personalization and launch a fly-in campaign. The fly-in targeted visitors exposed to the persona who had never clicked on the ad or otherwise reached the Reclaim page. Using the fly-in, Denver was able to successfully direct 2% of these visitors to the page and continued to increase website engagement. Visitors exposed to the persona fly-in had a further 23% increase in visit duration and 18% decrease in bounce rate.
By identifying visitor interests based on ads, even if those visitors never directly engaged with the ad, Denver has been able to increase views on their key ad landing page and continually increase their landing page engagement. This has increased overall site performance and has allowed Denver to optimize the experience for these high-value website visitors.
Want to learn more about personalizing for your targeted ad visitors?
So, visitors land on your travel website, search for flights and accommodation, and then randomly leave without completing the booking — almost on a whim. If your website has been seeing a similar trend, then you are not alone.
On an average, more than 95% of traffic coming on travel and hospitality websites leave without completing the purchase process. Why? Because travel eCommerce is one of the trickiest online businesses — thanks to lengthy marketing funnels, complex search parameters, complicated checkout processes, multiple forms, and massive personalization.
The average conversion rate (% of website visitors turning into customers) of travel websites is a dismal 4% — far below the 10% conversion rate of financial and media firms.
But you can always improve this figure by optimizing your website so that more visitors turn into customers. Below mentioned are some best actionable tips you can implement to increase online bookings.
1) Make Your ‘Site Search’ Smart and Simple
For no other industry in online marketing is the search function as critical as that in case of travel sites. Visitors in this domain typically operate in the ‘browsing and finding’ mode.
Your visitors reach your site’s homepage through different channels such as search engine results pages, social media, and online ads.
Only when a visitor selects a location and a date, will he find relevant results from which he/she will make a choice.
Help Visitors Choose
Most of the time, the results page of a search engine is full of hotel or flight and in some cases destination if he/she is planning a vacation, which most visitors haven’t used or explored before. Naturally, it is difficult for them to choose one from the lot. Here is when you should help your prospects select the best deal.
Let us understand this with the below-mentioned example:
In a world where everything is accessible at a click of a button, travel websites also need to understand that their visitors also want instant results to their queries. MakeMyTrip.com is a travel industry giant in India that offers you vacation packages besides its popular flight and hotel booking business.
When meandering, confused visitors get a well-curated list of such packages under his/her budget with beautiful and catchy visuals, day plans, and itineraries, MakeMyTrip (MMT) instantly relieves them of their pain points. Such services can not only save a lot of time and energy of your visitors, but encourage them to trust you and form a long lasting bond with your brand.
Firstly, display your prices prominently. Price is one of the key criteria on which most visitors make their choice. When the price for different service providers is placed without a clear distinction on the results page, the usability of the website.
Also, when you’re offering a discount on a service, mentioning it only in terms of percentage can prove useless to some visitors. It’s always a better option to display the new or discounted price of the service below or after the original price, and the savings which they would make if they choose it.
Reviews and Ratings
Showing reviews and ratings on your website can act as cherry on top of the cake. Adding them can significantly work towards improving the chances of more conversions on your site.
Why? Because in today’s day and age most individuals trust peer recommendations more than they trust they trust advertising. This is one reason why travel websites like MMT heavily advocate the use of reviews and ratings.
You have to get your visitors’ attention really fast and make them act right away in order to score transactions. One of the ways to do so is by using the principles of persuasion – creating a sense of urgency and scarcity in the minds of individuals.
Urgency is when you ask prospects and customers to act quickly in order to receive an incentive. Many travel industry giants such as Booking, Makemytrip, etc., have been using effectively using this strategy to increase their conversions. Learn from them and employ the same strategies on your travel website to reap maximum benefits.
Offer special deals with discounts or incentives to users for a limited period. The incentives that can only be redeemed in a specific time range will push users to buy it before the deal ends.
Moreover, you can also display the number of people viewing a particular listing on the results page to instill urgency among visitors. Such a technique can not only increase the listing’s perceived popularity but urge individuals to act fast and grab the deal before someone else does. Here’s how Agoda.com does it:
‘Last few tickets available at a discounted price,’ ‘Book now to get a free hotel upgrade,’ ‘Book in the next one hour to get free wine on arrival,’ ‘Get complimentary breakfast if booked in the next 30 minutes.’
