Some of the pain points for travel agencies are processing sales and working on the operational tasks which result from a successful closure of a deal online. There is a lot of scope to simplify their operations through modern technologies. This will free up their team to concentrate on the core of the business.
While developing their own technology may seem like an intuitive solution, it is actually very complex. A superior way is to rent a SaaS (Software as a Service) technology so you can spend your time and energy on your core.
Few travel players have identified the key to a modern 2020 website that attracts, converts and retains users. The surprising answer to this dilemma is to build less. These businesses need to focus on their core, while they partner with tech providers who can help them upgrade their website via SaaS models.
These models should help travel agencies connect to APIs so they can have ready versions of key components of their websites and operations, such as accessing to more travel products or distributing their own products to the rest of the world.
This brings us to the question: if technology is not the core of travel agencies, what is their competitive core? And, how should they approach modern technology to deliver exceptional results?
A great travel agency should deliver outstanding travel experiences: from plain transfers to tour and hotel selection, to helping the customer understand their incoming trip all the way to helping on potential changes and /or updates. Your selection of travel options (airlines, hotels, packages, tours, etc.) should be excellent, at the same time, match the needs and expectations of your clients. This forms the core business of a travel agency.
When it comes to technology, the job of a travel agency is to identify the right one for their clients. This strategic consideration, on its own, is not easy. For example, if you acquire and close your sales online, then focus on web technologies. However, if you get closures via one-on-one conversations with luxury clients, perhaps your website is not as important as the logistics and conversations you will need to close the deal and deliver the personalized service.
But even in this case, to have an easy conversation with this client, you need a simple workflow (paperwork) executed through a modern CRM, and available lines of communication to be accessible to this client. Each travel agency should recognize its real need. The actual technology challenge is to identify, rent and implement the best one for you and your clients.
3 Reasons to Rent & Not Develop Travel Technology
The simplest reason is that travel agencies need to focus on their core: selling tours and experiences to travelers, and delivering that service (even if it is through other partners). This is to ensure travelers will continue to book from you. If you are not convinced that this is your core, and are interested in developing your own technology, ponder over these three reasons why not to do so:
1. Selecting the Technologies is Already Hard
Focusing on identifying the technologies you will need is task enough. Do this instead of developing it. Product discussions are not easy. Technology moves fast, and it is hard to identify what to develop, how to go about it, which platform and coding language to choose, which APIs to connect with, and also which ones to avoid.
The more you outsource, the less you need to spend time understanding the intricate world of travel technologies and connectors, which is quite complex. Getting to know the map and the ecosystem of technologies available on rent should be the aim of all your interactions with technology providers. Your next priorities should be to understand how to implement the technology and use it to the max. All of this is already taxing. Don’t waste more energy on the sophisticated development.
2. Developing Tech Requires Money, Resources & Time
You will probably measure the cost of launching an entire technology of your own in dollars, but make sure to include the time it will take you to develop it. Without exaggeration, it would take a full year and various engineers to develop your systems. Instead, you could purchase White Label solutions and install it in a few weeks.
You might pay a seemingly expensive monthly fee. But when compared to the cost of self-development (months/years), plus the time lost on potentially selling with already advanced technologies, we guarantee you will be saving money.
3. It Costs to Maintain Self-Developed Technology
After you’ve fully developed a technology, you’d think you don’t need to spend more on engineering work, so you can save against the cost of a monthly payment to SaaS services. Guess what? Your technology will require maintenance. Imagine one of your partners have now updated their platform, and there’s a lot of maintenance to be executed. As new technologies advance, your platform will also need to keep up.
Instead, you can outsource all of this to your SaaS providers, who would be doing it for several clients at once. All of this, while you focus on your core. Challenges like maintenance will keep you busy on the engineering side forever, while you could be executing more sales, and delivering a better service.
Today, even the big travel agencies have understood that mastering technology doesn’t mean developing it from scratch. Rather, it is being great at selecting the best technologies. Most flexible technologies today offer APIs, SDKs and CMS products.
If you think you need to rent this kind of travel technology for yourself, at Arrivedo, our aim is to provide your company with a digital transformation of their travel experience through our interactive route technology. This effectively translates to superior experiences for your customers. You can boost online user engagement and delight visitors with a unique online journey, watch a FREE demo, here.