Booking systems have revolutionised the travel industry. They help run your tour, activity and attraction businesses by taking care of bookings, vouchers, confirmations, marketing and distribution. It’s possible when you first onboarded a booking system you might have picked what was right for you at the time. However, businesses change and technology advances and then reduces drastically in price, meaning you could have outgrown your current booking system. These 8 signs will help alleviate or confirm this suspicion.
1. Confirmations aren’t automated
It’s 2016! If your online bookings do not result in an automated email or text of confirmation, it’s time to find a better system. This will cut down on hours of manual labour costs and eliminate the chance of human errors in the confirmation process.
2. You can’t display your real-time pricing and availability
This feature saves your customers and your team a lot of time. Giving customers visibility of your availability means they don’t have to check via call, eliminating unnecessary steps. It can also create a sense of urgency and push customers to book sooner rather than risk missing out.
3. Managing promos, seasonal pricing and discounts is a nightmare
You should have one central location to update or set your pricing. If your current system makes you update your pricing in multiple places, you risk making an error. If you’re distributing through multiple channels, this needs to be quick and simple adjustment. If this sounds familiar, it might be time to move on.
4. There is no voucher and promo code management
Managing vouchers can be a logistical nightmare for all staff. Your booking system should have the functionality to manage these codes for you, no matter through which channel the the client purchased their ticket. If you’re experiencing this headache with your system in place, move on!
5. Manifest management is still manual and causing brain strains
Manifests are a legal requirement for many tour businesses. Does your business still manage these in Excel? Newer and more advanced booking systems can handle all this for you. Once a customer is in the system they can automatically be added to the manifest, which can then be exported into an excel spreadsheet if needed.
7. You’re not sure if the way you’re taking payments is compliant
Did you know how much compliance there is regarding taking online payments through your website? Sadly there are booking systems out there that do not meet PCI compliance requirements and that could be absolutely devastating to your business and brand if you fell victim to this. Your booking system should make it incredibly clear you’re meeting all the legal requirements.
8. You’re unable to get valuable insight into where sales are coming from
Newer booking systems will give you a 360 degree view of your revenue streams. This is incredibly important and helps you make the best decision on which distributors and marketing channels you should be focusing your attention.
Innovation has turned plain old booking systems into revolutionary platforms that give business owners a 360 degree view of their business. While technology has progressed so has competition, meaning the cost of onboarding a booking system has reduced from what it was a few years ago. If your booking system is a little older and possibly not meeting modern-day requirements, it might be time for you to consider moving on.