Transcript of "If Only I Could Create the Perfect Travel Website (2008)"
If only I could make theperfect travel website Jason Till, Digital Production Director, Designate
It would• Know what I like • Alert me • – e.g. architecture, kite surfing, good • via a widget, gadget, or RSS feed food – and make suggestions when a deal which was relevant to me• Provide believable reviews appeared • from people like me • Know my budget• Have multimedia • but know when I’d be prepared to break it. • - a short video documentary of the • Know where I lived destination. IPIX and photo gallery• Show me an interesting events calendar • and be able to calculate the price of my train ticket to the airport and • which could be personalised to me compare this with different airport and integrate with my Outlook diary locations and the total holiday cost• Give me a map-driven itinerary • Provide group travel functionality • with local transport information which I • (which could integrate with Facebook). could download using to my mobile • Have a “wish list / shortlist” device, display on a map and share with other people by bluetoothing it to • which other people could login to and them – with GPS see and add to.• Be beautiful to look at • Be easy to use • Never break
There’s no such thing as the perfect travel website- but most of the functionality I’ve mentioned already exists across a number of them
Legacy systems canconstrain how travel sites work But you still have a lot of control over brand (selling, imagery) and usability
Today• A quick anatomy lesson• Audience research – what this tells us about what people want• The importance of the brand and communication• The (broken) customer journey• Some dos and don’ts• Building blocks you need, process and specialist skills
Basic anatomy of a home page Clearly-placed contact number Brand logo Hero shot with dealsSearch PromosNewsletterregistration Listed deals / offers
Behind the scenes it can be complex SEO Travel search Templates Booking CRM Booking Content Destination “Selling” Inventory Weather Events UGC Guides content Sign up Content XML / Webservice XML / Webservice XML / Webservice Management RSS XML / Webservice Secure Multimedia payment Email gateway 5 3rd party 3rd party 3rd party 3rd party 4 3 2 1 Analytics 3rd party 3rd Party data 3rd party
What is perfect?Traveller (generic) The challenge is to tie thesePrice Location Inspiration togetherFlexibility Rich ContentChildcare Choice E-commerce DirectorExtras Fun Optimised for SEO Data captureLuxury Conversion High marginDeals Low booking latency Low click to book Low cost of maintenance Performance Easy upkeep
Examining Travellers’ primary motivations Safety, security and privacy guarantees Family Childcare motivated Efficiency Flexibility 26% Control Unknown brand Compare/contrast Career results and details. motivated Social computing 43% Slow-to-load Web sites Audio, video, colour Elaborate Flash-based Virtual tours intro screens Highly impulsive – Not enough detail excellent target for cross selling and last minute offers – RSS feeds etc. Poor design Entertainment Too much text motivated 31% Source: Forresters Technographics Q2 2007 European Benchmark Mail Study” &Designate Communications
Travel research is among the most popular online activity Use free Web-based email (e.g., 50% Hotmail) Research holiday destinations 50% Prepare trips online (maps, directions) 48% Read news online 46% Use IM 40% Use reference sites 39% Look up sports information 28% Base: Online Europeans leisure travellers (multiple responses accepted) Source: Forrester’s Consumer Technographics® May 2007
European “Lookers and Bookers” are an elite group Offline leisure Online leisure travellers travellers Age 54 39 % Male 45% 53% Education (upper) 14% 37% Income (upper) 19% 41% # leisure trips/year 4.8 5.5 Base: Online European leisure travellers Source: Forrester’s Consumer Technographics® May 2007
New customer journey “Iterative Ideation” Looking Decided On location Back home a destination OR experience Travelling Travelling experiencing sharing memories research communicating thinking about Inspiration the next trip
Travel sector companies aren’t as good as they could be at selling online
“Advertising at its worst has been killed by the Internet”*• Sites don’t differentiate brands or tailor their product offering to suit people’s needs nearly enough• Competition is still largely focussed on price and volume represented as “choice”• As the research shows, customers want more*(Maurice Saatchi)
emotionalResearch has shown that strongonline branding increasespurchase intent but only if thesite meets basic usabilitystandards. Rational / practical
Design for the emotional and rational The company I buy leisure travel from Lookers 25% Trust -online than 2/3 need All More doesnt matter as much as getting the leisure Bookers 33% reassurance absolutely lowest fare/rate travelers Staying within my budget is more important 46% More than ½ could be inspired Bookers than going to my first-choice destination 37% to spend more I will pay above-average prices for better 31% 1/3 will pay more for quality quality travel products or service 37% I will pay more for travel products that save 36% More than 1/3 people will pay extra if the site can dynamically package and the me time and hassle 41% usability is good Price is more important to me than brand 50% An interesting split – shows that people will names 50% shop around if they don’t get what they want 46% You can attempt to get 2/3 of Travel is an area in which I indulge myself 65% people to indulging themselves Base: Online Europeans leisure travellers (multiple responses accepted) Source: Forrester’s Consumer Technographics® May 2007
Aligning user and brand Site effectiveness – Your Site efficiency differentiation – the Your “hygiene factor” opportunity the fundamentals User Emotional Rational / practical • Adventure • Where is it? • Escape • Who do I call? • Romance • How do I get there? • Luxury • Does the site work properly? • Spa • Is it in my price range? • Nightlife • Can I get a refund? • Sport • Culture • Food Brand Image Action (brand position) (brand delivery) • Is the proposition supported by the content? • Does the site support the user goals (e.g. book / register / • E.g. if it promises the “best holidays” is this search)? backed up by a an engaging, rich / rewarding user • Is the site language easy to understand? experience? • Are the icons and graphics easy to understand? • Does multimedia and imagery support promise? • Does it meet accessibilty requirements? • Is the imagery / layout / aesthetic appealing for • Does it display and the functionalitywork in all main browsers the target audience? • Language – tone of voice, clarity, lack of jargon.
