What do the big players in the travel industry need to do to succeed against app giants like Google?
Work together, according to analysts at Strategy Analytics, whose new travel report suggests that only 20 percent of people who use airline applications also use hotel applications.
That leads to a chopped-up travel planning experience that isn’t helping Hilton, Marriott, JetBlue, Delta, or any of the other behemoths in the business of helping travelers.
“There is no reason that travel companies – specifically hotels and airlines – should not be partnering to better align their mobile strategies, messaging and experiences,” asserts Joshua Martin, Travel Analytics Research Service Director. “Partnering will create a more cohesive experience that will limit the attractiveness for consumers of using alternative services.”
And Google is causing travel industry players real headaches. The company continues to release new service features regularly, cramping hotel and airline app relevance.
Data gathered from about 1,500 users of Android travel apps indicates just 17 percent of travelers who used an airline app went on to find a hotel app.
“Already struggling to win millennial mindshare, airlines and hotels are met with two other immediate threats,” notes Strategy Analytics. “Itinerary planning apps such as TripIt and Worldmate are quickly emulating many of the unique features that hotel and airline apps offer to provide the cohesive single-app experience hotel and airline apps lack.”
In a word, mobile is where the action is — and will remain.
“We expect industry consolidation to continue as evidenced by Expedia’s acquisition of Travelocity,” says Barry Gilbert, a VP at Strategy Analytics. “We have reported on Travelocity’s struggle to remain relevant to mobile and it should be a warning that mobile is already a critical battleground for travel.”