REDWOOD CITY, USA - Clickatell, a CPaaS innovator and Chat Commerce company, revealed the results of its latest Chat Commerce Trends Report: Travel Edition, which uncovers new insights about how today’s consumers want to communicate and make purchases with hotels, airlines and rental car companies in mobile messaging conversations. The survey, which fielded responses from over 1,000 US participants, found 87% of consumers prefer to use mobile messaging to communicate with travel companies.
To deeply understand how consumers communicate with travel brands, Clickatell’s new research found widespread demand for personal and convenient customer experiences through messaging conversations, such as 92% of participants would like to use mobile messaging to interact with hotels, 89% would like to use mobile messaging to interact with airlines, and 85% would like to use mobile messaging to interact with rental car companies. Gen Z, Millennials and Gen X also all place mobile messaging as their top method of communication with travel brands, showcasing that younger generations are the most inclined to interact with brands via mobile.
The report also highlights that travel companies are missing out on a unique application of the mobile messaging experience: payments. In fact, 73% of consumers indicated that they have never made a purchase via an SMS payment link. However, with 77% of consumers saying they’re willing to use a mobile payment link with travel brands, there is a major opportunity for airlines, hotels and rental car companies to enhance the travel experience and allow consumers to browse, purchase and track their travel plans all on their mobile phones. 81% of consumers would likely make a purchase via a payment link with any type of travel company, with hotel reservations topping the list (58%).
Additional key findings include:
- 48% want mobile communications from travel companies at the time of booking, and 63% said within 24 hours.
- Consumers would most like to receive a message on the day of their trip with important information, with 60% of consumers wanting to receive a notification of any last-minute changes to their flight itinerary.
- 48% of consumers would like to book a flight reservation with an airline via mobile messaging
- Consumers would prefer to use mobile messaging with hotels (92%) vs. airlines (89%).
- For hotels, receiving a mobile message that your room is ready and requesting early or late check-in is the highest preference among consumers (58% want a notification that their room is ready and 41% want to be notified to upgrade their room).
- Hotel reservations and room upgrades are the highest preference for using a chat payment link - 58% would like to book a reservation, 47% want to upgrade their room.
- 54% of consumers would like to receive a message on the day of their trip with important car rental information, and 50% of consumers want to receive a notification of any last-minute changes.
- 71% of consumers indicated that they are more willing to make a purchase with a travel company through a payment link only after chatting with a live agent or automated bot.
- 27% prefer mobile messaging to communicate with a travel company (the highest of any category), while only 8% prefer to communicate with a travel company on website chat.
- 48% of consumers would expect mobile messages to begin at the time of booking, 63% would expect mobile messages to begin 24 hours before their trip.
- 80% of consumers say it is more convenient to use a travel desk via mobile messaging compared to other channels.
- iPhone users are more compelled to use mobile messaging with travel companies compared to Android users.
“By enabling communications and purchases for their customers in chat, Clickatell has opened the doors to convenience and personalization across travel brands,” said Pieter de Villiers, CEO and co-founder of Clickatell. “The data shows that there is an opportunity for travel brands to deliver services to their customers easily and conveniently via mobile messaging, which consumers desire and demand. Perhaps now more than ever, consumer loyalty is up for grabs and travel brands need to capitalize on every touchpoint.”