Get the emotional proposition right - TheCreative Brief• What’s your proposition?• What are your objectives?• What’s the market insight?• What are the consumer insights?• What’s the single most important thing to say?• Reasons to believe (compelling truths)?• What do you want them to do?• How do you want them to feel?
… to creating an emotional proposition that resonateswith people’s interests• Kayaking • Gardens• Surfing • Country and• Kitesurfing coastal walks• Coasteering • Country parks• Mountain biking • Museums and galleries • Performing arts • Arts and crafts • Food and drink
Think about how the BBC hasrepackaged Ski Sunday• More lifestyle• More like Top Gear• Not just the racing and results• Placing normal people in the picture, not just super-athletes• More magazine-like – features on food, adventure, wildlife, trekking, training• More inclusive
Get the practical / rational stuff right: apply a user-centred designapproach and achieve true usability• Design for real people • Create personas (pen portraits) and think about their objectives • Use these to help model your route through the Website• Test your assumptions with real people• Increases ROI No single rule of thumb, but… • Case studies for e-commerce sites after a usability-led redesign have seen over 100% increase in revenue. • Investment generally considered to payback 10:1• Increase transactions / purchases• Increases traffic• Retains customers• Attracts more customers• Increases user satisfaction• http://www.usabilityprofessionals.org/usability_resources/usability_in_the_real_world/ roi_of_usability.html
Get it working in ALL main browsers 31/1/2008 W3 Counter.com
✗Unclear proposition – no anchoring ✗Confusing / unclearBrand logo statement or strapline ✗No emotive categorisation photography RSS feeds Contact Search✗ Menu 2 Xtoo long – Promosneeds to bekept to 6 or7 items forusability List of Deals Some “inspiration” (if limited)
✗ No brand positioning ✗ no strapline ✗ imagery could be better Brand logo Contact RSS feed Deals ✗ Benefits not soldSearch Socialboo k-marking Sign up Award Offers Inspiration
✗ no positioning ✗ no strapline ✗ limited imagery ✗ no sign up ✗ no differentiation ✗ no contact SearchBrand logo Deals RSS Offers
Inspirational “hero shot” Clear positioning ✗Text too dense –Simple needs tonavigation be brokenmenu up Clear layout; good use of imagery
Inspirational “hero shot” Good anchoring statement (if wordy) and good use of imagerySimplenavigationmenu ✗no deals ✗no contact number Clear layout ✗positioning could be stronger – maybe a strapline
Traditional Website MapAbout Contact Help T&Cs Home Search / Destination Deals / offers Reviews Booking results guides
Understanding your site within context of the customer journey will make your site work harder Inspiration Planning Share Booking Search Search Offers Experience results (detail) Group Booking travel Assistance Country form Browse pages Product (maps, pages climate, travel tips etc.) Online Call centre Promos Getting to a simple result can be complicated… Home Form Post Booking contents tour Flow to call Email Brief itin. How would centre you like to City pages book? Full itin. Maps CallbackCorporate Hotels Community T&C Jobs Press Create your Tours Photo / releases Dates own brochure Reviews reunited video gallery TelephoneGreen Openingissues hours Tell a Online Wallpapers friend Qstnre Call me User utilities Personal Insurance sales consultant Travel Currency Extras converter Your personal pages Pre holiday During holiday Post holiday Personal Family Hotel Items for Question My info sales and Day’s itin contact dist naire consultant friends details
Surface Visual design is late in theSkeleton process.Structure ScopeStrategy By Jesse James Garrett of Adaptive Path - http://www.jjg.net/ia/
How to get there Understand marketing objectives, targetaudience, benchmark the competition and Benchmarks create the proposition. and KPIs Discover Define Design Delivering the project Develop Iterate / apply learning Deliver Delivering the User Experience Surface Skeleton Structure Scope Strategy Apply to ongoing site improvement Create audience personas Testing, iterative Lifetime testing – pen portraits of people prototyping, focus groups
Key performance factors - usability• Is the essential content available where needed?• Is essential function available where needed?• Are category and subcategory names clear and mutually exclusive?• Does the site use language that’s easy to understand?• Does the site use graphics, icons, and symbols that are easy to understand?• Is text legible?• Are interactiveelements easily recognizable?• Does the site perform well?