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Audience survey at Hotelbeds’ MarketHub events reveals B2C travel tech challenges

06/13/2019
  • Over 700 attendees at MarketHub Americas and Europe events – made up of travel agencies, tour operators, airlines and points redemption partners – were surveyed on their technology views.
  • Only 18% of those surveyed felt their mobile consumer website “best in class” and only 24% have adopted machine learning capacity.
  • Many B2C travel companies in Europe admitted that their business has “no near future plans to embrace blockchain”, with only 11% having already adopted the technology.

Palma,  13th June 2019 Hotelbeds, the world´s nº1 leading bedbank, has today released details of the audience surveys conducted at its recent MarketHub Americas and Europe events held last May in Cancun and Istanbul respectively.

Participants at both MarketHub events – which were attended by over 700 senior representatives from travel agencies, tour operators, airlines and points redemption partners from across the Americas and Europe– took part in audience surveys digitally during the conference sessions. Attendees responded to a series of questions about their views and understanding of technology.

The results showed that whilst the B2C travel companies are aware of the importance of technology to drive growth in their businesses, nevertheless many intermediaries in the B2C space are struggling to respond to the challenges of new technology – and could boost their business by both improving their technology and their understanding of its benefits.

When attendees at the MarketHub Americas event were asked “How do you rate your consumer mobile website?”, 44% of respondents said they needed a little help, 23% said they needed a lot of help, 6% admitted they were awful in this area, and 9% admitted to not having a site. Only 18% felt their mobile consumer site to be best in class.

Additionally, the results showed that machine learning still represents a huge opportunity for B2C travel companies. Only 24% were able to confirm that their business was currently using machine learning, with 10% having plans to introduce machine learning and 6% having no plans. Interestingly, 38% weren´t sure if their business was using machine learning or not.

MarketHub Europe audience results showed that around 78% of the attendees admitted that their business has “no near future plans to embrace blockchain”, with only 11% having already adopted the technology and the small remainder planning to do so in the coming 12 months.

When asked about marketing automation in their business, 14% of the European event attendees didn’t know if their business was using it and 15% confirmed they weren’t using it at all; an additional 37% revealed they were only using the most basic of automation techniques, with only 22% feeling themselves “reasonably advanced” and just 11% feeling themselves “advanced”.

Carlos Muñoz, Bedbank Managing Director at Hotelbeds commented: “Part of our motivation for organizing these events is to gain an insight into the knowledge and needs of our customers, and these audience surveys are fantastic means of gaining instant feedback in a way that could never happen via an email or phone survey.

“For me these results show the role that providers such as ourselves play in the travel distribution ecosystem, supporting B2B travel trade buyers to help them respond to technological evolution and the ever increasing needs of consumers.

“Through events such as these and the experience and support of our in-house IT and product management teams, we supply our B2B2C customers with the knowledge and tools to remain competitive and profitable – whilst fulfilling the same role with our hotelier partners, to connect the two together seamlessly.

“For instance, our booking platform can have peaks of up to 3 billion searches per day, something few individual companies could cope with; so much data additionally gives us great insight into consumer desire, something we then feed back to our hotelier partners to make sure they are providing the right product, at the right price, to the right buyer, at the right moment. ”

The MarketHub events are an invitation-only, three-day event attended by some of the most important Hotelbeds partners from all the key markets across the Americas and Europe. Attendees range from senior executives and decision makers from tour operators, airlines, loyalty and point redemption businesses to leading travel agency chains and online travel advisors.

 

For more information about the MarketHub event, please visit 

https://themarkethub.com/americas/

https://www.themarkethub.com/europe/

 

About Hotelbeds

Hotelbeds is the world’s nº1 leading Bedbank.

In a fragmented and complex travel landscape, Hotelbeds provides over 180,000 hotels across the globe with access to high-value, complementary distribution channels that significantly increase occupancy rates and optimise RevPAR – whilst not competing with the hotelier’s direct distribution strategy.

Hotelbeds does this by offering hoteliers access to a network of over 60,000 hard-to-access B2B travel buyers such as tour operators, retail travel agents, airline websites, and loyalty businesses in over 140 source markets worldwide. These channels provide hotel partners with returning guests that book further in advance, cancel less, spend more in-destination and stay longer.

In addition to accommodation, Hotelbeds is also the world’s largest B2B seller of travel ancillaries, offering 24,000 transfer routes and 18,000 activities, as well as attractions, tickets and car hire. Operating under the ‘Beyond the

Bed’ product line, it provides both hoteliers and travel distribution partners with an efficient platform and powerful tools to easily integrate and commercialize its leading portfolio of high-margin products.

The company is headquartered in Palma, Spain and employs around 5,000 employees across over 60 offices globally.

 

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