'The rise of the smartphone' might sound like the title of a Hollywood disaster movie, but the trend offers nothing but opportunities for the forward-thinking travel brand. Mobile is constantly changing the way that consumers research and arrive at purchase decisions, and in this age of instant gratification, travellers are using their mobile devices increasingly in real-time to meet a variety of immediate needs along the purchase funnel.

Catering for the mobile consumer does not simply begin and end with optimising your website - instead, carefully targeting customers at key points along the mobile journey spells the best chance of success for your brand.

Recent research from Google found that when it comes to travel planning, the consumer's journey is peppered with what they have termed 'micro-moments'. These are moments of immediate need where people turn to their mobile devices looking for a solution which could have a profound effect on their decision-making processes.

Google found that whilst 40% of travel site visits were coming in from mobile, the length of those sessions had decreased by 5%. When you team this knowledge with the fact that mobile conversion rates are 10% up, we can conclude that travellers are reaching for their mobiles more often yet in shorter bursts in order to make their decisions. It's in these micro-moments that the travel brand must strike.

Key micro-moments in the mobile journey

Google's research further broke down the concept of travel micro-moments into four distinct categories:

• The 'I want to get away' moment occurs as consumers look for inspiration.

• The 'time to make a plan' moment happens when travellers are looking at the details.

• The 'let's book it' moment comes once the research is complete and people are ready to seal the deal.

• The 'can't wait to explore' moment occurs when the trip is in motion, as travellers look for new experiences and share them with others.

So, how can travel businesses take advantage of these micro-moments?

Google found that nearly three-quarters (72%) of smartphone users agreed that when it comes to researching on their smartphones, they look for the most relevant information over turning to a relevant company or brand.

To be in it to win their business, travel businesses need to ensure they are there in the right moment. Developing an excellent SEO strategy will give your business the best shot at showing up in travellers' searches whilst providing stunning content can provide inspiration for their trip. Make sure information is easily accessible throughout your website and your booking platform is easy-to-use and perfectly optimised for mobile.

Fortunately, an award-winning mobile booking platform is just one of the many digital solutions we can help you with. Want to know more? Contact us today.