A survey at the World Travel Market (WTM) show has revealed that the vast majority of the travel industry’s executives (89%) regard XML web services as significant for revenue generation, yet as many as 37% travel organisations don’t monitor their XML web services operations.
In the research conducted for XML services business intelligence (BI) provider, Triometric, more than 100 global executives in management, marketing, sales, operations and IT roles were asked to define what levels of business intelligence they can currently gather from their online businesses.
An astonishing 60% cannot monitor their live look-to-book ratios, the travel industry’s key conversion metric.
More than half (53%) cannot capture demand information through analysing their search traffic to manage their inventory and almost half (49%) cannot analyse the demand from all their online channels to undergo market analysis.
From the survey, 84% of the travel industry’s leading influencers claim that their organisations would benefit from improved intelligence on the nature of their online searches and bookings.
Jonathan Boffey, Business Development Director at Triometric explains, “Online travel revenue is about converting free searches to paid bookings, so analysing your search traffic and your responses, by client or destination for example, means you can start making decisions that will positively impact your revenue.”
In terms of supplier management, less than half of participants (48%) use search traffic to analyse supplier performance. This is an indication that organisations are failing to understand how well their demand is being satisfied and whether they are losing opportunities due to insufficient inventory, operational issues or quality of choice.
This lack of insight also dramatically affects the front end and customer revenue assurance. Of those aware of their supply and demand leakage, 35% admit to taking a week or longer to notice a change in revenue from a key customer.
The Triometric survey is particularly poignant for travel companies involved in dynamic holiday packages where flights, hotels, car rentals and insurance products are sold by different suppliers under one contract.
It found that more than half (52%) of respondents are unable to review individual XML bookings for audit or dispute resolution. While one quarter (25%) of the interviewed organisations are planning to implement technologies to help them gain more business insight for the above categories, the knowledge gap widens between slow adopters and the industry’s market leaders.
Chris Anders, Director of IT Operations at GTA Travel, explains how it is ahead of many, “From our 50 million requests a day we get real business intelligence that tells us what our client behaviour is. We understand what people are searching for in terms of destinations, holiday duration, how in advance people book and what they are looking for in terms of stars or class.” Anders continues, “We are using this technology every day to resolve problems with clients and for trend analysis. Real time availability of this information is essential to stay competitive in the industry.”
GTA Travel uses Triometric’s Web Services Analyzer to monitor high value XML web services. It has a unique ability to report right down to transactional level, crucial for managing global operational performance, providing business intelligence (through XML content analysis), aiding capacity planning and enabling other business processes such as dynamic pricing.