The introduction of an online booking system benefits different types of organizations and their operations. Most importantly, it plays a whole different role when it comes to scaling your travel business.
With travel nomads eager to explore different places every day, they are always looking for new travel and tour packages. As a result, they can find you and your travel services on the web one way or the other. But what if they find you late at night and can’t book for your service as your office is already closed?
Well, there you will realize that if you had an online booking system intact, you would have earned some customers for yourself. An online booking system not only helps you grow your business but also allows you to channel your services in a better way.
The main objective of an online booking system is to make sure your business runs 24 hours, every day. But that’s not all! The system also helps you with information security and improves your business credibility. Similarly, you get detailed insights into your business operations and stay as organized as ever.
In this article, we will list out 10 benefits of an online booking system for a travel agency.
Table of Contents
- What is an Online Booking System? How Does it Work?
- 10 Benefits of Having an Online Booking System
- 1. Your Business Remains Open 24/7
- 2. Online Booking Leads to Faster Payments
- 3. Decreases the Number of No-Shows
- 4. Offers More Information Security
- 5. Cuts Your Workload in Half
- 6. Increases Revenue with Upsell Add-ons
- 7. Increases Your Business Credibility with Better User Experience
- 8. Less Telephone Time
- 9. Offers Insight into Your Business
- 10. Helps You to Stay Organized
- Conclusion: Is Online Booking System Right for Your Agency?
- FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
What is an Online Booking System? How Does it Work?
An online booking system is an online tool that lets your guests self-book different travel and tour packages and pay through your website or other channels. In simple terms, it is considered the central hub for managing every aspect of travel companies.
Using the online booking and reservation system, you can sell your travel and tour packages online. But you’re probably wondering how it works!
If you run a travel agency, you first need an intuitive and fully functional travel website. To create the best website for your agency, you should pick the best one from different travel themes. Besides, there are a plethora of options when it comes to travel plugins that help you with setting up an online booking system.
For instance, if you are a WordPress user then we recommend you use the WP Travel Engine plugin. It comes with a smart booking process that is quick and smooth. The price gets automatically adjusted on the number of users selected for booking. Similarly, the booking form only includes the fields that are necessary, which ensures efficient booking.
Furthermore, the booking information gets saved on your website with each and every of your clients. As a result, you can easily access the booking details or information within a few clicks.
WP Travel Engine plugin also includes different payment extensions, like Midtrans Payment Gateway, PayU Money Payment Gateway, PayHere Payment Gateway, and Himalayan Bank Payment Gateway. These extensions ease up the online booking system as you can easily accept money from your clients for the trips they book.
10 Benefits of Having an Online Booking System
When you combine online booking technology with your fast and efficient customer service, your travel agency and travel business booms in no time. Here are the ten benefits of an online booking system for a travel agency:
1. Your Business Remains Open 24/7
The biggest advantage of an online booking system is that you can carry your business 24/7. The best part is that you don’t have to be awake all the time to carry your operations. The system handles the booking and reservation process easily, even without your full-time surveillance.
As your travel business remains open at any time, your customers can easily book a travel or tour package, and they don’t have to be physically available at your office. They can book or reserve your service from the comfort of their homes.
2. Online Booking Leads to Faster Payments
The online booking system urges your customers to prepay for the travel and tour packages that they want to book. As a result, you can enjoy faster payments, and you don’t have to take the burden of the payment due on the day of the event.
As we have mentioned earlier, the WP Travel Engine plugin supports different payment extensions like Midtrans Payment Gateway, PayUMoney Payment Gateway, PayHere Payment Gateway, and Himalayan Bank Payment Gateway. It makes it easier for you to receive the service fees from your customers.
On top of that, if your customers cancel your service after the given deadline, you can keep some of the money as compensation as per your policies.
3. Decreases the Number of No-Shows
Whether you run a travel agency or similar other business, being stood up by your customers can be bothersome. However, with online booking systems, you can easily minimize this bothersome situation.
Customers who make an online reservation are more likely to show up. If they neglect to read your cancellation policy and inform you at the last moment that they can’t make it, you will already have their credit card details on your hand. As a result, you won’t lose money for a last-second empty slot.
While decreasing the number of no-shows, the booking system helps you to maximize reservations. If a customer cancels a certain service, the spot automatically opens online for the ones who want to book for it.
Additionally, the online booking system allows you to set up automated reminder emails or text notifications whenever your customers make an online reservation. It makes sure that they don’t forget to show up for their booked service on the given day.
4. Offers More Information Security
Gone are the days when your business information is only confined to a desktop or a laptop. Thanks to the online booking system, you can easily store your valuable information on cloud-based storage.