There are endless ways to generate urgency and dissuade the visitors to go on a website hopping spree. However, be reasonable and don’t make a promise you can’t keep because that will just tarnish your reputation. Booking.com constantly updates its booking status to create a sense of scarcity.
Form optimization is equally important in your conversion funnel. When visitors have done all the research and chosen a flight, hotel, or a holiday package, you don’t want them to abandon the booking.
Below are a few ways you can optimize your forms:
Use intelligent forms
Put as few form-fields as possible
Test different form layouts
Use multi-step forms
Find more of such form optimization methods, and read more here.
2) The Progress Bar is Your Lifeboat
Complex booking experiences make travelers switch to higher cost offline channels. However, it’s extremely difficult to cut down on the amount of information that must be collected during the booking process.
Dividing the process into identifiable steps can make customers’ life much easier. These identifiable steps serve as road signs — the customer will know what lies ahead after they complete that step.
3) Go Mobile
Your users are spending more on the go instead of waiting to reach their computer to make a purchase.
According to a survey conducted by Travelport, the average US leisure traveler uses between seven and eight different apps in his/her mobile. When it comes to hotels, 39% of guests would like to use digital room keys, and 36% would like to check into a hotel via an app.
In terms of last-minute bookings, Criteo’s Summer Travel Report found that hotel’s received just over 70% of last-minute bookings via mobile devices.
Investing in a responsive design for a mobile application, ensuring that it has the same functionality and features of your website could be a smart move.You can also leverage the native features of mobile devices (GPS, click-to-call, etc.) to offer a better user experience.
4) Feature USPs
If your company has unique benefits to offer to its visitors , then prominently display them on your homepage. Doing so can not only convince your target audience to use your services, but turn into repeat customers.
Below is a screenshot from Expedia’s homepage, which presents its USPs prominently.
5) Upsell and Cross-Sell With Elan
Would they want to add on travel insurance as a package deal? Or perhaps, get flight seats with extra legroom at a little extra cost? Or maybe extend their trip by three days to get a steal of a deal?
The options for add-ons, cross-sells and upsells are immense in the online travel business. Smartness is to use these elements to your leverage and present them to your target audience in a manner that they’re lured towards them. Provide offers which compel them to use your services and on the other hand help increase your average order value.
According to a “Hotel Amenities Travelers Can and Can’t Do Without” TripAdvisor survey, free Wi-Fi is the most requested hotel amenity with 89% of travelers wanting it, followed by free parking and breakfast.
However, you need to take care of two things when it comes to upselling and cross-selling.
Don’t offer an upsell option when a visitor is at the checkout stage. Try and not tell them what they don’t have and confuse them when they are about to close the deal.
Don’t auto-check the add-ons as a customer might not notice them at that point but would get mighty pissed when they see the inflated cost at the checkout.
6) Leave No Room For Ambiguity
Any information that is vague and open to a reader’s interpretation is a potential conversion barrier. The multitude of steps involved in the booking process is anyways a hindrance to smooth web experience.
Review all the information throughout the funnel for ambiguities. For example, when you ask visitors for their age, you might be showing them three options to choose from — kids, adults, and elderly.
Now you might think you have communicated yourself clearly, but what about someone who is 17? He definitely does not think of himself as a kid, and neither is he legally an adult. Or what about someone who is 59? An adult or an elderly?
Looking at their analytics, Expedia found that many of their visitors were clicking on the booking button but weren’t completing the transaction. They also found that an optional field on the booking form called ‘Company,’ was confusing people.
The visitors thought the field required them to enter their bank name. Having entered the bank name, they then went on to enter their bank address (not home) in the address field. This was causing the credit card transaction to fail. Expedia simply deleted the ‘Company’ field and reaped in higher profits.
7) Personalization is the Key
Personalization today has become a name synonymous to online shopping. And, that extends to travel websites as well. Irrespective of the fact that if a visitor is a first timer or your repeat user, everyone expects you to personalize their experience. You must make them feel valued, else they’ll leave.
Point being, personalization is the need of the hour. If you’re not encashing on it, you’re automatically losing out on a lot of potential leads.
To build a strong bond with your prospects and customers, you need to put in some extra efforts to show some gratitude since they entrusted you with their personal details.
As soon as a new user gets on board, you can send them a welcome email or push notifications and guide them on the most important sections of your site. The idea should be to make them feel like home. But keep it short, warm and actionable.
