J.D. Power: Highest-ranked online travel agencies excel in effectiveness of website

1 May 2014

While price continues to be an important factor driving customer satisfaction with online travel agencies, the highest-performing agencies excel by providing a superior website/online store experience, with clear layout and design, ease of navigation and useful information, according to the J.D. Power 2014 Online Travel Agency Satisfaction Report.

“In TODAY´s competitive market, offering a low price is a necessity but does not automatically ensure customer satisfaction,” said Rick Garlick, global travel and hospitality practice lead at J.D. Power. “Online travel agencies need to provide a user-friendly Web experience to meet customer expectations. If the site does not function well or provide the kind of information customers expect, they will either move on to a competitor´s website or phone the agency´s call centre, costing the agency time and money.”

The report measures overall customer satisfaction with the purchase experience when buying a vacation package, flight, hotel or rental car using an online travel website. Seven factors are examined in the report (listed in order of importance): competitiveness of pricing; usefulness of information; availability of booking/reservation options; website/online store; ease of booking/reserving; competitiveness of sales and promotions; and contact with customer service.

The 2014 Online Travel Agency Satisfaction Report is based on responses from 2,673 customers who made an online purchase from an independent travel website during the past 12 months. The study was fielded from March 11, 2014, through March 31, 2014.

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