The changing demands of the modern customer provide a consistent push for evolution in the travel industry, particularly when it comes to customer service and the expectations businesses have to fulfill.
In short, today's traveller is an empowered customer, one who can take research, bookings and more into their own hands 24/7. Travel organisations strive to cater to customers across multiple channels and whilst at present, the majority of these may well be with a human agent, we expect bots to be used much more in a customer service capacity over the coming months.
However, for the time being, if you are looking to make excellent digital and social customer service synonymous with your brand for the empowered traveller, here are a few ways to do it:
1. Availability when and where it's needed
Travellers want to be able to access urgent assistance in the exact moment they need it. Mobile technology has created a culture of immediacy, so if a flight is delayed or a hire car hasn't shown up, customers need support across a variety of channels without delay. Live agents, available around-the-clock, or bots that can lighten the load by answering basic FAQs or completing basic transactions spell speed and convenience to the modern traveller. Be the brand that delivers.
2. Responsibility and transparency
This is the age of the millennial traveller and with 72% of this golden demographic prepared to spend more money on experiences than material items, it makes sense that the industry has sought to cater to their demands. To this end, it's worth bearing in mind that millennials crave authenticity from brands – if something goes wrong with a booking, they not only expect you to make it right, they expect you to hold up your hands and take responsibility for the error. This is a key area where travel businesses can transform negative experiences into positive interactions. Don't try to cover up a mistake with spin – the empowered customer will sense it and your reputation will take a hit.
3. Apps a-plenty
Apps are proving a popular method for travel brands to serve their customers easily and efficiently. From checking in for a flight, making room service requests and checking all manner of travel itinerary details in real time, apps are on the up for brands keen to make life more convenient and time-efficient for customers as well as free up their own staff to take care of other duties.
Quality customer service is the foundation for an enhanced consumer experience, high retention rate and increased loyalty amongst customers.
Amongst our range of digital solutions, designed especially for the travel industry, we offer a virtual travel assistant chatbot to help take your customer service to the next level.