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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.
The travel industry has experienced a great deal of upheaval in years characterised by swift change in customer habits and the impressive unwillingness of many companies to adapt.
To be fair, travel companies have come a long way in the past three to four years. Apps are now common place for airlines and some airports and travel websites are starting to adopt responsively designed websites.
In this post I’ll be taking a look at some recent studies into the mobile strategies of travel companies and airlines.
I’ll be pondering what the best approach is for these companies and whether in fact there’s no sense in avoiding apps or responsive websites, given their respective parts to play in the customer journey.
If you're a small to medium-size travel or experience brand, the following three strategies are sure to help you increase conversions and retention rates.
If you're a big player in the sector, take a look anyway. There might be a gap that one of these could fill or a little inspiration.
Either way, I hope you find them to be useful.
A satisfying mixture of cutting edge web design, charming images and delightful usability makes the Visit Suffolk website a joy to get lost in, as much as the county itself.
Did I sound too much like an actual tourist board there?
Possibly, but it’s genuinely difficult not to be charmed by this site. Offering an experience that is not unlike exploring any attractive UK destination. In my experience I’ve certainly not found a tourism website quite so captivating.
Come with me and let’s take a little wander around the east coast…
Ryanair was, and is, famous for many reasons; cheap flights, luggage restrictions, perceived sexism, a crazy boss, a refreshing approach to PR, and the list goes on.
All this might sound harsh, but it is thankfully all changing. Michael O'Leary has been all over Twitter recently talking about forthcoming improvements, particularly to the web, and luggage restrictions, too.
And today, via its Twitter account, Ryanair announced the first stage of its website rebuild, the homepage, is now live.
Hyatt releases its Q3 results today, so I thought I’d pre-empt the webcast and take a look at the company's digital efforts.
Is its digital marketing as good as the hotels? And how do its efforts compare to some big name competition?
It turns out Hyatt is fairly solid, online. I didn’t get mad trying to use the website, and everything was easy to find, with a good mobile presence.
To take it to the next level, Hyatt would have to redesign its website to match the modern design of RoomKey or Top10.com.
It would also be great to see more rich content on the Hyatt website, rather than simply its social channels. This would allow more of the atmosphere of the hotels and the ethos of the brand to suffuse the browsing and booking process.
Let’s have a look at the brand's paid, owned and earned digital content.