Start the Tourist Experience Before They Book: Our 10 Best Tips

You’ll know it’s essential to start the tourist experience before the customer buys from you if you run a tourism business. 

Yes, that means having a great website that showcases everything your business has to offer. It’s also essential to make sure your website is user-friendly and easy to navigate

Establishing Authority in the Tourism Industry

With mass tourism returning, establishing trustworthiness and authority while offering a tremendous contemporary tourist experience is challenging. However, by following these ten tips, you’ll align consumer and managerial perspectives and upgrade your tourism practices.

The experience economy is booming, with more visitors seeking an authentic tourist experience. If your website can provide that level of authority before a customer makes a purchase, you’re likely to make the sale.

Read on to see how we can help you develop a marketing strategy that builds your business fast.

1. Get to Know your Tourist Clients Before They Book

It’s essential to get to know your tourist clients before they book. That means understanding what they need from your tourism services. Once you know that, you can cater to their needs and provide them with the best tourist experience possible.

What kind of tourism literature suits them best? What experiential aspects of a holiday are the most popular? How important is sustainable tourism to the tourist consumer experience?

These are the kinds of questions you need to answer before providing a fantastic tourist experience. 

Reading tourism studies can be a valuable way to understand the theory behind visitor engagement. However, you can take five practical steps to understand consumer behaviour better.

Data Collection Techniques for Tourism Businesses:

  1. Mystery shopping feedback
  2. Focus groups
  3. 1:1 interviews 
  4. Repeat booking data
  5. Destination feedback

By understanding your tourist clients, you can provide them with the best possible experience from start to finish.

2. Research Tourist Destinations and Use Local Knowledge 

lonely planet travel tips

Promoting great tourist trips is a great way to start a tourist experience early.

Carrying out effective tourism research should play an essential role in your marketing strategy. Learning about the local culture at each of your tourism destinations and becoming an expert on tourist sites is critical.

Know the popular tourist destinations well and promote what makes them unique. Also, use local knowledge to dig deeper into lesser-known attractions that interest tourists. Once you have this information, begin planning how you can incorporate it into your business. 

Your first stop is likely to be creating stories and articles for your website or blog, raising tourist motivation and engagement. It’s a complicated psychological process. However, if your online visitor feels their trip has already begun when they visit your site, you’re already establishing a high level of tourist satisfaction!

3. Plan your Destination Marketing Based on Visitor Feedback

As a business owner in the tourism industry, it’s essential to understand your target market’s needs.

Successful tourist destinations are constantly evolving. What was popular last year may not be this year. The best way to keep up is to collect feedback from visitors. Then you can use it to plan your destination marketing strategy. 

Here are a few tips on how to get started:

Use surveys: You can use online surveys or in-person surveys to collect feedback from visitors. Be sure to ask questions about what they liked and didn’t like about their experience. 

Monitor social media: Social media is a great way to see what people say about your destination. Pay attention to both positive and negative comments so you can address any concerns.

Use data: Data can be a valuable tool for understanding visitor behaviour. Look at things like where they came from, how long they stayed and which attractions they visited. This information can help you plan your marketing efforts.

By collecting feedback to help guide your decisions, you can ensure that your destination constantly evolves to meet visitors’ needs. That will help you attract more tourists and improve the overall experience for everyone involved.

4. Package and Price your Tourist Experience Properly

trailfinders packaged experience

When tourists visit your website, venue or destination, they’re looking for a new experience. If you can provide that in your packaging and pricing, you’ll be building engaging tourist experiences from the beginning of your relationship.

Offer Variety for the Individual Tourist

One way to make sure you are effectively packaging and pricing your tourist experience is by offering variety

Even if you specialise in a particular niche, find its variety. Have different activities, tours, accommodation options and destinations available. Let each visitor engage with your site and discover the options that suit them best. That way, they’ll gain ownership of their trip before they even book!

Present Several Affordable Options 

Affordability is critical in the tourist industry: you’ll want your products to appeal to a wide range of customers. Look to develop possibilities across a range of price points and make sure that the cost for each significant element is clear to the visitor. 

Engage Customers with Something Extra 

Lastly, always try to go above and beyond for a potential visitor and surprise them with something special or unexpected. 

Before they buy, you could offer an added discount or benefit. Maybe provide a film-induced tourism experience? Perhaps include options to stay with locals or visit a historic district as a bonus? Just make sure you do something to show them that you appreciate them (whether they book or not).

5. Ensure the Booking Process is Part of the Tourism Experience

The booking process is one of the most critical aspects of the tourist experience.

 You want to make it easy for potential customers. If the booking is enjoyable, their trip will be fantastic!

An online booking system will allow potential customers to successfully book their packages without the need to call or email. If you’re currently using a third-party agency, do some research for tools that will enable you to manage this process yourself.

Make sure your website provides clear instructions on booking a tour or activity. You should also ensure that visitors are shown the booking journey in advance, avoiding surprises and building trust.

Allow potential customers to pay for their tour or activity using multiple methods, such as credit card, PayPal, or bank transfer. You might also consider ‘buy now pay later’ finance options.

