Digital Travel Trends and Takeaways July 2017

From the Thought Leadership Team at USDM Digital®


TREND: Over the next 10 years, travel industry experts predict that the digital travel space worldwide will expand at an annual rate of 3.8% to reach $11.4 trillion, according to Nielson Research. Online revenue for the travel industry this summer is expected to hit $98.02 billion, according to Adobe Digital Insights projections. The major travel holidays will be Independence Day ($3.68 billion), Memorial Day weekend ($2.93 billion), and Labor Day weekend ($2.83 billion). Nielson Research also found that Travelers spend an average of 53 days visiting 28 different websites over a period of 76 online sessions, with more than 50% of travelers checking social media for travel tips 

USDM Take-Away:  The evidence is clear, overwhelming and still mounting; travel industry revenue growth is online and consumers are spending enormous amounts of time online planning their travel. You should already have shifted the majority of your marketing budget to multiple online initiatives. If not, you are losing valuable exposure, customer engagement, market share and revenue generation.

TREND: Want to jump ahead? Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), and Wearables are emerging as Travel Industry Disrupters and a Megatrend.

  • New analysis of 321 million social engagements by Adobe Digital Insights (AD) has found at least eight of the largest hotels have tested some kind of VR experience during the past six months. Most of these experiences were programs that paired VR devices with consumers’ mobile devices.
  • Consumers seem to crave these types of experiences: ADI found that social mentions for travel and AR/VR-related experiences have increased 13% year over year (YoY). Social mentions about travel-related wearables also increased (44% YoY)
  • Apple’s 10th anniversary iPhone is expected to feature AR and VR enhancements.

USDM Take-Away: As the travel and tourism industry continues to court the massive shift to predominant Millennial travelers who greatly value experiences over possessions, AR and VR offerings will deliver significant exposure, engagement, and revenue.

TRENDThe artificial intelligence market is expected to be worth $16.06 billion by 2022, growing at a CAGR of 62.9% from 2016 to 2022. The most popular application is the Virtual Assistance – 37% of consumers use Siri, 23% use Microsoft’s Cortana AI, and 19% use Amazon’s Alexa AI at least monthly. Amazon’s voice assistant Alexa could bring the U.S. e-commerce giant $10 billion of revenues by 2020 and be a “mega-hit.”

USDM Take-Away: Consumers’ massive adoption of smartphones led to today’s mobile-first e-commerce world. Soon to be added to this trend will be the wearable virtual assistant. Voice commands will replace the touchscreen phone, allowing consumers to search, download content, even purchase items verbally and hands-free while doing other activities (driving, walking, cooking, etc.).


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