In the year to June 2014, 35% of Australians aged 14+ indicated they had used travel agents or tour operators to book holidays in the last 12 months. The question is, how many of them would consider using the same company again for their next holiday, and which companies stand the best chance of their customers returning? Roy Morgan Research investigates…
Used by more Australians (9%) than any other travel agency in the 12 months to June 2014, Flight Centre was also number one for consideration among its customers, with 76% of people who used it saying they would consider using it again for their next holiday.
Travellers who’d consider using the same travel agent for their next trip that they have used in the last 12 months
Source: Roy Morgan Single Source (Australia), July 2013-June 2014 (n=5,734).
Agoda.com and Expedia.com.au clearly won some fans too: 75% of travellers who used these booking websites for a holiday in the last 12 months would consider doing so again for their next trip. Booking.com and Wotif.com can also expect a healthy flow of return customers, each scoring a 74% consideration rate.
STA (73%) and Escape Travel (67%) were the only other bricks-and-mortar agencies to feature among the Top 10 most considered by customers who used them in the last 12 months.
Angela Smith, Group Account Director – Consumer Products, Roy Morgan Research, says:
“First-time customers are one thing, but return business is another! By considering the same travel agency or booking site they used for other holidays in the past year, customers are in effect signalling their satisfaction. When they act upon this and actually use it for their next holiday, they’ve taken the first step towards becoming regulars.
“With more than three-quarters of its customers considering it again for their next holiday, Flight Centre is clearly doing something right. If these customers do indeed return, their repeat business will help this agency stay on top.
“Of course, the value represented by return customers goes beyond their own bookings, to encompass potential word-of-mouth marketing. Our findings show that while 35% of the population used some kind of travel agent in the last year, 49% say they’d consider using one for their next holiday — a golden opportunity for agencies whose customers would consider using them again, since these customers are probably likely to recommend them to their friends and family too.
“Roy Morgan Research’s in-depth profiling tool Helix Personas can help travel agents identify who is most likely to consider using them for their next trip. For example, people from the New School Cool persona are 144% more likely to consider using Expedia.com.au for their next trip than the average Australian. These high-earning inner-city dwellers tend to be young, tech savvy and love to travel: but are probably too busy to visit a travel agent in person (especially when flights and accommodation are an easy click away).
“Meanwhile, On Their Way individuals are 32% more likely to consider Flight Centre for their next holiday. Despite their healthy salaries and enviable lifestyles, On Their Way are fairly budget-minded, and would welcome a bricks-and-mortar travel agent’s know-how in getting them a good deal – especially because so many of them would be travelling as a family unit.
“The full detail of Roy Morgan data enables analysts to see the brand value of customer loyalty in this market, as well as the dollar-value associated with customers of every agency.”
Roy Morgan Research
Roy Morgan Research is Australia's best known and longest established market research and public opinion survey company. Roy Morgan Single Source is thorough, accurate, and provides comprehensive, directly applicable information about current and future customers. It is unique in that it directs all the questions to each individual from a base survey sample of around 55,000 interviews in Australia and 15,000 interviews in New Zealand annually - the largest Single Source databases in the world. The questions asked relate to lifestyle and attitudes, media consumption habits (including TV, radio, newspapers, magazines, cinema, catalogues, pay TV and the Internet), brand and product usage, purchase intentions, retail visitations, service provider preferences, financial information and recreation and leisure activities. This lead product is supported by a nationally networked, consultancy-orientated market research capability.
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