As we have entered 2017, it would be useful to enter the year with a plan for success. The only way to create a great plan for the future, is to look back and remember the valuable lessons learnt.
Looking back on 2016, what worked well? What didn't? How many website visitors did you have, how many bookings were made through your website, your partners, or agents? How about your social media, what was the engagement like?
Above all, what can else can you improve in 2017?
I'd like to show you how to identify areas to improve your business using data from the following reports and analysis.
Which reports and data should you consider?
Your website analytics
Your website is your most important gateway to your audience. Normally, your customer makes the first contact with you directly on your website, either by looking at your tours and activities or by booking a tour with you. You can track these key actions using Google Analytics.
Important key factors that you should keep in mind when analysing your website:
- Visitor demographic: Who visits your website? Where are they from? How old are they?
- Page views: Which webpages get the most views?
- Pages per session: According to Google, "A session is a group of interactions that take place on your website within a given time frame." So, how many pages do people check out each time they visit your website? Also, what is the average time spent per session? The longer a visitor spends on your website is a good indicator of their interest.
- Bounce rate: What's your bounce rate? A high bounce rate indicates tat your visitors don't stay for every long which could indicate that they're not finding the information they want on your site.
- Unique and returning visitors: If you have many unique (or new) visitors, then maybe a marketing campaign has worked well. If your website has many returning visitors it speaks for interesting content. Always look at the results of your website in connection with other marketing campaigns to see what works well and what not.
It's important to collect data on the actions your visitors take on your website. Consider other key indicators like the tours they booked, the blog posts they shared on social media, the CTA buttons they clicked on, and so on.
- Learn the basics to Google Analytics with this article.
- Improve your tour and activity website with these 10 tips.
- Increase conversion and get more bookings by creating powerful Calls-to-action.
Your own booking system
The best insights you will get about your business will come from your own booking system. Here, you'll see who has booked a tour or activity with you, and which partner, reseller or agent has sold the most tours for you.
TrekkSoft offers numerous types of reports which will provide you with the all the key pieces of information for you to get a good overview of your business.
- Sales, turnover and cash flow reports
- The sales reports show you the total sales based on a certain period of time and the channels (agents, partners, etc.) they were sold through. At the same time you see which bookings belong to these sales numbers, including participants and the net sales.
- While sales are based on the date of the booking, the Turnover reports are based on the day of the trip, regardless the date the customers has booked.
- The Cash Flow reports shows which of your partners and agents made what booking.
- Vouchers, inventory and ticket scans
- The Christmas and holiday seasons are a great opportunity to push voucher sales. Here you see the exact number of Vouchers sold and which Vouchers have been redeemds.
- Additionally, you also get an overview of your Inventory. Which tours, activities and physical resources (like canoes and diving equipment) get booked up the most?
- The ticket scans give you an overview of all redeemed tickets, showing you which trips were taken, when it was taken and by which partner or agent.
Antoinetta Grosjean, Product Manager Interlaken Tourism
Your social media reports
On your social media channels like Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, you learn a lot about your visitors and also how they engage with the content you share. To get the most out of your social media marketing, it is important t know how your audience is responding to them.
With Facebook Stats, it's really easy to see the exact reach of your posts, the number of posts you have and if your posts have prompted responses such as likes, comments or shares.
In order to test what sort of content is best for your audience, you should consciously experiment with different types of content and incorporate them into your social media strategy.
Here are a few examples of differet types of content:
- Travel trends
- Travel or destination guides
- User generated content about your tour or activity
- Promotional content with discount codes (perfect way to kickstart the season)
Your newsletter reports
How do you communicate with your customers? Apart from social media, you can also send them newsletters. Here are some metrics you should keep an eye on:
- Where are your newsletter subscribers from? Are they mostly locals or travellers from abroad? You can tailor your content to suit the demographics of your subscribers.
- What's the open rate for your newsletters? How often are people reading the stuff you send them?
- What is the click-through rate? How many people are clicking on a link or a button you've included in your newsletter? You could include a discount code they can redeem, share your content with friends and family, or watch the Christmas video your company made on YouTube.
It's important that you draw the right conclusions
Without drawing the right insights, your reports and data is worthless.
Look objectively at 2016's figures. Which platforms brought you the biggest success and which platforms were pointless.
Write down your success moments and be honest about your failures. If you're unsure, look at your data, those numbers won't sugar coat anything.
Now take a step back and look at your analysis. What can you improve in 2017? What aspects of your business do you need to work on to stay successful?
With a clear understanding of your business, it is easier to create realistic goals and strategies to ensure that 2017 becomes your most successful year ever.
What did you think of this article? Did you find it useful? Let us know in the comments below!
Get exclusive insights into the tourism industry and start the year right with our 2017 travel trends report.
Written by Franziska Klein
Franziska studied tourism and geography and loves to travel mainly across Europe to discover beautiful hiking spots.