Online booking system relies on highly protected servers to safeguard your information and service sales. Besides, everything becomes very easy to access when it is online. For instance, you can run your travel business from anywhere, just using the mobile app. You can just open tabs on your laptop or mobile and see how things are going, even when you’re on vacation.
5. Cuts Your Workload in Half
It is a daunting task to manually enter reservation and booking records when you have growing customers. Thanks to the online booking system, you don’t have to be chained to your desk as a business owner.
You can reach your home in time and spend weekends with your family while the system works for you. Whenever your customer books for a certain trip, the system itself collects all the required information and stores it safely for you. You can later check the day’s booking and reservation when you are free.
Similarly, an online booking system can help you save time by tackling mundane tasks, like sending confirmation emails to your customers, creating payment reports, and updating available travel packages. Everything runs smoothly in the background so that you can spend more time planning to scale your business.
6. Increases Revenue with Upsell Add-ons
Another crucial benefit of the online booking system is that it is very easy to create, publish, promote, and sell travel packages and add-ons online. You have the option to either combine them or let your customers choose the package they want. This process helps to increase your revenue.
The best thing you can do is to include options like photo packages or memorabilia in your online booking checkout.
7. Increases Your Business Credibility with Better User Experience
One of the major highlights of an online booking system is the way it simplifies the booking and reservation process. An efficient and quick service directly yields a better user experience. Thus, the credibility of your business increases on its own.
An online booking system speeds up everything from booking a certain travel package to payments and check-outs. Whenever your customers look to book a service from your agency, they can simply log in to your system and complete the process within a few minutes. Moreover, the system quickly sends a confirmation message to their inbox once the process gets completed.
Besides, you can also enhance your user experience by adding personalization. It helps to boost your communication with customers. You can use tokens in your automated emails or display relevant add-ons during the booking process.
8. Less Telephone Time
Sticking with only telephone service can be a big hassle if you run a travel agency. For instance, if your customers call your office to inquire about your travel packages but get routed to the voicemail, it’s not sure if they will call back later. The worst-case scenario: they may opt-out for their second choice.
So, only relying on a telephone service can see you lose your potential customers. However, with an online booking system, you can always make the reservations and information available so your customers can get everything they want on your website. This means that you don’t have to be tied to a phone all the time.
9. Offers Insight into Your Business
An online booking system allows you to have smart insights into your business. Since the technology keeps track of your customers’ every direct booking and reservations, you can see what travel packages make you the most money. Besides, you can analyze your customer’s behavior and find out what they are mostly targeting.
An online booking system offers you a dashboard of analytics that helps you grow your business. You can analyze the details and find out what you need to focus on to increase your clients.
10. Helps You to Stay Organized
As we have mentioned earlier, an online booking system is a central hub for managing every aspect of your business. It stores all the necessary credentials of your customers, reservations and bookings, packages, staff, and so on.
You have all information stored in one place. All you need to do is log in to the system and see a breakdown of your daily bookings. You can also analyze which customers still have to pay you for your service. Besides, you can leave notes for your staff on every booking so that they are aware of everything including travel costs.
Conclusion: Is Online Booking System Right for Your Agency?
As we have already mentioned ten benefits of an online booking system, you already know how beneficial it is for your travel agency. For increasing your work efficiency to earn you more customers, an online booking system comes with many advantages.
Besides, using this system, you can increase revenue while at the same time improving your business credibility. Once your business becomes more credible, it automatically attracts more clients. Given that, having an online booking system is a win-win situation for you.
If you want to read more useful articles regarding boosting your travel business, you can take a look at the following:
- How to Increase Traffic to Your Travel Website
- 10 Must Have WordPress Plugins for Every Travel Websites
Implement different strategies with the online booking system and let us know how it went in the comments section below.
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
Why do travel agencies now use the online reservation system?
Travel and adventure lovers keep on booking more and more at the last moment. Everyone can’t go to the office in order to book a deal. As a result, travel agencies need to have an online reservation system to ease up the booking and reservation system for their guest.
What are the various types of online booking tools?
There are a lot of online booking tools on the market. These tools differ from each other based on their features and functionalities. In general, you can get five different types of booking tools:
• Online travel agencies
• Online travel merchants
• Corporate travel booking tools
• Direct supplier websites
How can online booking tools help online travel agencies reduce travel costs?
Online booking tools can assist travel agencies in reducing travel costs by improving travel management. These tools offer travel managers the ability and strategy to integrate their travel policies directly into the booking tool. It saves travel companies money as policy compliance increases when it gets embedded in the booking system being used.
What is an Online Travel Agent (OTA)?
An Online Travel Agent is one who sells travel-related products to customers. These products can include hotels, airline tickets, car rentals, transportation, travel package deals, and so on. OTAs are generally third parties reselling these services on behalf of other companies.
OTAs are primarily important for hotels and they serve as both a marketing and a distribution channel.