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Tim Peter

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June 4, 2013

Why Travel Marketers Must Think Mobile Right Now (Travel Tuesday)

June 4, 2013 | By | One Comment

Mobile experiences will get betterI feel like I’ve been beating this to death lately, but for all the talk about how big mobile’s going to be, its ridiculous growth rates, and what it will do to your conversion rates, I don’t know that I’ve ever said why it’s so important (apart from the obvious reasons, of course).

So, here’s why.

Today, mobile represents 15%-20% of web traffic for many travel businesses (revenue/sales data is a bit harder to come by, though Booking.com has shared that its 2012 mobile booking revenue tripled from $1 billion in 2011 to $3 billion last year).

That share is growing. Even Google has said, “all the growth currently being seen [in travel search] is from mobile and tablet.”

And, today, the mobile experience your customers face is, well, generally pretty crappy.

No. Really.

But here’s the thing. It’s not going to stay crappy. Lots of very smart people are out there, right now, working hard to improve that customer experience. Some of those folks are your competitors.

They’re doing this work at the same time that mobile continues to steal share from “traditional e-commerce.” Sadly, that 15%-20% isn’t all additive. Sure, some is. But not all of it (and, don’t forget, it’s not going to be 15%-20% a year or two from now).

Now, pretty soon, one of those very smart people is going to get the mobile experience just right.

So, you’ve got an emerging channel, representing an increasingly large share of your business, that also presents a ripe opportunity for someone to come in and swipe your customers. Sure, maybe only 15%-20% of your customers, but, still…

When you put it that way, it seems like something really worth paying more attention to, doesn’t it?

Because, you can be sure, that’s exactly what Google is doing. And intermediaries. And anyone else with a vested interest in getting between you and your customer.

Now, if any of this sounds familiar, it should. We all just watched the exact same movie over the last decade-plus with the Internet. History, in fact, repeats every once in a while. The difference here is, you know how it played out the last time and probably don’t want to go through the exact same experience again.

And that’s why mobile matters so much.

Interested in learning more about multi-screen, multi-channel marketing for hospitality — as well as lessons that apply to a host of other industries? Register to receive a special report I’ve produced in conjunction with hotel marketing firm Vizergy, “Digital Hotel Marketing in a Multiscreen World.” You can get your free copy of the report here or use the form below to receive yours today.


And you might also enjoy some of our past coverage of mobile, including:

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