Some of your users always book a hotel that offers free wifi and complimentary lunch. Whenever they search for a hotel on your website, you can display recommended hotels that offer free wifi and lunch. Such personalized recommendations will help users to choose a hotel of their preference quicker.
If a traveler has booked with you and if there is a lot of consistency in their booking behavior — sea-facing hotels, family trips, spa and recreational activities — you can assume they are a leisure traveler and accordingly recommend similar travel experiences.
Using a personalization strategy to procure travelers’ booking history will help you offer relevant offers the next time they come to your website. The good news is that you could also track their in-session activity to understand their behavior and booking habits, a section covered later in this post.
8) Wear Nice Shoes
Men are judged by the appearance of their shoes. And, the authenticity of your business is judged by the appearance of your website. So, ensure your website’s UX is compelling and inviting rather than intimidating.
Furthermore, online frauds are the order of the day and visitors are ever more cautious about sharing their personal and credit card details online. Hence, it’s very important that your website oozes trust and authenticity.
Marriott’s homepage has a minimalist classy design which evokes credibility. When you are asking for their credit card information, display a security seal along with it.
Use testimonials, customer reviews, media coverage, and privacy policies to win the trust of your visitors.
The challenge for any online travel enterprise boils down to convince users persistently on each step of the conversion funnel. Tools such as heat maps, visitor recordings, and form analytics can help you in analyzing users’ behavior on websites effectively, which can become instrumental in increasing travel bookings.
So, there is never just one simple solution. You can improve your customer experience only through understanding the users’ pain points and providing them with the best solutions. Hopefully, they are never going to abandon you again.
The notion that building a fancy looking website and investing into marketing activities are more than enough to grab the attention of web strollers to convert them into leads. But, that’s precisely where most marketers are failing today. Lead conversion is not just about ensuring these “fence-sitters” pay a visit to your site, it’s about…
The notion that building a fancy looking website and investing into marketing activities are more than enough to grab the attention of web strollers to convert them into leads. But, that’s precisely where most marketers are failing today.
Lead conversion is not just about ensuring these “fence-sitters” pay a visit to your site, it’s about changing them into an opportunity, nurturing them, and converting them into loyal, paying customers. More so, understanding the basic needs of your visitors and creating an experience that’s compelling enough for them to come back for more, is equally important.
Before getting into the nitty-gritty of how to convert a visitor into a lead, let’s first talk about the importance of building a robust lead conversion process.
Building a Lead Conversion Process
Having a robust and streamlined lead conversion process is essential for any business to survive in today’s highly competitive market place. A good conversion strategy can not only boost your business dramatically but help to get good leads aboard. Below mentioned are five steps to building an effective and efficient lead conversion process.
1. Prepare Quality Content
Adding quality content to your website significantly increases the chances of getting more leads for your business. Write catchy website copies, create informative content such as blogs, ebooks, white papers, and work on product demos.
When you generate qualified content, it develops the trust of your customers and nurtures a healthy relationship with them. Their trust and relationship can indirectly generate good revenue for your business. So, tell your content team to produce engaging and converting content.
2. Build an SEO Strategy for Your Site
Visibility on Google can generate more leads to your business than you can imagine. So, investing your efforts in correcting your SEO strategies is essential.
Five primary SEO elements to focus your attention to include the page title, page URL, page header, internal links, and page content. Refer to Google updates to understand how to use SEO to rank high on search engines effectively.
3. Create an Appealing Landing Page Design
Your landing page design is the first and foremost element that defines the usability and success of your website. Having a good strategy of building landing pages can help to convert more leads.
Strategically add images, videos, and call-to-action buttons on your landing pages to make them appealing and get more conversion. Further, make sure all your landing page links are clickable and directly or indirectly help to generate leads. You can also use pre-designed landing page templates to improve your site’s user interface.
4. Use Social Media Channels to Generate Leads
Today people are massively engaged on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and many other ones. They consume more content here than on other mediums. Leverage social media to your advantage. Promote your business offerings here and grab the attention of your target audience.
Email marketing is an age-old inbound and outbound marketing tool that still serves as an effective medium to generate leads. You can design various email templates and send them to your target audience on multiple occasions, such as festivals or birthdays, to nurture them regularly.
The marketing tool not only helps build a strong relationship with your target audience but keeps them informed about your products and services as well. Furthermore, emails have proven to get more leads to a business than most other marketing tools.
