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Lesley's Column

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15th August 2016

How to drive online booking tool adoption

Simplicity is the key to driving online booking tool adoption. Travellers like an easy to use booking system which they likely compare to the retail sites they use for booking holidays.

It takes months of planning for the implementation of an online booking tool, and the test period is critical – the tool should be intuitive and simple to use.

A pilot group is key for testing and an audit of the tool should be conducted every time you upgrade technology or around every 12 months.

Consider doing the following to help drive adoption:

– Create one-click trip templates that include air, hotel, and ground transportation for the most frequently travelled locations. The templates will save travellers time and ensure their bookings comply with your company travel policy.

– Make travellers give a reason when they book outside the online tool or step outside of policy. Make this simple for them by offering a menu of ‘reason codes’ to choose from. Use these codes and your travel management company’s data to understand why travellers aren’t booking online. Then address those issues to ramp up adoption.

– Address non-compliance. If there are areas of your company not utilising the booking tool then create reports that clearly show how non-compliance is hurting their bottom line. You might generate regular department-by-department reports for your executive team that show the best and worst adopters.

– And in order to continually drive adoption, ensure you communicate effectively internally, keeping your travellers up-to-date and on board. Let travellers know how much they will save by booking online, preferably at the moment they are booking. Point-of-sale information can be very persuasive and make it easy for travellers to see the savings.