Each customer has their own idea of what their trip should look like. Today's traveler is looking for an experience that feels authentic and one of a kind. One of the best ways a tour or activity provider can do this is by offering a customizable tour.
But that's a lot of work. Building standard offers to fit your existing audience is challenging enough, without adding custom requests into the mix. It can be a lot of paperwork, and several hours spent planning over Excel sheets, your calendar, and every productivity tool you can get your hands on.
But there's a simpler way. In this article we'll talk about how TrekkSoft can help you create the tailor-fitted tours your customers are looking for.
1. The (custom) customer is king
We're going to talk about how to make custom offers convenient on both you and your customers, but first let's have a look at who those customers are. From intricate coffee orders to clothing with a distinct style, consumers today are used to having options. They're used to making decisions about what they want and exactly how they want it, and they have the spending power to call those shots.
Brands know this, and the successful ones have thought about how to accommodate the customize-fitted kings and queens that make up their customer base today. The answer? Personalization options.
In a recent study by Boxever for Skift, it was discovered that even personalized marketing makes an impact, as 8 in 10 consumers surveyed said it affects their purchasing decision. In addition, personalized options are said to increase conversion rates by 10-20% and increase revenue 3-7x per visit.
According to a recent report from Accenture, 75% of consumers are far more likely to buy from a company that recommends options based on past purchases or recognizes them and 77% of consumers have chosen, recommended, or paid more for a brand that provides a personalized service or experience.
In other words, customers want the option to choose for themselves and they will go somewhere they can get it.
2. How TrekkSoft can help
Creating a customized offer will require an understanding of what your customers are looking for. Unlike your standard offers, there's no one-size-fits-all option when it comes to personalization. You will need input from your customer, and unless you are able to sit down for several hours each week with every customer you receive, that's going to be hard to manage without an online solution.
Start with customer inquiries with the Inquiries feature
With TrekkSoft, you can do more than simply manage your regular bookings online. You can hear directly from your customers and organize their custom requests in real time. We offer a feature called Inquiries*, where they can reach out to your company through your website to make a request for an activity that doesn't exist in one of your pre-set packages.
For example, let's say you're a guide in Luzern, Switzerland. You have a customer who wants to take your standard city tour, but they've also heard about how beautiful the nearby Pilatus mountain is. With the Inquiries feature, you can create a space that allows customers to ask about this extra activity that would take them beyond your standard offers.
In the standard way to use the feature, customers request their activity and if you have the resources, expertise, and time available you can accommodate their request. It works a lot like an add-on because you're the one who creates the extra offers. So in the example of the tour guide in Luzern with city-focused tours, you can add a custom inquiry for tourists who want to go on the Pilatus mountain as well.
*This feature is available with our Professional price plan and higher.
Customers can also write in their requests. In this case, instead of a standard inquiry, customers can add a custom field and fill out their own request. But it remains organized in the system and you retain control of the offer because you can determine if you have the ability to accommodate the request. Once the Inquiry is sent to you, you will be able to review it and approve, deny, or discuss other possibilities with the potential customer from there.
If you've accepted the request, a Custom Activity booking can be made to allow you to create a voucher with the updated price. This new item also won't have a preassigned schedule attached to it, so you will be free to build your schedule as needed. With this feature, you have an easy way to build custom tours without taking valuable time away from managing your regular tours and activities.
3. Get inspired by other businesses
At TrekkSoft, we know that there is no such thing as one-size-fits-all for tour and activity providers. That's why we're delighted to offer tools and resources to companies of all sizes worldwide.
Some of our happiest customers are those who needed a tool that could work with their unique ideas. In the case of Bastimentos Alive, founder Tom Pelgrum was looking for something that could give him the edge on local competitors and help him turn his love for the location into a profitable business.
For DMC Terrandes Adventure, it's all about creating personalized services that can entail everything from finding the best local cuisine to crafting tours that are made to measure. And for WildSicily, their need was figuring out how to create the most authentic experience (including the purchasing) while keeping up with a modern audience.
- Spotlight: the magic of adventure tours with TrekkSoft customer WildSicily
- Spotlight: Terrandes Adventure, a DMC offering personalised tour experiences in Ecuador
- Spotlight on Bastimentos Alive and what it's like to start your own tour company
You can read more stories like this here.
4. Build a better network
In addition to a mobile solution, calendar, and booking engine, there are a number of other smart ways to save yourself time and paperwork.
Work with OTAs and other distributors. Marketing a custom tour can be a challenge. You don't fall in one perfect category so trying to get your business seen by a larger audience might not come as easily as a standard tour structure. But by working with an OTA, you can use a company's marketplaces to gain a wider distribution. Read about other distribution ideas here.
Stay active with third-party review sites. Did you know that nine out of 10 travelers think reading online reviews is important? Some of the best companies to work with as a tour provider are review sites. We've already shown you how to build a stand-out profile on TripAdvisor, but you could also look into sites like Google Reviews or Stride Travel.
In summary, TrekkSoft can help you manage your offers, sell them online, and distribute them to a wider audience. Which means you can have all the success, with less paperwork (and no more paper cuts).
How can TrekkSoft help shape your custom fit? Schedule a personalized demo call and find out.
Written by Sara Napier Burkhard
Sara is a writer from the American West Coast. In recent years, she's written for companies like Hipmunk, iTourMobile and Mylikes. She now resides in Zurich, Switzerland where she finds new adventures and attempts to speak German with minimal success.