Growing Your Tour Business with OTAs (Online Travel Agencies)

April 13, 2017, Shannon Potts

Online Travel Agencies (OTAs) typically grew roots for the flight and accommodation industries, but there’s been a fast growing shift towards tours and activities.

Not only are some OTAs completely dedicated to offering Tours and Activities, well established flight/accommodation OTAs like Expedia have opened up branches to cover the increasing traveler demand for ‘Things to Do’.

After you’ve solidified your own web presence, it’s important to test different marketing channels where travellers can find you. Having an OTA marketing strategy is a great way to get noticed and grow.

Phocuswright conducted a survey to map out the top 10 reasons why travellers use OTAs:

It reinforces what I mentioned in my video on Should You List on Online Travel Agencies (below), travellers are using OTA’s because it’s their preferred method of booking. They are used to the way the website functions, they can see the most options, and there’s a trusted brand taking the credit card. Take advantage of OTAs massive marketing budgets.

Integrating your booking system directly will mean there isn’t extra effort beyond signing up and activating the OTA add-on on your part. Plus, it will act as a channel manager for tours and activities as your availability will update live across every venue you list on, and you’ll see your calendar fill up automatically.

If you find the majority of your bookings are coming through OTA’s, you need to review and ensure that your own website is easy to find, and easy to book on both desktop and mobile. OTA’s should drive around 30% of your revenue.

With OTAs, it’s never been easier to kick-start your growth.

P.S. An OTA site is a great place to get a 5 star rating. 

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Related Articles: Why Google is the Best Review Platform for Tour Operators | How to Team Up With Local Tour Operators and Thrive | Are Your Guests Craving Hyper-Personalization? | Why Digital Waivers Are a Must-Have For Your Business | Is Your Booking Fee Leading to Cart Abandonment? | What Solo Travelers Want for In-Destination Experiences |

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