One of the biggest problems that many regular travel agencies face when dealing with corporate travelers is maintaining their loyalty over a long period of time. Without dedicating a certain amount of their resources to corporate travel, many find that travelers only use them once before moving onto another agency that is better able to serve their needs and offers a more personal level of service that goes beyond simply finding a flight and hotel.
This is where Corporate Booking Solutions (CBTs) come into play. These systems have been adopted by many agencies that are looking to offer a better level of service to their corporate clients, taking much of the hassle out of finding accommodation and flights, whilst also offering a range of additional features that allow for the creation and tracking of a corporate customer’s itinerary.
This has led to more dedicated corporate travel agents appearing, basing their services around those that can be offered via the CBT, which in turn allows for them to provide a more personal service to corporate travelers. It also allows for increased levels of loyalty in the following ways.
The business world has always been as much about the relationships forged by companies as it has the services that are offered by that company. Simply put, most corporate travelers are less concerned with the price they pay if they feel as though they are getting a personalized service that is dedicated to finding them the perfect travel package, allowing them to meet their business engagements and not lose track of time thanks to a well-kept itinerary.
This is something that CBTs allow corporate travel agents to provide. Instead of spending most of their time trawling through flights and accommodations, the CBT system not only does all of the legwork but in many cases can even be adjusted to match the client’s needs based on their previous dealings with the agency. This allows the agent to spend more time working directly with their corporate travelers, instead of being distracted constantly by the busy work that takes away from the level of service they provide. In turn, this allows for the building of a trusting relationship, leading to the client returning due to the level of service they have received and the simple fact that they like working with the agency that provided that level of service.
This point was touched upon a little earlier but it is worth expanding a little further as well. A good corporate booking solution takes a lot of the legwork out of finding accommodation, flights and creating an itinerary, allowing the agent to not only focus more on the client but to also make better use of the time that has been saved elsewhere to the benefit of the agency.
Instead of searching through different hotels to find which services the client is looking for, a CBT will allow the agent to filter through results based on a number of different fields, with an online database not only managing all of the potential results but also maintaining data about the corporate client themselves in order to find what they are looking for as quickly as possible. This is perfect for corporate travel, as it still allows for the level of service that clients expect while managing to deliver that service at a very high pace. Consider how useful this can be for corporate travelers who need to book journeys at the last minute and you will see why a good CBT will help corporate travel agents maintain those customers due to their efficient nature.
They Offer Value to the Customer
We have focused on how a CBT allows for the agent to be more personally involved with the customer, thus building a trusting relationship, and how it allows for the various tasks the client needs to have performed to be done in an efficient manner as possible. However, we haven’t yet focused on the added value that a corporate booking solution offers to the client beyond speed and relationships.
Such systems are usually subscribed to by the agency, with the company that created the CBT being responsible for inputting all of the information regarding hotels, flights and the like. This cuts down on the work required by the agent, but also opens up the opportunity for them to establish contact with service providers that they may otherwise have never been exposed to if they did everything manually, instead of using the system. Being exposed to more service providers means that the agent has more choice when booking corporate travel, allowing them to scratch names of the list over time, in addition to potentially finding new suppliers that the client enjoys.
The Final Word
So a good corporate booking solution can provide many different benefits to corporate travelers, but why does this ensure their loyalty? It is really simple. As long as you accompany the level of service that a CBT allows you to provide with a personable and dedicated level of customer service that makes the client feel as though their business is valued, you will find that the loyalty they have for your agency grows enormously.
Customers want to feel like the companies they work with care about them and the business that they bring, regardless of the service. This is particularly the case for corporate clients due to the fact that they often spend more than the average customer. In many cases, they are happy to spend this little bit extra in order to get the higher standard of service that a CBT allows the agent to provide.
As such, if you are considering focusing on the corporate travel niche and have yet to invest in a CBT, you should do so. While the initial investment may sting a little more than you would like, the value that you will receive from the package will be enormous. Customer loyalty alone is important, as is being able to provide a faster service that allows you to focus your time in other important areas.