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Customer experience is about relevancy.
Many providers of services are finding that generational relevancy is a new factor they need to consider and one that likely requires a good deal of investment.
It's not prudent to avoid investment and hope that being a second or third mover will keep your digitally-demanding customers just sweet enough.
The fact is, if you improve the customer experience without even changing the service you provide, customers will be happier. They'll think they're getting more for their money and they are.
I'll give an example. First UK Bus introduced mobile ticketing in spring 2014. There's an mticket app on which tickets can be bought, stored and activated. For those of you not in the regions of the UK, these buses were often cash only (smart cards, similar to London's Oyster, are yet to be rolled out).
Here's why this mticketing works and why more companies should be moving sooner.
What is travel?
Airbnb is certainly trying to define it, with the message that inclusion and community make for memorable experiences. We shouldn't stand for standard, the homogeneity of a hotel chain.
The internet in general is encouraging a fightback again corporate globalisation (though perhaps these are simply our death throes?), with everything from homespun craft available through Etsy and crowdsourced cycle routes on Strava.
I watched John Kearns perform recently (a storytelling comic that won the Edinburgh Comedy Award) and he had one line designed to show how much he wanted to return to a more personal world.
He spoke about seeing tourists in the more garish areas of London promoted by guidebooks, such as Picadilly Circus, and how he wanted to talk to each of them and tell them about the really niche and beautiful parts of London, often tucked in neighbourhoods that tourists never make it to.
I'm getting to the point here. lastminute.com has produced a lovely piece of content designed to show parts of London that only the discerning have discovered*. It's called 100 Things in London and it's a nice bit of content marketing.
Let's take a look and I'll attempt to point out why it should go well.
A cracking week this week, with a smorgasbord of statistics, from Android fragmentation to tablet games and eBay sales in the wake of Hollywood blockbusters.
Get stuck in, but don't forget to check out the Internet Statistics Compendium for more online marketing figures and charts.
We've got so many beautiful stats for you this week.
From native advertising to online TV, paid search spend to site search conversion, social media in travel to banking online. Please enjoy and share at will.
For more online marketing statistics, download our Internet Statistics Compendium...
As a blogger, I have a responsibility not to get personal and not to write with righteous indignation.
However, I also have the pleasure of being able to write about experiences I have had that bear on digital marketing and ecommerce.
After my stag do this weekend, I lost my paper return train ticket from Devon to London and had to pay for a new one.
In my opinion this revealed a disjointed multichannel offering because lost paper tickets cannot be reissued, but mobile tickets effectively can be (by logging into an app on another mobile device).
So what can we learn?
This week Ryanair revealed its Labs project, an innovation lab based in Swords, Dublin, with a remit to reinvent the online travel industry.
There's a Labs website and the company is recruiting for 200 staff.
On the page of the website titled 'Why work for Ryanair Labs?' I was struck by how much the reasoning echoed many of the points Econsultancy has been discussing around digital transformation and company culture.
Let's take a look.
Google is making many companies nervous. Anything bought online that involves the collection of information naturally falls into Google's path.
Even outside of this large niche, Google is getting stuck into larger engineering projects like the self-driving car.
Let's take a look at industries ripe for disruption by Google.
Virgin America's new website manages to turn booking a flight into a joyous process.
That tells you all you need to know about how good this website is.
Here I've picked out 30 good bits. I urge you, of course, to read this post, but go and check out the website yourself for some great design inspiration.
130 dedicated social customer care employees, social payment for customers, flight attendants supplied taking social enquiries offline, an updating Twitter header displaying average response time.
These are some of the elements of KLM's social customer care that make it world beating.
Let's have a closer look, courtesy of Robertjan Groenveld, social media hub manager at KLM, speaking at Socialbakers' Engage London 2014.
Premier Inn has topped the latest Multichannel Benchmark study from eDigitalResearch, which compared 17 online travel websites and their respective desktop sites, mobile sites and mobile apps.
According to the research, the UK hotel brand scored well across the board, but excelled in terms of booking process, design and usability.
It’s been a good year for Premier Inn’s digital transformation. Last April David Moth reviewed its new iPad app and found that its “stripped down design and simple usability” made it a useful tool for business travellers.
The owner of Premier Inn, Whitbread, has also attributed its use of social proof as part of the reason why profits rose much higher than analysts’ predictions last year.
Here’s a look at the eDigitalResearch benchmark, followed by our own thoughts on Premier Inn’s multichannel win.
With 71% of customers expecting assistance when stuck within five minutes, high rates of abandonment, and a diverse range of platforms from which customers can speak, it has never been more important to listen to the voice of your customer.
Indeed, we have collected nearly 1.5m handwritten nuggets of information from almost 400 sites.
So, what niggles the modern day holiday maker? What prevents them from converting? And, most importantly, what can you do to keep them from journeying away from your site and into the arms of your competitor?
Search results pages on travel sites should help customers to find the best deal for them without having to work too hard.
Last year I looked at a range of search tools from travel websites, which highlighted the importance of flexibility when users search for travel.
Time spent searching for flights recently has reminded me of the value of excellent search results pages, and here I look at several examples, good and bad.
For this I'm looking at flight search, but the lessons apply equally to hotel and general holiday search.