The Google-BSG report’s estimate of a buoyant growth at the CAGR of 11–11.5% in the Indian travel landscape showcases a sizeable growth opportunity for travel agencies.
But with lower margins, high cash burn out and severe competition from behemoth online travel booking (OTA) websites, growing a travel agency business is nothing short of a challenge.
Like in any business, the right mindset and smart strategy can steer the odd in your favour. Here are some tips that can help you build your travel agency business like a Pro.
1. Engage Online Customers on website or App
The Google-BSG report states that 62% consumers make bookings through their mobile phones. Evidently, customers look for the digital presence making a travel booking. Therefore it’s imperative to build an attractive website or App that is updated with precise and relevant content.
Needless to say, your website should be responsive to different devices including mobiles, laptops, desktops, tablets, etc. Further, it’s crucial to optimize your site for Search engines to enable users to find your website easily.
Creating dedicated customized web logins for individual and corporate clients is a great way to offer customers a personalised experience, offer customised deals, and increase engagement.
2. Stay Active on Social Media
Recent statistics show that 57% of consumers rely on online channels for better deals. Resultantly, your activities, content, and brand personality on the online turf influence your customers’ decisions to a great extent. So, focus on the media where your target audience is most active and create interactive, relevant and engaging content on those platforms.
Word-of-mouth is the best form of advertising. Hence, apart from your own content, user-generated content can be a big plus for your brand.
How to go about it? .
Images speak a thousand words. You can also encourage users to share reviews as well as photographs related to their holiday experience.
3. Offer Value Added Services
Today, customers has multiple choices at their fingertips. Hence, to make your offering stand out, it’s vital to offer Value Added Services (VAS). You can provide these services by building your in-house capabilities or by way of associations and affiliations.
VAS allow you to extend tailored travel solutions to your users, and further help in strengthening customer stickiness. These may include sending travel advisories or curated holiday plans based on their preferences.
You can also leverage on business loans to expand additional suite of services, and make a smart investment in building a loyal customer base.
4. Get Instant Access to Credit
In the pursuit to grow your travel agency, it is quite evident that you would require funds from time-to-time. Whether it is for promoting your brand, introducing VAS or building technological capabilities to offer personalization- monetary investment is a prerequisite.
Like many other emerging SMEs, you can avail of terms loans and working capital loan options from credible lenders we at Indifi can help you scale your travel business to new heights. We can help you with loan upto INR 50 Lacs which you can use in availing cash discounts by paying upfront or on time, extend credit to customers, pay off vendors or meet seasonal demands.
5. Build Relationship with Customers
Since word-of-mouth is the most dominant customer offline advertisement for your service, make sure your customers are happy to put in a good word about you. Offer personalized attention and add a human touch to the service offered to customers who are not too comfortable with online search engines and app-based bookings.
Take measures to convert your periodic customers into loyal and frequent ones. In this endeavor, it is essential to think beyond business and create a rapport with them.
Dive into the world of personalization using technology and sell experiences not just services. Be unique and put your customers first.
6. Extend your B2B Network
A strong association with a network of leading brands of hotels, airlines, and cabs, can help you offer an end-to-end solution tailored to the customers’ needs. A reliable B2B network is a key to providing seamless travel experience to your customers. Build a relationship with other partner travel agencies to leverage on their unique strengths and offer an unbeatable travel offering.
Running a travel business is indeed an arduous task. The present business scenario offers both opportunities and threats. Take the right call at the right time to keep your business abreast of the latest developments in the travel world and ride the wave of growth.