SAN FRANCISCO—Switchfly, a technology company that specializes in e-commerce and ancillary merchandising for travel merchants, has released a new industry outlook report that examines the role travel technology will play in generating revenue and brand loyalty as 2020 approaches. The Future of Travel & Loyalty Outlook 2020 examines how hotels and other travel companies can align technology, data, and inventory to create better user experiences and recalibrate loyalty strategies to ultimately transform travel and grow profits.
According to Switchfly’s CEO Daniel Farrar, the travel industry is experiencing a digital transformation and the opportunities for revenue and loyalty have never been greater. “The future of travel depends on the industry’s ability to re-imagine how it connects loyalty with data and inventory, so travelers can spend more on travel products and services that appeal to them—in less time and with less effort,” Farrar explains. “Those who are successful will present the right inventory to the right customer at the right time while building loyalty rewards and incentives right into the booking process.”
In the report, Switchfly analyzes the current state of the travel landscape, including the threats, challenges, and opportunities that hospitality companies face and how to overcome them. For example, new technologies like artificial intelligence and virtual reality will likely disrupt the travel ecosystem, strengthen loyalty programs, and give rise to new distribution models.
Another key insight from the report is the “platformization” of travel and the recommendation that companies view the industry as a holistic, interconnected environment for e-commerce to drive revenue. Another theme is the evolution of travel distribution channels and the content offered across those platforms. The growth in mobile e-commerce underlines the importance of companies creating technology-rich, engaging user experiences. Additionally, New Distribution Capability (NDC) and a shift in data management could enable hotels to bypass legacy systems.
“For travel loyalty, success lies in adding value beyond the price of a room or ticket,” Farrar continues. “There is a bigger connection between travel loyalty, travel technology, and revenue generation that suppliers and distributors must consider going forward—and the opportunities are ready for the taking.”