Nearly 64 million travelers — 30 percent of the U.S. adult population — used the Internet in the past year to get travel and destination information. Of that group, 44.6 million actually booked at least one travel service or product online in the past year.”The Internet has put consumers in control of their plans and they like it. They’re able to gather all the facts they need and compare prices and options to obtain what they feel are the best deals possible,” according to Dr. Suzanne Cook, senior vice president of research for the Travel Industry Association of America.It used to be that resort destinations dominated the local travel scene because they had the most money to market and advertise…more
This is all certainly true, but has it become radically easier to buy travel online?
Research also shows a sense of disappointment by many online travel buyers at the lack of true one-stop shopping functionality, especially on destination sites that are often visited first and from where the path to buying often becomes more cumbersome than fun.
Improved technology and integration of eCommerce in the mostly promotion oriented destination sites will be necessary to increase future conversion rates. This goes beyond mere linking out to all sorts of partner sites. It requires truly integrated reservations, booking and purchasing functionality on one destination site.
The level of fun for online travel shoppers should increase significantly once that becomes the reality – and the revenue stream for these often financially strapped organizations would make a welcome contribution to their limited marketing budgets….!