Category Archives: Get Booked

5 Ways to Increase Shoulder Season (Direct) Bookings

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Shoulder Season Booked OutShoulder Season. Definition: Noun. The time of year right before and after high season when the weather is still favourable and tourism operators worldwide want more bookings. (Also: shoulder period)

With some forward planning and tactics before your shoulder season starts, there are tried and true strategies to stretch out the peak season and boost bookings.


1. Create a New Inclusive Package

Offering the ability to have an “easy to book in one click”, all-inclusive package motivates bookings. Create a multiple day stay with tickets to a local event, or negotiate a favourable rate with a local activity and/or restaurant.

Besides adding the package to your website and booking engine, add it to your business listing on TripAdvisor and be sure to promote on all online...

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TripAdvisor - Trick or Treat?

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TripAdvisor Trick or Treat

Part III in our Halloween 2015 blog series.

As the world’s number-one tourism website, TripAdvisor is an audacious and powerful beast. For travellers sharing a review or researching a trip, it works a treat. For tourism operators it can prove a powerful marketing and distribution tool. But for all of these treats, this powerful beast can serve up a trick or two.

Handling Reviews

Since anyone can post a review on TripAdvisor, it can create some scary situations for a tourism operator. Travellers threatening a negative review as an attempt to get a discount, competitors purchasing fake reviews to boost their rankings, or a sinister traveller who is simply miserable about life and uses the platform to constantly complain.

Some operators believe fake or venomous reviews are...

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Five Ways to Increase Direct Accommodation Bookings

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5 steps to more direct bookings

Online marketing is forever evolving. Four years ago we would frequently give advice to accommodation providers on how to increase their bookings by optimising listings on online travel agents (OTAs) like Booking.com. These days our conversations revolve around how to increase direct bookings to their own websites, partly to avoid paying the OTAs commission.

Ultimately, the best way to do this is not by changing anything on your OTA listings, but by taking a look at everything else you are doing online. Here are five ways to help achieve this.

Take a good look at your website

Open up your website and imagine you are a first-time visitor who has never seen your business before. Ask yourself, can you immediately understand from your homepage what you are selling and why you...

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Thinking Differently About Tourism

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Yes, yes, we know: we are living at a time when 'things' are changing faster than ever. We are reminded of this every time we buy the latest phone, tablet or computer only to be told six months later (when we have finally learned how to use it!) that it is now “the old” model.

And the point is truly highlighted when considering the fact that 60% of the jobs available in ten years don’t even exist yet.

As individual tourism businesses, organisations and an industry as a whole, it is imperative that we are keeping up with changes, and not just surviving but actually thriving. Thinking differently is required by all of us, as what has worked in the past may not work in the future.

“Trendlines not Headlines”

Stealing a quote from Bill Clinton, “consider trendlines not...

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Online VS Offline Purchase Patterns

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In a recent report, Google ventured outside of their current online domain and did a study to compare online travel purchase patterns to offline travel purchase patterns. The number of similarities between the two types of buyers provides compelling information that every tourism business owner should know.

Getting right to one of the most amazing facts derived from the study: 90% of both online bookers and offline bookers do their research online. You read that right, 90% of travellers do their research online before booking whether they purchase online or walk into an agency to book in person. Understanding the full value of a travel business's online presence has never been demonstrated so definitively.

Research starts on average 70 days prior to purchase. Both types of buyers use...

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How are your relationships?

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Relationship advice in an online marketing article? Absolutely. Today, having a website, a brochure and working with your agents is no longer enough. You put time and effort into ensure the agents you work with are happy with your product and that you are romancing them but what about your online relationships?

facebook-experiments-with-star-ratingsSocial media and review sites like Trip Advisor can make or break a business. An online distribution strategy based on paying commissions to Online Travel Agents (Expedia, Booking.com) is mono dimensional and eats away at margins. Having a Relationship Strategy can serve your agents, increase your online reputation to give potential guests assurance, build customer loyalty and thus increase bookings.

Sucking Eggs

So I am not trying to teach your grandmother to...

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