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Creating a Good Reputation as an Online Travel Agency: A Brief Guide

Creating a Good Reputation as an Online Travel Agency: A Brief Guide

Reputation plays an integral role in deciding how far a business can make it. In the travel and tour industry, the importance of reputation increases manifold. The bad reputation for a hotel, resort, or airline translates into significant tangible losses. On the other hand, a good reputation can set off a financial turnaround and enable a travel enterprise to stand out among the competition.

The same goes for an online travel agency that primarily depends on the digital medium to reach out to consumers. Online travel operators use the power of the internet to set up and grow their businesses. But they must know that this power cuts both ways. If it helps them to start a viable travel enterprise at a lesser upfront cost while accessing a wider audience, it can also lead the charge to hurt their business courtesy bad online reputation.

Therefore, maintaining and boasting a good reputation is a lifeline for online travel agencies. They can't turn their budding start-ups into established and successful ventures if they are not mindful and proactive in maintaining their reputation.

This post will walk you through some tips and measures you should consider to harness a good reputation for your online travel business.

Be Aware of All the Platforms Where Customers Can Leave Review

An online travel agency can't only bank on its website to acquire customers. It has to use various promotional channels across the internet to reach out to potential clients. While using these channels for marketing, you also need to be mindful of all the customer feedback ending up there. Don't just use Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to run paid ads. Check them regularly for customer feedback. Many people use SM platforms to leave reviews about their experience with a travel agency.

Moreover, regularly check your Google My Business profile and attend all those customer reviews that command a response. Also, keep an eye on local online travel forums and business directories to see what customers have to say about your service. Another way to find out customers' thoughts is to search your travel agency's name on Google and take a quick look at what's being said about your travel packages, pricing, and service quality.

Being oblivious of customer feedback, queries, and complaints is the first step towards creating a bad reputation for your travel business. On the other hand, being mindful and aware of that aggregate customer response paves the way for harnessing a good reputation.

Be Responsive and Promptly Reply to Queries and Bad Reviews

Being aware of what customers have to say about your travel business is not enough. You also need to be responsive, particularly to queries and bad reviews. Starting from good reviews, you need to thank the customers for using your service and ask them to keep coming back to you. You can also plug a discount or promotional offer in those replies.

Then come queries— you must answer all the legitimate questions being asked regarding your operations. These queries can be either from existing customers or potential clients looking for a travel agency. Leaving those questions on reading doesn't reflect well on your business. Not only will it turn away the ones asking those questions, but it can also put off the others sifting through your profiles and seeing all those unattended questions and queries.

You Can't Sweep Bad Reviews under the Rug

Travel businesses like to respond to positive comments and general inquiries. However, they remain reluctant to respond and reply to bad reviews. By ignoring bad reviews, you can't just make them disappear. A bad review lingering on the feed with no follow-up doesn't only make you lose that one traveller. It can make a bad impression on hundreds of other potential travellers and tourists as well.

Don't Take It to Heart

Many people believe that dumping bad reviews is just a nefarious design by their jealous competitors to stain their reputation. However, that's not the case. Different surveys and reports suggest that most bad reviews are left by consumers who are willing to engage with the business and expect the rectification of the mistake or improvement of the service.

If you encounter a bad review that contains some legitimate critique, unconditionally apologize and offer some compensation. It could be a fractional refund or a discount offer, or a complimentary service on the next trip/booking. This corrective reaction might help you retain that disgruntled customer. Users seeing your apologetic and redeeming response to bad reviews will also form a good perception of your business.

All Is not Bad with Bad Reviews

Don't fixate over bad reviews. No matter how good your travel services are, there will always be some bad reviews. Interestingly, bad reviews are not all that bad for two reasons.

  1. They let you know about the shortcomings and weak links in your operations and service delivery.
  2. They legitimize the good reviews. If users find no bad reviews about a business, they get suspicious of the authenticity of all customer reviews. A bad review here and there ensures them they are reading real customer experiences.

Develop a Proactive Approach and Set Some Goals

Only relying on customer feedback to develop a good reputation is not enough. You also need to take some proactive measures to improve your reputability. Offer loyalty offers, associate your business with a social cause beyond lip service, and use your social media for organic and unreserved user engagement instead of just leveraging it for hardcore marketing.

A robust travel management system is also indirectly linked to the reputation of an online travel agency. A good travel management system allows operators and agencies to run their operations smoothly, which eventually translates into a better customer experience and a good reputation.

TravnetTech can help you with all the critical digital resources required for running a successful travel business, including a travel management system. Our experts can also help your new travel agency set up your enterprise's digital front and back office.


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