Including the booking process as part of the tourist experience will provide a better overall experience for your potential customers. That will lead to more bookings and, ultimately, more business for you.

6. Make your Website a Tourist Attraction

come and explore calanais web page

Creating memorable tourist experiences starts with a great website.

It’s often the first point of contact with a potential trip that tourists experience. That means it’s essential to have a website that makes a great first impression.

5 tips for creating a great online experience for tourists:

  1. Make sure your website is easy to navigate. The last thing tourists want is to waste time looking for information on your site. Make everything easily accessible so they can learn more about what you offer quickly and easily.
  2. Include photos and videos of your packages and destinations. Seeing is believing, and if potential customers can visualise themselves at your venue, they’re more likely to book with you.
  3. Make your website mobile-friendly. With so many people using their phones and tablets to browse the internet, your website must look good on all devices.
  4. Include a blog on your site. That’s a great way to keep tourists updated and bring the holiday experience to life before buying from you.
  5. Keep your website up-to-date. Nothing is more frustrating than visiting a website that remains out of date for months (or even years!). Make sure you regularly update your site with new content, photos and deals, so people always have a positive new focus.

Make sure also to include testimonials or reviews on your website so that potential customers can see that others had positive experiences with your business. 

By following these tips, you can ensure that potential customers will have a great experience even before they visit your business in person. 

7. Create Contemporary Tourist Experiences

Both tourists and destination partners want to capture what’s hot right now. 

From sustainable development to social tourism, a recent leisure experience lends value and is a positive selling point.

If you want to set yourself apart from the competition, you need to offer unique experiences that tourists can’t find anywhere else. That could be a tour of an ancient city or a hike through the jungle. The emotions related to escape from an ordinary life can be overwhelming. 

They’re also an excellent tool for engaging prospective clients.

Tourism studies show that getting creative with your tourist experiences works. Partner up with other local providers and agencies, and you’ll create original, unrepeatable experiences. 

If visitors to your site can customise their options and build fresh and exciting holiday bundles, they’re likely to go ahead and book. It also adds to your brand authenticity.

8. Build a Bond of Professionalism and Trust Online

abta trusted tourist brand

Tourism experiences work on trust… 

When tourists visit your website, they should feel like they can trust you with their business. Your website should look professional and be free of any errors. It should also look like you know what you’re doing.

If your website looks unprofessional, it will reflect poorly on your business as a whole.

Membership of professional organisations is also a powerful way to generate trust in an online setting. From ABTA to the World Tourism Organization, promoting your professional credentials on the site is vital.

Finally, make sure your customer service is top-notch

The complex nature of travel and hospitality means it’s a service industry through and through. That sense of service starts before they make a booking.

If a customer has a question, they should have quick and easy access to the answer. Respond to queries promptly and positively and do your best to resolve any issues. 

By establishing trust and professionalism online, you’ll make it easier for tourists to buy from you.

9. Embrace the Power of Social Media for Tourism Management

Social media is not a new concept, and it’s no secret that platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter can be powerful tools to reach new audiences. Social media should be a crucial part of your tourist experience marketing strategy – but only if you use it correctly.

People love visuals, so make sure your destination looks its best by sharing high-quality photos and videos on social media. By doing this, you will show potential visitors what they can expect if they visit your location.

As a tourism professional, you likely have a wealth of information to share with potential visitors. Make sure this information is easily accessible on your social media pages. 

If your business has any upcoming special events or promotions, make sure to promote them on social media!

Social media can also be a great way to connect with tourists looking for destinations and services like yours. Join groups and help tourists learn about local attractions and activities.

One of the best things about social media is its platform for real-time communication. If you see someone asking a question about your tourist destination, be sure to answer them quickly and thoroughly

By tracking your social media posts engagement, you can better understand which marketing campaigns work best. 

10. Keep your Communications Engaging and Reassuring

inspiring online tourist experience

With international tourism and luxury tourism experiences on the rise, remember that you’ll be communicating across languages and cultures. 

When people consider spending their hard-earned money on tourist experiences, they need reassurance that everything will go well. Literally and metaphorically, you need to speak their language

They also want to be engaged in the process and enjoy regular communication. 

Here are some ways to keep your communications engaging and reassuring:

  • Use positive language at all times
  • Make sure your tone is friendly and helpful
  • Answer customer questions quickly and thoroughly
  • Avoid making any promises you can’t keep
  • Share interesting information about your company and the tourist experience you offer
  • Be personal and responsive to customers’ needs and concerns
  • Show enthusiasm for what you do! People like to buy from businesses that they feel good about supporting.

When it comes to automated processes and mailing lists, it’s vital to get the tone of your emails connected to your brand story.

Conclusion: Providing a Great All Round Experience

These are just a few things you can do to start the tourist experience before clients buy from you. Remember, your website is the first impression potential customers will have of your business, so make sure it is up to par! 

With a bit of effort, you can ensure that every tourist who comes across your brand has a positive experience from beginning to end.

top ten tips for tourist experience
Published on March 9, 2022

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