Weekly Roundup #3: Travel, Tech and Social Media

Week 3/2019

Happy Friday and welcome to our Weekly Roundup! Once again, we gathered some more interesting content for you. So make sure to take a look before heading into the weekend, we have fresh news and stories from the travel and hospitality industry! Also, don’t forget to follow us on social media for even more updates Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram!

Until the next time, enjoy your weekend!

 

Industry News

TrustYou’s 2018 Year in Review:

January is the perfect time to step back and analyze the year that just went by. 2018 was an inspiring and impactful year here at TrustYou thanks to our employees, clients, leadership, and partners. We’ve set a new record analyzing 132 million reviews (!), we’ve achieved a 97% satisfaction rate; we celebrated our 10 year anniversary; and we’ve unboarded new clients, partners, and team members. We’ve also renovated our blog and content hub, where we’ve released new studies, eBooks, best practices, and more. It was an amazing year and we can only hope for 2019 to be even more successful. Make sure to take a look at our “Year In Review,” for all of our favorite moments and important highlights that make us who we are.

Phocuswright Study Shows Independent Hotels Are Concerned With Growing Costs of Third-Party Reservations But See Metasearch as a Solution:

trivago has partnered with Phocuswright on a study that explores independent lodging properties in the current online marketplace. Results of the study reveal that metasearch is increasingly delivering both visibility and direct bookings to independent lodging properties, but critical issues such as third-party dependence and tech-adoption barriers remain. Nearly two-thirds of independent properties now receive direct bookings from metasearch and almost 90% intend to maintain or increase their use of metasearch for visibility and bookings in the future. However, in the online environment, OTAs still play a very important role in most markets, with revenue shares for 2018 projected at 39% in the US and 45% in Europe.

Despite Challenges, OTA Bookings Continue to Climb in Europe:

Online travel agencies operating in the European travel market find themselves in an interesting position in 2018. On the one hand, these intermediaries have been instrumental in the maturation of the region’s online travel marketplace, and the key players in the category are household names among European travelers. Despite the challenges, OTA bookings continue to climb in Europe. In 2018, the supplier-OTA channel reached €47.9 billion. Modest growth is projected for the next several years, as OTA bookings grow at roughly half the pace of the supplier-direct channel. More specifically, in terms of OTA channel distribution, growth has become uneven; while desktop bookings are projected to be flat for the next few years, OTA mobile bookings are projected to skyrocket. By 2022, more than a third of European supplier-OTA bookings will be transacted via mobile websites and apps.

 

Trends and Insights

Guest Surveys - Do’s and Don’ts:

As our studies uncover, asking for feedback from a hotel guest is the best way of receiving valuable insights into their experiences as well as getting a more positive review. However, before venturing into the world of guest satisfaction surveys, it’s essential to know the best methods of customization to encourage genuine responses, while also emphasizing the most relevant and important areas related to the guest journey. In this best practice guide, you will learn the DOs and DON’Ts of designing smart surveys and how you can apply them to your future strategies in order to ensure the best possible outcome.

Most Welcoming Places on Earth, According to Booking.com:

Based on the share of properties receiving an award in 2018, for the first time ever Booking.com reveals the most welcoming places on Earth, according to customer reviews. The most welcoming countries are: Austria, Czech Republic, Poland, New Zealand, Taiwan, Romania, Hungary, Ireland, Serbia, and Greece. The most welcoming destinations are Goreme (Turkey), Slunj (Croatia), Eluanbi (Taiwan), Niagara on the Lake (Canada), Lake Tekapo (New Zealand), Bendigo (Australia), Newport (United States), Nozawa Onsen (Japan), Fernando de Noronha (Brazil), and El Chalten (Argentina).

How To Have The Best Trip Ever: Travel Tips for Africa:

Africa became one of the most popular vacation destinations in the last few years and Happy Luxe turned the spotlight towards this beautiful continent in this insightful article. They say that if you’ve never visited the “Motherland” continent, you should forget everything that you think you know. A well-planned trip to Africa is a trip you will never forget, and one that can’t be replicated by visiting anywhere else in the world. When it comes to traveling through Africa, there are no better tips than those that come directly from people who have spent time there personally! For this article, 8 frequent travelers were asked about their experiences traveling through various countries in Africa, so check out what they had to say.

 

Technology

How Cognitive Technologies Might Evolve in Travel in 2019:

The latest Deloitte report says the technology enables travel brands to change existing processes, streamline operations, and create "smart workforces." Cognitive technology is within the field of artificial technology (including machine learning, natural language processing, and speech recognition) and is able to carry out jobs that up until now have been done by humans. The Deloitte 2019 U.S. Travel and Hospitality Outlook says that the mix of operations carried out by and between people combined with the unpredictability of traveler preferences and travel patterns presents opportunities for cognitive technology in terms of insight, automation, and engagement. The report points to airports as an example where cognitive insight can be employed to analyze data across various sources, help avoid delays, and ultimately improve the passenger experience.

Halo Travel Unveiled to Bring Booking and Payments via Voice Assistant:

Payments specialist WEX and technology provider AI.io have partnered to launch a voice-activated travel booking service, known as Halo Travel. The pair claim Halo Travel, which is powered by Priceline Partner Network for inventory, is the first application that allows the booking of hotels and flights through voice. The application does not depend on a particular device and is accessed via Google Assistant by saying “Hey Google, talk to Halo Travel.”  While AI.io provides the voice technology, WEX handles the payment from Halo Travel to the Priceline Partner Network. Comparisons will no doubt be drawn with Google Assistant’s latest updates enabling hotel booking via the Book on Google integration, with providers including Choice Hotels, AccorHotels, InterContinental Hotels Group, and Priceline named as initial partners.

Laura Badiu

Laura is a passionate bookworm and a gifted writer. Since joining TrustYou’s marketing team, she has embraced topics in the travel and hospitality sector with enthusiasm. Using her degree in Journalism, Laura creatively weaves words into insightful stories with a focus on reputation management.

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