3 UX Recommendations for Travel Websites & Apps During Covid-19 Restrictions

Evan Navon
Written by Evan Navon
June 23, 2020

Of all the sectors impacted by Covid-19, the travel industry has arguably faced the most significant challenges. Flights around the world have been grounded, and with countries introducing lockdowns and quarantines, tourism – as well as business travel – has come to a virtual standstill.

With travel companies typically experiencing more cancellations than bookings over the last few months, how can digital teams best organize their websites and apps accordingly? How can you ease the stress customers may be experiencing during this sensitive time, and respond to their needs in ways that foster brand loyalty for the future?

We’ve been keeping a close eye on user behavior throughout Covid-19. We’ve already discussed what we found in retail, and now turn to the 3 key trends we’ve spotted on the digital properties of our travel clients. Find these patterns, along with our recommended responses to them, below.

Trend #1: Travelers are showing strong interest in Coronavirus FAQ pages

Recommendation: Prioritize communications or FAQ pages that clearly state how your organization is responding to Covid-19, and disseminate valuable information to customers.

As is to be expected, travelers are eager to understand how their plans might be affected by lockdown rules, and how travel companies are operating across different countries at this time. It’s therefore recommended to serve users this information clearly and early in their browsing experience.

In order to back up this observation, teams can use Decibel’s suite of attribution, dot, and behavioral heatmaps to identify areas of high engagement. In particular, Decibel’s ‘Reading Behavior’ heatmaps help pinpoint where shoppers display the most reading behavior, a mouse-based movement indicative of strong engagement. Decibel’s Engagement Score, meanwhile, enables you to compare the performance of any one page to other pages, or a group of pages to another group to compare engagement performance.

Trend #2: Travelers need information related to bookings, re-bookings, scheduling, and vouchers

Recommendation: Ensure that CTAs and content related to bookings, re-bookings, scheduling, and vouchers are easily visible and are high on the page.

When it comes to the coronavirus-related information travelers care about most, we are seeing a large focus on anything about bookings, re-bookings, scheduling, and vouchers. We therefore recommend reassuring travelers about those particular services first, before divulging any other key information.

Within Decibel, this observation can again be surfaced using behavioral heatmaps for reading behavior and engagement, as well as attribution heatmaps that rank the important of elements to particular user segments.

ecommerce heatmaps

Trend #3: Travelers expect various options to contact support

Recommendation: Include contact options beyond just a standard phone number to include options like Facebook messenger and WhatsApp messenger.

We’ve seen a big uptick in demand for newer support channels during Covid-19, such as Facebook messenger and WhatsApp messenger. Within the travel industry particularly, such channels are in high demand, something companies should accommodate, and that digital teams should promote clearly on their website or app’s support pages.

Within Decibel, attribution heatmaps remain your friend here, clearly visualizing the levels of engagements for various contact options.

Anticipate traveler needs, and respond with empathy

In this new world of increased digital dependence, the quality of the online experience is more important than ever. For travel companies, this means getting ahead of the game and anticipating and responding to traveler needs as and when they occur online.

Decibel surfaces poor online experiences automatically, so digital teams at travel companies like TUI, Radisson Hotels, and British Airways can quickly understand and fix them. Interested in seeing how it works? Get a quick demo here.

Alternatively, if rather than technology you’re looking for strategy to aid your optimization efforts, we’ve put together The Ultimate Guide to Optimizing Digital Experiences for Enterprise, which distills the wisdom we learned by analzying top-performing enterprises. Hit the banner below to access it now.

Topics: Analytics, Behavior, Travel, User experience
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