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Is investing in your own app worth the cost?

Posted by Sara Napier Burkhard on Jan 26, 2017

From business professionals to students, these days nearly everyone is using a smartphone. They have revolutionized the way we entertain ourselves, communicate with the world around us, and ultimately, how we conduct business.

For some businesses, it might not be enough to simply have a mobile-optimized website. Investing in an app is quickly becoming a necessity for a number of industries and travel is one of the most influential in this area.

But how can you tell if it makes sense for your business? And is it worth the expense?

First, you need to know which type of app could help your company. Two of the most common used in the travel industry are business-to-customer (B2C) or business-to-business (B2B) apps. Tour and activity companies can increase their efficiency with either one or both, but each may have a different value. 

So while not every company will benefit from the same things, there is a solution for everyone. We hope that this simple guide can make it easier to distinguish which would be most useful to your business. 

smartphone app

Business-to-customer app

A B2C app is one that is designed for your customers to use. It is especially helpful for a company that wants to build a large-scale operation. The companies who most benefit from investing in an application like this are the ones that represent multiple cities or activity types.

In the case of SANDEMANs New Europe, they are an innovative walking tour company. They host an extensive network of tours in nearly 20 cities with hundreds of guides. They organize their offerings with a good website and a streamlined app for their customers.  

SANDEMANs NEW Europe
SANDEMANs NEW Europe offers a large network of tours in 18 cities 

A great option to create a similar offering for your customers is to invest in a white label app. This is an app that is developed for your business and then designed to fit the exact needs of your customer base. To learn more about TrekkSoft's white label app solutions, set up a demo call with one of our team members. 

Who do we recommend this for?

  • DMOs
  • DMCs
  • Large enterprises, offering a variety of interests that include accommodation, tours, and activities, especially as separate entities. 

From a TrekkSoft customer:

"We have expanded quite a bit in the last couple of years; we now operate tours in 18 cities. TrekkSoft has made it easy to manage our bookings across all our locations. With our new mobile app powered by TrekkSoft, our customers can book with us in-destination!"

- Chris Sandeman, SANDEMANs NEW Europe

Business-to-business app

A B2B app is one designed to make your business operations smoother. This isn't seen by the customers, but works as a tool for you and your employees. 

As a tour provider, the cost for having an app like this built is often more affordable than a B2C app. This makes it an ideal option for businesses of all sizes, from sole enterprises to companies with 30+ employees.

It can be built to suit your industry, but for tour and activity providers a good backend app should be directly connected to your website, calendar, customer list, and rental inventory. 

Mobile app

Having a backend app designed for your business offers an endless amount of productivity for small tour and activity companies. It is designed to help make your business life easier, and help you manage your day-to-day operations at a glance. 

Who do we recommend this for?

  • Smaller companies with a limited number of employees 
  • Tour guides who want to see their guest lists, scan ticket barcodes, or quickly adjust the day's schedule
  • Accommodation providers
  • Activity providers that rely on certain weather conditions, such as paragliding companies or surf camps 
  • Companies who arrange rentals like bicycles, kayaks, or Segways
  • Multi-day tour providers who need to take their administration panel with them anywhere they go

 

From TrekkSoft's development team:

"I always recommend the backend app... That’s your admin panel, simplified"

-Lukasz Porebski

In summary, an app is worth the investment for any growing tour and activity provider, especially those who also need to manage rentals and accommodations. Whether a B2C or B2B app is right for you will come down to what your company is looking for. 

What ultimately matters is that your company is accessible to your customers online. Regardless of the scale of your business, you need to have a website that is easily found, easy to use, and ready to receive bookings.

 

For more information about the online solution that's the best fit for you, TrekkSoft is ready to chat.    

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Sara Napier Burkhard

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.

Topics: Business advice

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