Lead Conversion Best Practices
It takes nearly 0.05 seconds for a visitor to form an opinion about your brand and decide whether or not they’ll stay on your site. Capturing these micro-moments is what can convert your visitors into leads and customers. Below mentioned are eight effective strategies that you must use and implement to improve your lead conversion rate.
1. Learn to Capture the Right Market
To capture the right leads, understand the market that you’re operating in, and the behavior of your target audience. Use demographics (age, gender, education level, employment), geographic (location, address, region, country), and socio-economic (life-style, social class, personality, attitude) data of your target audience to show them relevant content and even incentivize them to convert into leads.
2. Segregate your Leads
As a business, you may generate tens and hundreds of leads every month. But, not all of them may qualify as good quality leads. So, as a practice, filter out all the leads that you think would be truly useful for your business and are interested in buying your products or services basis your business context.
Conduct thorough research on these leads, study their intention and interaction with your platform, check their last sales activities, and then establish contact with them. This is important because if your sales team attends to every lead that your business gets, they will not only end up wasting a lot of time but efforts as well.
3. Leverage Lead Scoring to Your Advantage
The lead scoring feature enables you to determine the value and importance of a lead. The higher the lead score, the better it is. Moreso, lead quality means shortlisting leads based on their ideal profile that can become a long-time converted customer for your business.
4. Establish Communication With your Leads as soon as they Convert
Leads are a fresh commodity to your business, which means you must nurture them immediately. Even a day’s delay can make them lose interest in your brand and probably shake hands with your competitor.
If you’re contacting them through a phone call, then be humble. Address all their concerns and queries, and ensure they leave satisfied. Ask them whether they’d be interested in receiving regular updates about your brand’s offerings, a demo call to understand your product(s) or service(s), and any other related thing. Show them that you care and are willing to do everything to get them aboard.
5. Use Effective Communication Channels
Deep dive into channels that are used by your prospects to engage with your brand. Try marketing channels like emails, cold calling, social media platforms, etc. to communicate with them.
For example, if your goal is just to increase your brand’s awareness in the market, then use channels like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Linkedin. These are apparently the best channels to increase brand awareness and generating leads. Pinterest and YouTube are two more marketing channels that can prove beneficial here.
6. Regularly Follow-Up with your Leads
Follow-ups are necessary to stay connected with your target audience. This gives them a sense that you care about their needs and are willing to provide them all the necessary services they want.
Don’t stop after sending one or two emails to your target audience or after that one-time demo call. Continuously follow up with them. Make them aware of your business’s offerings and highlight what makes you stand out.
7. Speed Up the Work of your Sales Team
It is always good to divide your sales teams into two divisions – one that handles all your existing customers and the other that takes care of all the new leads your business generates.
Also, make use of a good CRM system that helps you to monitor your prospect’s sales stages and other related activities. You can further have dedicated resources who can monitor and assign leads to different sales managers. This will help your sales team handle all your incoming leads and supervise their sales pipeline at every buying stage.
8. Highlight the Testimonials of your Happy Customer on your Site
Build the trust of your new customers by making them read through the testimonials of your existing happy customers. Add them on pages where visitors are most likely to read them, such as on the home page, pricing page, blog page, and so on.
To convert leads into loyal customers, you need to nourish and nurture them properly throughout their sales journey. Calculate your lead conversion ratio and be aware of their progress status to know where you, as a brand, are missing out in terms of converting them into customers. Be patient, work on your lead generation strategy, and make necessary amendments wherever needed to get positive results to your business.
The secluded and isolated deserted island setting has been used as the stage for many hypothetical explanations in economics and philosophy with the scarcity of things that can be developed as resources being a central feature. Scarcity and the need to…
The secluded and isolated deserted island setting has been used as the stage for many hypothetical explanations in economics and philosophy with the scarcity of things that can be developed as resources being a central feature. Scarcity and the need to keep risk low while aiming to improve one’s situation is what make it a […] Read More...
There are few key performance indicators that everyone focuses on for an e-commerce store: conversion rates, average order value and the number of monthly visitors. These metrics translate into money…
Please click on the title to read the full artic…
There are few key performance indicators that everyone focuses on for an e-commerce store: conversion rates, average order value and the number of monthly visitors. These metrics translate into money...
Please click on the title to read the full article!